The integration of artificial intelligence (AI) into businesses is no longer new. Task automation and chatbots are rapidly becoming the norm, cropping up across industries seeking increased efficiencies. But AI's potential extends far beyond menial tasks, and companies are now looking to leverage AI in a way that yields a competitive edge.
Last Friday, the government revealed how the budget for more investment in cutting-edge technology and innovation would be split, with business secretary Greg Clark announcing that robotics and AI will be receiving £93 million as part of the government's £1 billion Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund – impacting a range of sectors, including healthcare.
If artificial intelligence (AI) is the future, the future is now, and it's all around us. Despite what science fiction and futuristic fantasy may have you believe, AI isn't all about recreating human consciousness. Rather, it's a practical, efficient way to help business technology get smarter as a product gains traction. AI allows companies to use insights from a large community of users to continually improve upon their products.
Though still in its infancy, artificial intelligence already is changing the world. However, it's not just about what the technology itself can do, but what it enables people to do -- what new doors it can open. AI presents government agencies with new opportunities to innovate that previously may have been impossible.
In a time of "America First," the benefits of space travel are clouded by the smoke of hyperbole. In reality, there has been over 2,000 inventions courtesy of NASA that are making our lives better here on Earth. Every day, we benefit as much from the journey as from the destination. These innovations include new medicines developed in zero gravity; faster autonomous transportation technologies; and groundbreaking advances in computing (launched above the clouds). The map below illustrates the number of commercial endeavors that have spun out of the nation's space program since 1976:
"According to merriam-webster.com, the simple definition of artificial intelligence: 'an area of computer science that deals with giving machines the ability to seem like they have human intelligence; the power of a machine to copy intelligent behavior.'" Ready or not, artificial intelligence is here; and it's here to stay. Businesses and organizations that have taken an early lead in the adoption and use of artificial intelligence (be it natural language processing, machine learning, deep learning, or cognitive computing) are simply scratching the surface of its potential to not only improve sales, service, marketing and operations, but to discover and deliver new digital business models.