The time period between November 30th and December 14th, 2016 has been—and continues to be—an incredibly exciting time for Udacity, and for all aspiring Artificial Intelligence Engineers. By the time this period comes to a close, hundreds of students will have committed to our Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program, establishing themselves as the next generation of AI talent. With program start dates ranging from January to April of 2017, we can say with confidence that come the end of next year, we’ll be looking back on some incredible accomplishments from these dedicated learners.
If your registration in our Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program is complete by December 14th, then we’ve got some additionally exciting news for you: you’re eligible to win lunch with Peter Norvig! Peter is the Director of Research at Google, a course instructor for the Udacity Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program, and an author of “Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach,” the de facto standard text on AI.
Now that we’re preparing to close the inaugural round of applications for our new Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program, we are quietly but excitedly settling down to the work of rolling out this incredible curriculum for our incoming students. In this post, we’re going to look at the origin story of this program’s curriculum. The first step in preparing a comprehensive AI program is to understand the relevance and trajectory of the field itself.
AI Today, AI Tomorrow
One thing is unequivocally clear: There has never been a better time to study Artificial Intelligence. Demand for smarter solutions to problems big and small—combined with increasing access to high performance computing and an abundance of rich data sources—means AI is poised to seismically impact the world of computing for the better.
Artificial intelligence. Machine learning. Self-driving cars. If you’re keeping up with the rapid changes in the technology industry, you’re seeing a bunch of terms thrown around as if they’re interchangeable—but really, there are some pretty important distinctions. In this post, we’re going to demystify the differences, and clarify the relationships, among these terms, especially artificial intelligence, machine learning, and self-driving cars. Let’s begin with a simple model for how we’ll approach this topic:
Artificial intelligence is the ‘what’.
Machine learning is the ‘how’.
Self-driving cars are the ‘why’.
At Udacity, we believe applications of artificial intelligence will bring transformative change to all industries, and not in some distant science-fiction future—we are seeing rapidly growing demand for AI-related skills right now, and new artificial intelligence jobs are emerging every day. This is exactly why we created our recently announced Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program.
Many of these jobs are still very new however, and we’ve learned from our program applicants—who already number in the thousands!—that while they’re excited about their prospects, they also have questions about exactly what kinds of jobs they’ll be able to pursue after graduating from this program.
So we took it upon ourselves to answer this question. To begin, we needed concrete data. We looked at thousands of job descriptions posted on common job hunting sites like Stack Overflow, Indeed, and Hacker News, and we found some very interesting trends for those considering careers in artificial intelligence.
Over 3000 people have applied to our new Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program since we opened applications on October 25th! So we’re clearly not the only ones excited about AI. Which means we’re not the only ones excited about our next guest for Udacity Talks.
Yann LeCun’s name is virtually synonymous with both artificial intelligence and deep learning, and his role as the Director of AI Research at Facebook makes him arguably one of THE most visible and influential voices in the field. Which is why we’re so thrilled to announce the following:
Yann LeCun will be our Udacity Talks guest on November 1st!
Few topics today are as compelling as artificial intelligence. From ethicists to artists, physicians to statisticians, roboticists to linguists, everyone is talking about it, and there is virtually no field that stands apart from its influence. That said, there is still so much we don’t know about the future of artificial intelligence. But, that is honestly part of the excitement!
What we DO know, is that world-class, affordable AI education is still very hard to come by, which means unless something changes, and unless new learning opportunities emerge, the field will suffer for a lack of diverse, global talent.
Fortunately, something IS changing. We are so excited to announce our newest offering, the Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program!