Columnist Jennifer Jolly tries out Alexa on the Ford, peers at TVs held to walls by magnets, and tests a'smart bike'. There's the equivalent of some 43-football fields worth of space filled with gadgets at CES 2017. With that many tech toys to explore, they all start to blur together pretty quickly. Here's what I've seen so far that's made an impression. Ford is making it all possible with its SYNC 3 AppLink software, so you can use Alexa's voice commands to ask for directions, get a rundown of the top headlines, add milk to your shopping list, or catch the latest New York Times bestseller via audiobook.
That's because, to paraphrase Amazon's Jeff Bezos, artificial intelligence (AI) is "not just in the first inning of a long baseball game, but at the stage where the very first batter comes up." Look around, and you will find AI everywhere--in self driving cars, Siri on your phone, online customer support, movie recommendations on Netflix, fraud detection for your credit cards, etc. To be sure, there's more to come. Featuring 30 lectures, MIT's course "introduces students to the basic knowledge representation, problem solving, and learning methods of artificial intelligence." It includes interactive demonstrations designed to "help students gain intuition about how artificial intelligence methods work under a variety of circumstances."
Associated Press/Ahn Young-joonTV screens show the live broadcast of the Google DeepMind Challenge Match between Google's artificial intelligence program, AlphaGo, and South Korean professional Go player Lee Sedol, at the Yongsan Electronic store in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, March 15, 2016. Humans have been taking a beating from computers lately. The 4-1 defeat of Go grandmaster Lee Se-Dol by Google's AlphaGo artificial intelligence (AI) is only the latest in a string of pursuits in which technology has triumphed over humanity. Self-driving cars are already less accident-prone than human drivers, the TV quiz show Jeopardy! is a lost cause, and in chess humans have fallen so woefully behind computers that a recent international tournament was won by a mobile phone. There is a real sense that this month's human vs AI Go match marks a turning point.
When it comes to the future of artificial intelligence, the ultimate battle between man and machine may come to mind -- but that's really the stuff of science fiction. AI actually has a presence in our daily lives on a much more useful and less apocalyptic level. Think personal assistant devices and apps like Alexa, Cortana and Siri, web search predictions, movie suggestions on Netflix and self-driving cars. The term "artificial intelligence" was coined back in 1956. It describes a machine's ability to perform intelligent behavior such as decision-making or speech recognition.
In recent years, we've seen a resurgence in AI, or artificial intelligence, and machine learning. Machine learning has led to some amazing results, like being able to analyze medical images and predict diseases on-par with human experts. Google's AlphaGo program was able to beat a world champion in the strategy game go using deep reinforcement learning. Machine learning is even being used to program self driving cars, which is going to change the automotive industry forever. Imagine a world with drastically reduced car accidents, simply by removing the element of human error.