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The JAIC enters post-Shanahan era

Lt. Gen. Jack Shanahan, the founding leader of the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center, is departing the Pentagon's budding AI hub. But as he does, he is saying the JAIC is ready to think about the battlefield. The center is set to tackle projects like faster communications under its Joint Warfighting mission initiative, the general said during a virtual event with the Center for International and Strategic Studies. “We have to get AI right for our own purposes and our own national security,” Shanahan said of the JAIC’s work. “We can’t afford to let up on the gas pedal one bit, I would say we have to go faster.” Jackson Barnett has more on the JAIC.

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VA's coronavirus IT spending

The Department of Veterans Affairs is “putting every penny of” the more than $2 billion it received for emergency IT funding to “effective use” during the coronavirus pandemic. VA CIO James Gfrerer said during a recent AFCEA Bethesda virtual event that with the support of the funding, the VA has “moved ahead quickly and accelerated our digital transformation and our expansion across a number of areas” to continue providing critical services to veterans during the pandemic. Some highlights of that spending: The VA went “from a high of about 40,000 workers in a remote access posture to almost 140,000 presently” teleworking today, Gfrerer said. The department has also doubled its virtual private network access and tripled its telehealth capacity with a “tenfold increase in daily appointments,” Gfrerer said. Billy Mitchell has more from Gfrerer.

Air Force adds to 5G pilots

The Air Force has added another facility to its list of 5G pilots across the country. Nellis Air Force Base will partner with an industry consortium, the 485-member Information Warfare Research Project, to develop software prototypes to leverage the increased data transmission speeds that 5G will bring. Construction on the private 5G network is expected to begin in July, and it will be fully operational in January, according to the Department of Defense. Jackson has the scoop on the Air Force's 5G.

U.S. wants to stick it to Chinese AI

The U.S. entered into the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence last week to focus on coronavirus response and recovery. After initially steering clear of the G-7 group, the White House appears to have accepted a place in it mainly to contrast its vision of trustworthy, explainable AI with China's perceived misuse. “AI is being twisted by authoritarian regimes to violate rights,” Michael Kratsios, U.S. chief technology officer, wrote in a Wall Street Journal op-ed Wednesday. The U.S. intends to “push back” against that approach, Kratsios wrote. Dave Nyczepir has more.

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