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) …
There are certain inflection points, transitions, and cyclical patterns in technology. Mainframe to personal computer, desktop to mobile, mobile to wearables -- each pushing the center of computing back and forth, back and forth.With each of these inflections there are concurrent power shifts; IBM to Microsoft, Microsoft to Apple, Google to Amazon, and now, most recently, Apple to GE. "Technology innovation is table stakes for the internet of things transformation," GE's Chief Commercial Officer Kate Johnson said "We will need new, innovative ways to ingest and analyze mass quantities of data. Many companies are rising to this challenge – we are pleased with the plethora of new technology that is available." What this means for everyone, from the consumer to the enterprise, is that, soon, every traffic light, washing machine, toaster and train engine will be monitored, controlled and built better, on a daily basis. Over the past several years, in anticipation of a huge shift, GE has been patiently building products and a data processing platform to consume and process everything on the planet.
And for decades, the principle guiding much of the innovation in computing has been Moore's law -- a prediction, made by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore, that the number of transistors on a microprocessor chip would double every two years or so. And we can use (it) for problems that today are every expensive to execute on modern computers -- things like image recognition or voice recognition, things that today take an amazing amount of compute power to do well. "Roadmapping" Moore's law has really driven the industry in terms of making faster and smaller transistors. These domains are, for example, weather prediction, or what we call big data analytics, which is what Google does, or machine learning for recognition of voice or images, ... a lot of high-performance computing simulations, such as thermal process evolution simulations.