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) …
The scope of Artificial Intelligence is much broader, including technologies like Virtual Agents, Natural Language Processing, Machine Learning Platforms and many other. The main focus in GE is on making machines smarter, leveraging machine learning to create "digital twins" – a digital replica, or data-based representation of an industrial machine. Unfortunately, SalesForce's Connected Small Business Report notes that only 21% of small businesses are currently using business intelligence and analytics. World's top technology leaders Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk are on the sceptical side of this debate, while Microsoft, Apple, Google and many others are already eagerly taking advantage of the AI technology.
On the May 8th edition of Closing Bell on CNBC, venture capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya, founder and CEO of Social Capital, created quite a stir in enterprise artificial intelligence (AI) circles, when he took on Watson, Big Blue's AI platform. "Human intelligence outperforms machine-learning applications in complex decision making routinely required during the course of care, because machines do not yet possess mature capabilities for perceiving, reasoning, or explaining," explained Ernest Sohn, a chief data scientist in Booz Allen's Data Solutions and Machine Intelligence group; Joachim Roski, a principal at Booz Allen Hamilton; Steven Escaravage, vice president in Booz Allen's Strategic Innovation Group; and Kevin Maloy, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine. "A health care organization that relies on a single EHR [Electronic Health Record] vendor's analytic solutions, as well as its own legacy analytics infrastructure created before the era of big data, may see limited progress," they continued. "While many machine-learning solutions are not yet mature and sophisticated enough to support complex clinical decisions, machine learning can be effectively deployed today to reduce more routine, time-consuming, and resource-intensive tasks, allowing freed-up personnel to be redeployed to support higher-end work."
Do you believe the warnings from folks like Prof. Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk and others? Is AI the greatest tool humanity will ever create, or are we "summoning the demon"? To quote the head of AI at Singularity University, Neil Jacobstein, "It's not artificial intelligence I'm worried about, it's human stupidity." In a recent Abundance 360 webinar, I interviewed Bryan Johnson, the founder of a new company called Kernel which he seeded with $100 million. To quote Bryan, "It's not about AI vs. humans.
Self-driving cars, virtual reality games, bioprinting human organs, human gene editing, AI personalities, 3D printing in space, three billion people connected to the Internet…. To answer some of these questions, our team decided to dig into Ray Kurzweil's 2005 book The Singularity Is Near, in which Kurzweil describes the exponential growth of technologies like artificial intelligence, genetics, computers, nanotechnology and robotics. According to Kurzweil, Moore's Law (describing the exponential growth of integrated circuits) is just one example of the law of accelerating returns, but it is perhaps the most powerful. New technology growing exponentially tends to progress deceptively slowly at first, but then its progress shoots upward and very quickly becomes disruptive.
Self-driving cars, virtual reality games, bioprinting human organs, human gene editing, AI personalities, 3D printing in space, three billion people connected to the Internet…. These incredible technological feats are all part of our world today. And while they are not evenly distributed, they are rapidly spreading and evolving -- and in the process radically changing nearly every aspect of modern life. How we eat, work, play, communicate, and travel are deeply affected by the development of new technology. But what is the underlying engine that drives technological progress?
I'm interviewing Rob Nail, but I don't know who to make eye contact with, him or his toy robot. The white-and-aquamarine bot blinking at me innocently is named Wesley. He retails for 20,000, is Wall-E cute and is roughly the size of Nail's 19-month-old son. In fact, he's oblivious to all the strange stuff surrounding us: the Oculus Rift viewing station where, moments before, I rode a virtual roller coaster; the model airplanes hanging from the ceiling; and the other robot, which retails for 14,000 and which Nail once used to stream himself to a party. Instead of, you know, actually going.
"When I talk about computers reaching human levels of intelligence, I'm not talking about logical intelligence," Kurzweil said at an event in New York on Monday night. "We're going to combine with that intelligence," Kurzweil responded. And even if Kurzweil thinks AI will probably replace many of today's workers, he's optimistic about future jobs for humans. After all, no one in 1910 could predict today's computer chip designers and website developers.
In order for someone to be transported into the future and die from the level of shock they'd experience, they have to go enough years ahead that a "die level of progress," or a Die Progress Unit (DPU) has been achieved. The character would be in a time before personal computers, internet, or cell phones--today's Marty McFly, a teenager born in the late 90s, would be much more out of place in 1985 than the movie's Marty McFly was in 1955. Kurzweil suggests that the progress of the entire 20th century would have been achieved in only 20 years at the rate of advancement in the year 2000--in other words, by 2000, the rate of progress was five times faster than the average rate of progress during the 20th century. All in all, because of the Law of Accelerating Returns, Kurzweil believes that the 21st century will achieve 1,000 times the progress of the 20th century.2 If Kurzweil and others who agree with him are correct, then we may be as blown away by 2030 as our 1750 guy was by 2015--i.e.