If you have heard the term artificial intelligence (AI) more than hundred times and you’re still not sure what does it really mean or how it can influence the modern life, you’re not alone. While the hype of AI and its potential impact on our lives is pervasive, there are limited information and insights into what we can do to truly reap its benefits. This blog post will be an effort to demystify the concept (AI) and its potential applications in human life.
What artificial intelligence really mean?
AI is a diverse branch of computer science which focuses on empowering machines and enabling them to perform tasks that require human intelligence. It enables machines to learn from experience, data, and changing circumstances. A chess-playing computer is a great example of how a machine can act like humans and process a great deal of complicated information. While a computer can easily outsmart a human in terms of data processing capabilities, it’s still impossible to create something equivalent to human intelligence.
Artificial intelligence is an effort to replicate human intelligence in a machine. Take self-driving car as an example. The English Oxford Living Dictionary explains AI: “The theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.”
When the term artificial intelligence first coined by John McCarthy in 1956, it was defined around the concept “thinking machines”. Alan Turing, a well-known mathematician, asked the world a simple question: can machines think”? That question established the vision and goal of artificial intelligence.
AI vs Machine Learning vs Deep learning
Misuse of these terms often makes it difficult to differentiate them. While many use these three terms interchangeably, there’s a considerable difference how machine learning (ML) or deep learning (DL) is not quite the same thing as AI.
Simply put, deep learning is a subset of machine learning, which is just a stream of AI. While AI is a comprehensive concept, the function of ML is to empower a machine with the ability to learn, a method for realizing AI. Deep learning is the most refined form of ML.
Algorithms capable of deep learning use human information processing patterns, just like the way human beings classify information.
The impact of artificial intelligence on our lives
AI is completely reshaping our day-to-day lives in numerous ways. From education to business, we can see AI rapidly creeping into many of aspects of human life. A few years ago, AI was just a fancy term, but now we can experience this technology as a reality and an inseparable part of modern life.
People use more AI than they actually realize. While only 33% of consumers think they use AI-enabled technology, 77% actually use an AI-powered service or device.
Futurists, movie makers, and science fiction authors have been trying to predict the incredible changes artificial intelligence can bring about. AI hasn’t done anything shown in literature; however, we can still see AI almost everywhere in a number of aspects of our daily lives.
In a survey, 61% of respondents suggested that AI will make the world a better place. From automatic parking features in vehicles to sensors in cameras that help us take good pictures, AI is making life easier. Let’s try to evaluate the impact of AI on the following industries:
Education has demonstrated an unlimited potential to utilize new technologies such as AI and augmented reality. Innovation helps educators improve and accelerate the learning process. Tedious tasks like grading take up a significant amount of time. AI can also help perform mundane administrative tasks like admission and grading.
While it’s difficult to completely replace educators activities with AI capabilities, AI-enabled software can help automate fill-in-the-blanks and multiple choice testing system. Machine-assisted academic solutions and adaptive learning can help students at different levels studying together in one classroom.
Students have more access to internet-enabled devices than ever, and IT companies are increasingly capitalizing on this by developing sophisticated learning software that simply gamifies the entire learning process. AI is truly helping the world materialize the concept of personalized learning.
The use of AI in educational applications is still in its infancy stage. In the future, nevertheless, a balanced combination of human expertise and artificial intelligence tutoring will allow students to learn any subject at their own speed and time no matter their location.
Related: How AI Impacts Education
The far and wide use of AI in advertising and marketing has opened up new doors for businesses enabling agile product development and personalization. When asked about expectations for marketing technology providers to have native AI capabilities, more than 50% of respondents said it was important or a must-have.
Advertisers now use AI capabilities to design customer experience. For example, natural language processing is making it possible for companies to use customer service chatbots, while deep learning can recognize and sort images posted on Snapchat. Here are some of the applications of AI in advertising:
● Ad targeting
● AI-generated content
● Programmatic media buying
● Predictive customer experience
● Propensity modeling
A common man rarely notices how AI is enhancing advertising innovation. For example; Google adapts and generates results based on users’ location and other preferences; Siri helps users in accordance with a user’s command and needs.
Algorithms used by Facebook is a kind of AI that predicts which ad or piece of content certain users are likely to visit. While AI is enabling marketers to launch measurable and highly personalized campaigns, the future of many advertising jobs and companies have become uncertain. Advertisers whose job is to report and change bids are more vulnerable. The only way to survive is to adapt and adjust according to changing advertising landscape.
When it comes to the healthcare sector, artificial intelligence has shown great potential in improving the way patients are diagnosed and operated. With the help of AI, diagnosis of various complex diseases will be quick and efficient. As clinical trials get more accurate and faster, new drugs will be available at a breakneck pace.
While it is still not feasible to have AI-dependent health care, tech companies are actively working towards eliminating the fears of mismanaged care and machine error. Healthcare providers and governments have already shown willingness to invest in AI-based healthcare solutions. Here is how AI can help the healthcare industry:
● AI-assisted robotic surgery
● Virtual nursing assistants
● Workflow and administrative tasks
● Drug creation
● Image analysis
● Precision medicine
Despite the countless potential benefits of AI, the wrong use of technology can create a great mess for the human race. Speaking at MIT in 2014, Elon Musk expressed the very fear by calling AI as humanity’s biggest existential threat. However, the kind of destruction intelligent machines cause in the movies is nothing more than fiction at this point in time.
Artificial intelligence will continue to have a positive impact on our lives in the future. It’s high time for companies to develop AI-based tools to streamline their business processes in order to stay ahead of the curve.