Udacity Announces School of AI
Written by Sue Gee   
Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Udacity Intersect 2018 is taking place today at the Computer History Museum with the theme of Lifelong Learning. In its keynote Udacity CEO Vish Makhijani announced new and expanded industry partnerships leading to both new virtual opportunities and new funding and a new School of AI.


Introducing the School of AI on the Udacity blog, Christian Plagemann, VP of Learning, Udacity writes:

The likelihood that within 5 years you will be applying some form of AI, machine learning, or algorithm-based technology in your job—no matter what your job may be—is increasing every day. Whether you’re a programmer interested in Python, or a farmer interested in agricultural robotics, AI is on your career horizon. Healthcare is abuzz with new reports suggesting staggering increases in the number of lives that can be saved through the use of AI. Legal and security experts are predicting dramatic decreases in online exploitation and fraud thanks to AI. Education innovators envision virtual teachers helping to bring the classroom to underserved areas across the planet. Everyone from marketers to manufacturers is looking to the future and seeing the potential of AI.

The School of AI is particularly fitting given that Udacity's roots are the 2011 Introduction to AI Class taught by Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig. It intends to offer:

a comprehensive learning experience covering everything from Python programming and algorithm fundamentals to computer vision and natural language processing specializations

It is launching with three new Nanodegree programs:

  • AI Programming with Python - a single 2-month term costing $399 ($299 for enrollments prior to April 3, 2018)

  • Computer Vision (built in collaboration with NVIDIA and Affectiva) - a single 3-month term costing $799 ($599 for enrollments prior to April 10, 2018)

  • Natural Language Processing (built in collaboration with Amazon Alexa and IBM Watson) - a single 3-month term costing $799 ($599 for enrollments prior to April 10, 2018)

The core Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree program has been restructured and is now to be a single 3-month term costing $799 ($599 for enrollments prior to April 17, 2018). Later this year, in collaboration with Unity and NVIDIA, a fourth new School of AI program, on Reinforcement Learning, will be launched.


The first of Vish Makhijani's announcements was of the creation of the KUKA Udacity Robot Learning Lab at KIT. As showcased in this video by partnering with KUKA (specialists in the field of robotics and automation technology), and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Udacity will enable its robotics students worldwide to interact with real industrial robots through a remote interface:



For Udacity students on its Flying Car and Self Driving Car programs the new facility announced at Intersect 2018 is Udacity Universe,  a shared virtual world allowing them to control a variety of vehicles in what is described as a lifelike, smart environment. Developed in conjunction with Unity Technologies (creators of Unity, the real-time development platform); Zipline (lifesaving deliveries by drone); WRLD (3D maps and indoor visualization platform) and Dubai Future Foundation Udacity Universe is an interactive simulator where students will develop and coordinate self-driving and self-flying fleets to tackle complex mobility and transportation challenges. It is intended to serve as a testing ground for systems thinking and forward-thinking urban planning, being described as:

a playground of the mind, where one explores the possibilities of a world where the borders between road and sky no longer exist.




The final announcement is of a new WeChat Nanodegree Program, being created in partnership with Tencent to teach students in China how to build apps in WeChat which has 1 billion monthly active users. Tencent is providing 1 Million RMB in scholarship funds to support lifelong learners in China who wish to enroll in this new program. udacityintesectsq




More Information

Udacity School of AI 

Announcements from Intersect 2018

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Artificial Intelligence Engineer Nanodegree From Udacity

Udacity's Flying Car Nanodegree About To Lift Off

Udacity and Unity Expand AR/VR Training

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Last Updated ( Friday, 27 March 2020 )