Artificial intelligence, more commonly referred to with its initials AI, is an area in computer science where the machine is intelligently working and reacting like humans. It is designed to learn how humans respond to things and do the same, such as responding to emails itself or being able to physically move with purpose without any human control.
For AI to learn, it needs access to information in order to be able to begin replicating it, however, AI goes beyond this and will respond to information independently and not just copy. It will be able to think for itself, using our human behaviour as its basis.
Sound like the beginning of iRobot? It’s not quite at that level and not all AI is about robots as it doesn’t need a body to exist. Each piece of new technology leaves fear in people until it becomes popular, just like the internet once did.
What are the benefits of AI?
Deals with mundane tasks
AI can sort out your day to day boring tasks that take up too much time, thus increasing your productivity and creativity. Imagine not having to start your work day replying to all those emails? Most people are worried about losing their jobs to AI but it just means humans will need to aim for educated or creative roles rather than labour or admin.
No human error
Humans always make mistakes, it’s natural and that’s why it is called ‘human error’. On the other hand, computers will make no mistakes when programmed by a human correctly.
Humans will take less risks
AI can protect humans from potential risks such as space travel. With AI thinking for itself it could explore planets for us independently meaning humans no longer have to put their life at risk to experiment with space travel. AI can find the best routes to take on the planet which is hard to see through cameras on manually controlled robots that are sent to space at the moment.
Sorts out problems
It can take over complaint teams, respond intelligently to any complaints and help customers out. This would mean shorter waiting times on the phone/chat boxes to get your answer as to why your wifi is playing up again, additionally no more grumpy customer service, just a friendly AI!
No sleep needed
AI can continue forever needing no breaks, meaning it can respond to the complaints, explore space and send emails all night while you sleep.
AI researcher’s predictions of the future:
Yoky Matsuoka suggested AI will make humans better at everything because it can help us achieve things we struggle at. Yoky gave the example of: “What if I lost a limb and can’t swim as fast, what if an AI can know how to control this robotic limb that’s now attached to me to quickly let me swim?”
The vision from Stuart Russell is that AI could solve all of life’s biggest problems such as climate change. AI would know every word written about Earth’s past and present making it quick and simple for it to come up with solutions. It would enable civilisation to move forwards perhaps by curing a disease. Could AI save the world?
AI could make elderly and disabled people have more comfortable lives according to Matthew Taylor. For example, those who need to take care of family members can have an AI take over their carer role without technically have a stranger in the house, just a caring robot who only knows how to take care of humans.
Simon Whiteson stated that we will be cyborgs in the future. He said that people have a tendency to see robots as them and humans as us, but he sees it as a joint unit. He said: “Imagine how much more productive we would be if we could augment our brains with infallible memories and infallible calculators. Imagine if skills could just be downloaded.” However, if only the rich could afford to have AI within them then what could that do to society?
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