BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Artificial Intelligence is changing technology and the world, and Indiana University has long led the way in this critical area.
Now, AI at IU has a home.
IU President Michael A. McRobbie dedicated the $35 million Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence, a 58,000-square-foot facility that will serve as the hub for multidisciplinary research in advanced AI and machine-learning applications, during a ceremony June 23 at Luddy Hall.
"As we dedicate the Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence, it is fair to say that we are also celebrating what will be a game-changing development for Indiana University," McRobbie said. "Indiana University has been a center of research in a number of areas of AI for many years. Artificial intelligence has long been an area of strength of the Department of Computer Science and, more broadly, IU faculty in the cognitive sciences, psychological sciences and neurosciences have also long been engaged in areas of research relevant to AI. The explosion worldwide of the uses and applications of AI, building on decades of steady research progress, made this the perfect time for IU to establish a major holistic initiative in artificial intelligence."
The initial focus of the Luddy Center for AI, which will open in August, will include robotics, complex networks, health and social media. The center will draw upon the strength of researchers at the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing and Engineering, as well as collaborators from IU's extensive range of health and life science schools, departments and programs.
"Our campus is the perfect space for this fabulous, synthetic, future-looking center," IU Bloomington Provost and Executive Vice President Lauren Robel said. "It is filled with world-renowned experts, and the opportunities for collaboration across disciplines abound. These experts, moreover, bring with them vast networks of connection outside the university, which only provide rocket fuel to the ongoing conversations and collaborations happening across campus."
The facility is part of the $60 million gift from IU alumnus Fred Luddy -- the second-largest private gift in IU history -- in 2019. The Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence features state-of-the-art teaching and learning spaces dedicated to faculty and students conducting pioneering research into AI and machine learning. Because the facility also includes a parking structure, a current parking lot will be converted by winter into green space in the middle of the Mind, Brain and Machine Quadrangle -- which includes Luddy Hall, the Multidisciplinary Science Building II, Psychological and Brain Sciences, Geological Sciences, Myles Brand Hall and the Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence.
"At a number of recent events, I have quoted the renowned professor of landscape architecture Dayton Reuter, who wrote that 'The campus is not just leftover spaces between buildings. It is, in fact, a series of designed places that reflect the values an institution wishes to be known for.'" McRobbie said. "Indiana University wholeheartedly embraces this philosophy, as has been reflected in recent years in the creation of numerous new landscape gateways, and the addition and enhancement of public spaces, courtyards, plazas and open spaces on the Bloomington campus.
"The Mind, Brain and Machine Quadrangle will not only further enhance the beauty of the Bloomington campus, it will also enhance the multidisciplinary collaboration that already occurs between faculty and scholars in these facilities. And it will be yet another reflection of the values for which Indiana University wishes to be known."
Ground was broken for the Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence in February 2020. The building was designed by BSA Lifestructures.
"The new Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence, along with spectacular Luddy Hall and the new greenspace in the Mind, Brain and Machine Quadrangle, will be inspiring and beautiful spaces for our faculty and students to continue pushing the boundaries of knowledge with computing," said Dennis Groth, interim dean of the Luddy School.