US limits AI exports over fears it will fall into Chinese hands

The rule is the first one to be nailed down as part of a larger requirement for tighter exports on sensitive technology to countries with a less-than-friendly attitude toward the US. It’s meant to both prevent these nations from easily copying American technology (and thus negating economic advantages) or identifying security weaknesses.

While this limits the reach of AI that could be useful for genuinely helpful purposes, such as identifying the effects of climate change or urban sprawl, it might also be a relief to an industry worried about harsher restrictions. After all, the US blacklisted Huawei over its fears of Chinese surveillance. It wouldn’t have been a stretch for the government to outright ban key AI exports.

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