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Austin AI Ecosystem Meetup
April 25 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pmFree
Austin has emerged as a leading technology hub, and there is huge potential for leadership in the rapidly growing area of AI. Austin is now home to many AI companies, from new startups to small and midsized companies with significant AI expertise, products, and services. Austin is also the home for the headquarters or large divisions of many national and global technology companies (Dell, IBM, AMD, NVIDIA, Intel, Google, Meta, AWS, Apple, and more) that develop processors, systems, and software used to develop and implement AI in products, services, and/or internal operations. UT Austin’s computer sciences department is nationally ranked in AI, and its Good Systems program is developing responsible AI applications to improve society. Finally, Austin has local, state, and federal government (civilian and defense) organizations and agencies with responsibilities and missions that increasingly require and deploy AI capabilities. In short, Austin’s strong tech sector, UT Austin plus other universities, and extensive government presence, coupled with a creative, can-do culture, should enable Austin to become one of the leading cities in the world in AI development, applications, and impact. To do so will require collaborative participation, organization, and leadership.
The Austin Forum on Technology & Society, Austin’s largest monthly technology events organization, will host an Austin AI Ecosystem Meetup on Tuesday, April 25 at the Capital Factory to bring together AI experts from these constituents to discuss the potential formation of an Austin AI ecosystem initiative. (This meetup reboots an effort started in 2019 but paused by the pandemic, with some initial materials already prepared.) All professionals and researchers who work in AI in Austin are welcome to attend. A small set of AI experts from industry and academia will provide some opening context about possibilities and potential goals and plans, which may include:
Developing an Austin AI ecosystem communications platform to share expertise and ideas
Establishing a blog, podcast, and/or seminar series for Austin AI professionals to share results and next steps
Sharing training opportunities for developing a larger AI workforce
Sharing job, internship, and mentoring opportunities in Austin
Creating new training collaboratively
Establishing an Austin-based AI conference that attracts national and global participation but plays to Austin’s AI core strengths
Creating an annual report on the state of AI in Austin’s industry and how Austin ranks
And possibly, creating a proposal to fund a consortium effort with pre-competitive research, similar to what launched Austin as a semiconductor leader in the Sematech/MCC days
They will then serve as facilitators during open networking, and finally moderate a closing session at which any attendee can share thoughts on the goals/objectives, potential benefits, formation, and/or execution of a sustained effort (with suggestions captured by a scribe). The moderators and attendees and moderators will then take over future planning for this effort (if the consensus is to go forward), and everyone will leave knowing more about the Austin AI ecosystem participants and having established new potential collaborators.