The two men posing for photographs in a Nanjing conference room could not have more different backgrounds. On one side was Mao Yongqing, head of the 28th Research Institute of China Electronics Technology Group, which develops electronic warfare technology for the People's Liberation Army. On the other was Yin Shiming, vice-president of cloud computing at Baidu, one of China's privately owned internet groups.
Mr Mao is one of a small group of state cadres entrusted by China's leader Xi Jinping with pushing the military into the era of artificial intelligence. Mr Yin is an engineer who built his expertise at some of the most important western tech companies, including Apple.