IBM Helping to Build an AI-Powered Academic Adviser

A partnership between the University of Michigan and IBM could spark the next wave of artificial intelligence (AI) interfaces — and the test bed for the work will be an academic adviser for students driven by cognitive computing. The $4.5 million, multiyear partnership, dubbed Project Sapphire, combines IBM’s resources with scientists and students at the University of Michigan’s Artificial Intelligence Lab, according to a news release from the University of Michigan. Scientists will feed this new AI large volumes of recorded human interactions between students and academic advisers to give the system a conversational edge, allowing it to improve upon the scripted responses of previous AI. “Natural conversations bring in so many different aspects of human intelligence — knowledge, context, goals and emotion, for instance. In many ways, to build…


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