For a technology that's decades old, artificial intelligence managed to emerge in the public imagination as one of the signature technologies of 2018 -- if not always in a positive way. On the upside, AI and its related sets of technology such as machine learning and deep learning enable now-taken-for-granted services such speech recognition in smartphones and devices such as Amazon.com Inc.'s Echo and Google LLC's Home, not to mention self-driving cars, better disease diagnoses and, less obvious but at least as impactful, more automated information technology infrastructure in the cloud and data centers. At the same time, AI has been used to target people with fake news, discriminate against certain kinds of workers or customers and stoked fears, albeit likely overblown, that machines could make most jobs obsolete before too long. Not least, some leading lights such as Tesla Inc. Chief Executive Elon Musk and the late physicist Stephen Hawking have raised concerns, still hotly debated, that runaway AI could threaten human existence.
Jan-12-2019, 18:02:02 GMT