Allen Institute for AI

The Allen Institute for AI (abbreviated AI2) is a research institute founded by late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. The institute seeks to achieve scientific breakthroughs by constructing AI systems[citation needed] with reasoning, learning, and reading capabilities.[1] Oren Etzioni was appointed by Paul Allen in September 2013 to direct the research at the institute.[2][3][4] After leading the organization for nine years, Oren Etzioni stepped down from his role as CEO on September 30, 2022. [5] He was replaced in an interim capacity by the leading researcher of the company's Aristo project, Peter Clark. The company's board formed a search committee for a new CEO. AI2 has programs in the University of California, Irvine,[6] and in Tel Aviv, Israel.[7]

Allen Institute for AI
Formation2014; 9 years ago (2014)
FounderPaul Allen
TypeNon-profit research institute
Key people
Oren Etzioni


  • Aristo: A flagship project of AI2, inspired by a similar project called Project Halo carried out by Seattle-based investment company Vulcan.[8] The goal is to design an artificially intelligent system that can successfully read, learn, and reason from texts and ultimately demonstrate its knowledge by providing explainable question answering. The focus of the project is explained by the guiding philosophy that artificial intelligence is about having a mental model for how things operate and refining that mental model based on new knowledge.[9][10]
  • PRIOR: A ground-breaking research project on visual knowledge extraction that capitalizes on the wealth of information available in images. PRIOR aims to create knowledge bases composed entirely of information derived from images, both static and video. The PRIOR team released the game Iconary in February 2018 as a demonstration of an AI that can understand and produce situated scenes from a limited set of icons.[11]
  • Semantic Scholar: an artificial-intelligence backed search engine for academic publications publicly released in November 2015.[12] It uses advances in natural language processing to provide summaries for scholarly papers.[13]
  • AllenNLP: AllenNLP is an open-source NLP research library built on PyTorch. AllenNLP includes model abstractions, task abstractions, declarative model for experiment design, reference implementations of high-quality models for both core NLP problems (e.g. semantic role labeling) and NLP applications (e.g. textual entailment).[14][15]
  • MOSAIC: The Mosaic project is focused on defining and building common sense knowledge and reasoning for AI systems.[16]
  • AST: The Applied Sciences & Technology teams joined AI2 from Vulcan in the second half of 2021. These teams seek to apply Artificial Intelligence solutions to problems in environmental science as well as the prevention of poaching and illegal fishing in locations around the world. [17]


In 2015 the institute partnered with Kaggle to host a competition aimed at automatically answering 8th grade level science exam questions.[18] In 2018, also partnered with the University of Washington to explore deep learning artificial intelligence designed to predict how dogs would respond to stimulus. Researchers used over 20,000 frames of video to train an AI to predict movements and learn other dog behavior.[19]

AI2 also partnered with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and the University of Washington to develop an artificial intelligence named the "Composition, Retrieval and Fusion Network" (CRAFT). After the AI was trained with a database of over 25,000 videos from the U.S. television show The Flintstones, it was able to create novel short video clips from natural language captions that resembled the cartoon.[20]

Startup incubatorEdit

The institute's startup incubator launched in 2015 with the intent to develop technologies in the artificial intelligence field.[21]

Media coverageEdit

AI2 was the subject of an in-depth article in The Verge.[9] Its launch was covered in Xconomy,[3] and GeekWire.[4] Allen and Etzioni co-authored an article for CNN about artificial intelligence and AI2 in December 2013.[22] AI2 has also been mentioned in other articles discussing the current state of and trends in artificial intelligence research.[23][third-party source needed]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "AI2: Home". Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  2. ^ "Paul G. Allen appoints Head of Artificial Intelligence Institute" (PDF). Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence. September 4, 2013. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  3. ^ a b Romano, Benjamin (September 4, 2013). "Paul Allen Hires Oren Etzioni for New Artificial Intelligence Push". Xconomy. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  4. ^ a b Cook, John (September 4, 2013). "Going beyond Siri and Watson: Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen taps Oren Etzioni to lead new Artificial Intelligence Institute". GeekWire. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  5. ^ "Oren Etzioni stepping down as CEO of Allen Institute for AI after nine years at research hub". Retrieved 2023-01-10.
  6. ^ "Irvine — Allen Institute for AI". Retrieved 2021-11-04.
  7. ^ "AI2 Israel — Allen Institute for AI". Retrieved 2021-11-04.
  8. ^ "Project Aristo". Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  9. ^ a b Brandom, Russell (October 24, 2013). "Paul Allen and the Machines: teaching the next generation of artificial intelligence". The Verge. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  10. ^ Clark; Harrison; Balasubramanian (2013). "A Study of the Knowledge Base Requirements for Passing an Elementary Science Test" (PDF). Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  11. ^ "Perceptual Reasoning and Interaction Research".
  12. ^ Eunjung Cha, Ariana (3 November 2015). "Paul Allen's AI research group unveils program that aims to shake up how we search scientific knowledge. Give it a try". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 6 November 2019. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  13. ^ Hao, Karen (November 18, 2020). "An AI helps you summarize the latest in AI". MIT Technology Review. Archived from the original on 2020-11-18. Retrieved 2021-02-16.
  14. ^ "AllenNLP". Retrieved 2019-02-16.
  15. ^ Rodriguez, Jesus (8 July 2021). "🔹🔸Edge#104: AllenNLP Makes Cutting-Edge NLP Models Look Easy". Retrieved 2021-07-09.
  16. ^ "Mosaic". Retrieved 2019-02-16.
  17. ^ "Allen Institute for AI takes over Vulcan's portfolio of environmental big-data projects". Retrieved 2023-01-10.
  18. ^ "The Allen AI Science Challenge: Is your model smarter than an 8th grader?". Kaggle. 7 October 2015.
  19. ^ Dormehl, Luke (13 April 2018). "Forget Cloning Dogs, A.I. Is The Real Way to Let Your Pooch Live Forever". Digital Trends.
  20. ^ Greene, Tristan (12 April 2018). "Researchers Trained an AI to Create Flintstones Cartoons". The Next Web.
  21. ^ John Cook (12 May 2015). "Paul Allen's Artificial Intelligence Institute launches startup incubator with top minds in AI - GeekWire". GeekWire.
  22. ^ Allen, Paul; Etzioni, Oren (December 11, 2013). "From Star Trek to Siri: How the Machine-Reading Revolution will dictate the future". CNN. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  23. ^ "News Articles — Allen Institute for AI".

External linksEdit