India to begin teaching teens how to build their OWN AI using DIY kits

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An Indian deep-tech startup will begin teaching the country’s teenagers how to build their own artificial intelligence systems using DIY kits, before applying what they’ve learned to real-world problems.

Tech start-up CYRAN developed the ‘BUDDHI AI DIY Kit’, with ‘Buddhi’ standing for “Build, Understand, Design, Deploy Human-like Intelligence.” It also means ‘brain’ or ‘mind’ in Hindi. 

The pack includes an AI handbook, DIY AI projects, lessons, exercises, presentations, and videos while making use of both proprietary software and hardware like AI actuation circuit boards powered by AI computing-engines.

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AI was only recently added to the school curriculum in India by the country’s Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), and will be taught to pupils in class 8, from roughly the age of 14 onwards, who have the requisite background in subjects like advanced mathematics, data science, and computer programming. A CBSE official previously said that AI “will be the power that will fuel the future global digital economy.”

While it will impart some vital knowledge in a crucial sector for the country’s future, kids won’t be developing Terminators to enforce an end to homework any time soon. 

“The motivation behind BUDDHI kit is to help young school students learn the practical aspects of a complex topic like AI in a friendly and simple manner,” said CYRAN founder Dr Manan Suri, assistant professor at IIT Delhi.

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Suri was previously cited by MIT as one of the world’s top 35 innovators under 35, and spent two years developing the specialized AI training. The teen teaching project is a part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Make in India” development program, launched back in September 2014, which encompasses 25 sectors of the Indian economy.

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