After months of public meetings, the task force, which is overseen by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Science Foundation, said the resource should be managed by an independent, nongovernmental entity.
And, despite expectations by some that the NAIRR would be available only for academic research, task force leaders reaffirmed their interest in opening it up to startups.
The NAIRR is primarily aimed at universities, said Lynne Parker, director of the National AI Initiative Office in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and co-chair of the task force. However, at a press conference today, she said, “Certainly the task force is open to enabling startups that have, for example, received federal grants.” She specifically mentioned grant programs for small business innovation research and small business technology transfer.
Who exactly will be able to access the NAIRR has been in question throughout the initial development phase of the resource. Some proponents of NAIRR, including the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI), have opposed opening it up to private companies, noting that it should focus on the needs of academic and nonprofit researchers. non-profit.
In its report, the task force also supported the creation of “an independent, non-governmental entity staffed with expert and specialized staff” to manage infrastructure, resource allocation, user support and security. of the NAIRR. They called on federal agencies to make new or existing infrastructure resources available to NAIRR – including some from private sector providers – for AI research and development, including data, computation and test benches.
Several companies, including the big three cloud providers – Amazon’s AWS, Google Cloud and Microsoft’s Azure – have all submitted proposals for the project.
“It is important that NAIRR computing resources cover the full range of possible offerings, including commercial cloud, high-performance and high-speed computing, on-premises resources (at university and/or government sites), and ‘advanced’ computing devices, and new computing approaches and platforms,” the task force report states.
Working group co-chair Manish Parashar, director of the Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure at the National Science Foundation, pointed to existing NSF facilities that could serve as models for managing NAIRR’s shared infrastructure. “We can look at them over the next few months to see how we can learn from them and see how effective they will be for a resource such as what is envisioned as the NAIRR,” he said.
NAIRR planners highlighted the need for the resource to be accessible to a diverse and inclusive group of people, and to incorporate responsible and trustworthy AI principles into data resources and AI developed at the facility. help from these. “The Task Force recommends that NAIRR establish an ethics review process to review all resources included in the system and research conducted with it. NAIRR users will be required to complete regularly updated ethics training modules before gaining access to the network,” Parashar said.
The task force is seeking public comment on the report and a public listening session will be held on June 23.