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) …
As Feds get smarter about Artificial Intelligence on the cyber frontier, seems agencies' IT defenders are suffering from schizophrenia about cyber cyborgs. That's the topline takeaway from the new MeriTalk "Federal Cyber AI IQ Test" study. Where 90 percent of cyber folks swoon about AI as the fix for the cyber sieve, almost half of Feds suffer AI anxiety disorder. With the exponential increase in cyber attacks and insider-threat nightmares, now's a fascinating time to consider AI's role in cybersecurity. We see Kevin Cox and the CDM program office exploring AI–and every cyber vendor's touting its new AI pixie dust.
AI also raises the prospect of affordable healthcare for all. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 400 million people do not have access to one or more essential health services, and 6% of those in low and middle-income countries are pushed further into extreme poverty because of health spending. In the future, we will see physicians working in partnership with AI – enabling technology to free up their time to concentrate on treatment of the disease as opposed to the diagnosis. Here we look at areas where AI promises to have a real impact on chronic and infectious diseases, from diagnosis and treatment plans to containing the global outbreaks of the likes of SARs and Ebola. Nearly 18 million people die each year from cardiovascular disease, according to WHO.
As a kid, I saw the 1968 version of Planet of the Apes. As a future primatologist, I was mesmerized. Years later I discovered an anecdote about its filming: At lunchtime, the people playing chimps and those playing gorillas ate in separate groups. It's been said, "There are two kinds of people in the world: those who divide the world into two kinds of people and those who don't." In reality, there's lots more of the former.
According to Gartner, 2020 will be a pivotal year in AI-related employment dynamics as artificial intelligence (AI) will become a positive job motivator. AI will create 2.3 million jobs in 2020, while eliminating 1.8 million. The number of jobs affected by AI will vary by industry: through 2019, healthcare, the public sector and education will see continuously growing job demand while manufacturing will be hit the hardest. Starting in 2020, AI-related job creation will cross into positive territory, reaching two million net-new jobs in 2025. "Many significant innovations in the past have been associated with a transition period of temporary job loss, followed by recovery, then business transformation and AI will likely follow this route," said Svetlana Sicular, research vice president at Gartner.
Hard to believe that it's only been a year since I was doing the previous end-of-year round up. So much has happened in the world of AI that it is hard to fit in a couple of paragraphs. Don't expect too many details, but do expect a lot of links to follow up on them. If I have to pick my main highlight of the year, that has to go to AlphaGo Zero (paper). Not only does this new approach improve in some of the most promising directions (e.g.
Humans may soon be able to communicate while in complete silence if a company's new'brain augmentation' technology becomes a reality. A'brain-computer interface' could mean people communicate telepathically - and are able to solve complex problems in as little as a few seconds. Implanting a microchip into your brain may sound like the plot from a science fiction blockbuster, but some claim this technology could be a reality within 15 years. A'brain-computer interface' could mean people communicate telepathically - and could solve complex problems in as little as a few seconds, an expert has claimed (stock image) Kernel is currently working on prototypes of a brain implant device for medical use in humans. The firm has started to conduct tests with epilepsy patients in hospitals.
Ask any neuroscientist to draw you a neuron, and it'll probably look something like a star with two tails: one stubby with extensive tree-like branches, the other willowy, lengthy and dotted with spindly spikes. While a decent abstraction, this cartoonish image hides the uncomfortable truth that scientists still don't know much about what many neurons actually look like, not to mention the extent of their connections. But without untangling the jumbled mess of neural wires that zigzag across the brain, scientists are stumped in trying to answer one of the most fundamental mysteries of the brain: how individual neuronal threads carry and assemble information, which forms the basis of our thoughts, memories, consciousness, and self. What if there was a way to virtually trace and explore the brain's serpentine fibers, much like the way Google Maps allows us to navigate the concrete tangles of our cities' highways? Thanks to an interdisciplinary team at Janelia Research Campus, we're on our way.
Checking for care The project is being developed as part of Microsoft's Healthcare NeXT initiative. The company's trying to find ways of offering digital healthcare experiences that let user get immediate information on common ailments. Microsoft has partnered with Aurora Health Care for its latest chatbot service, creating the "Aurora Digital Concierge" for patients. The smartphone app allows users to determine the level of care needed for their condition. By answering questions provided by the bot, the app can suggest possible causes for the symptoms being experienced.
During a 2016 simulation exercise, researchers evaluated the ability of 32 different deep learning algorithms to detect lymph node metastases in patients with breast cancer. Each algorithm's performance was then compared to that of a panel of 11 pathologists with time constraint (WTC). Overall, the team found that seven of the algorithms outperformed the panel of pathologists, publishing an in-depth analysis in JAMA. "To our knowledge, this is the first study that shows that interpretation of pathology images can be performed by deep learning algorithms at an accuracy level that rivals human performance," wrote lead author Babak Ehteshami Bejnordi, MS, Radboud University Medical Center in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, and colleagues. The simulation took place during the Cancer Metastases in Lymph Nodes Challenge 2016 (CAMELYON16) in the Netherlands.
Bryan Johnson isn't short of ambition. The founder and CEO of neuroscience company Kernel wants "to expand the bounds of human intelligence". He is planning to do this with neuroprosthetics; brain augmentations that can improve mental function and treat disorders. Put simply, Kernel hopes to place a chip in your brain. It isn't clear yet exactly how this will work.