BBN tapped for artificial intelligence

BBN Technologies won a $5.5 million contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency for the first phase of the Integrated Learning Program, an artificial intelligence project.

Under the contract, BBN of Cambridge, Mass., will develop an artificial intelligence capability that will learn plans and processes after being shown an example. The value of the work, if all four years of the development program are completed, could be as much as $24 million.

The goal of the project is to combine specialized knowledge with common-sense knowledge to create a reasoning system that learns as well as a person, and can be applied to complex tasks. Such a system would expand the kinds of tasks a computer can learn. The Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, will administer the contract.

The first year of BBN's research will focus on military medical-logistics planning. The specific scenario will be a simulation that requires evacuating wounded soldiers and civilians from Fallujah, Iraq, to hospitals in Germany and Kuwait.

This is expected to help build a capacity to develop more effective military decision and planning support systems at lower costs and that require less training.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Washington Technology.

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