If you are looking for an answer to the question What is Artificial Intelligence? and you only have a minute, then here's the definition the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence offers on its home page: "the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines."
However, if you are fortunate enough to have more than a minute, then please get ready to embark upon an exciting journey exploring AI (but beware, it could last a lifetime) …
Back in the pre-iPhone era, investors would rally around the word'mobile' as the'next big thing'. It was clear that mobility and doing things on small-screen devices would affect the lives of many for years to come, but what wasn't clear was how. How were applications going to get smart enough to add value on the go? How were web standards going to evolve fast enough to accommodate all the different kinds of devices available in the market? Which platforms across the myriad of non-compatible platforms (Symbian, WinCE, RIM, Java etc), should developers invest their time?
The Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine Learning are two of the hottest technologies of our time. At first glance, I really like some of the ideas that are being proposed by the combination of Internet of Things and Machine Learning: smart light bulbs that know when to turn themselves on and off; smart kettles that will make sure you'll have freshly made coffee at the exact time you want it without having thought about it; smart fridges that will do the grocery for you; smart locks that will recognize you and unlock with the tap of a phone. I don't have to worry about leaving the door unlocked because my smart lock will automatically lock the door when it senses that the house is empty. Combined with the power of the fast evolving VR technology, IoT will enable us to travel to distant locations, feel things, meet people and do a lot more without ever setting foot outside our homes.