The Indian division of German engineering and electronics firm Bosch on Wednesday said that it will invest Rs 20 crore ($2.8 million at current exchange rates) to launch a centre for data science and artificial intelligence (AI) at the IIT Madras campus. Bosch will make the investment over a period of five years, the company said in a statement.
Called the The Robert Bosch Center for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (RBC-DSAI), the centre will undertake foundational research in many areas of AI and data science, namely deep learning, reinforcement learning, network analytics, interpretable machine learning, and domain aware AI.
According to Michael Bolle, member of Bosch's board of management, the centre will create societal impact through multidisciplinary interactions with government, academic, research and industrial collaborators on core challenges in data science and AI.
The other areas of activity that the centre will focus on are research projects, knowledge management and dissemination, outreach projects, and setting up collaborative facilities and laboratories.
The company also said that the centre will conduct applied research in four verticals—manufacturing analytics, financial analytics, smart cities, and systems biology and healthcare.
Professor B Ravindran, who will head the centre, said that since the accuracy of data sets in India, which are fundamental to building new technologies, need improvement, the centre will try and set up a portal of curated data sets specific to the country that will be made easy to access.
Bosch is also working on emerging technologies like blockchain. In an earlier interview with TechCircle, Sri Krishnan V, a senior vice president at Robert Bosch Engineering and Business Solutions Pvt. Ltd, said the German company is already working with several other companies on blockchain technologies for a paid proof-of-concept in India.
“We see the adoption accelerating in 2019. All signs are there which say that crossing the chasm could happen within the next couple of years," Krishnan said, referring to blockchain's use.
Blockchain is an immutable book-keeping technology that uses cryptography to time-stamp all transaction data in that particular chain. The technology has been used to develop cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and its other uses are also increasing.