Toyota Hires U.S. Military’s Top Robotics Engineer for AI Push

Toyota Motor Corp. has hired Gill Pratt, the U.S. military’s top robotics engineer, as part of a $50 million investment in artificial-intelligence research designed to reduce highway deaths and injuries. Joint research centers will be established at Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the automaker said in a statement Friday. Pratt, who taught at MIT for several years, had been program manager for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s robotics efforts. Automakers are studying artificial intelligence as demographic shifts such as aging, population increases and the growth of megacities pose challenges for mobility. Toyota and the teams at the two schools will focus on improving a vehicle’s ability to recognize objects, navigate different environments and interact with other cars and pedestrians. “One million people worldwide die in car accidents…


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