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 technology industry and policymakers need to address public concerns about artificial intelligence (AI) which are "not the fault of AI" itself, a tech executive said Tuesday. "It is the fault of developers, so we need to solve this problem," said Song Zhang, managing director for China at global software consultancy, ThoughtWorks. Consumer worries relating to AI include concerns about personal privacy and how the systems may get out of control, said Zhang during a panel discussion discussing the "Future of AI" at CNBC's East Tech West conference in the Nansha district of Guangzhou, China. It is the duty of the tech industry and policymakers to focus on, discuss and solve such problems, said Zhang in Mandarin, according to a CNBC translation. Indeed, while consumers are curious about AI when they first come into contact with the technology, their mindset changes over time, said Rong Luo, chief financial officer of TAL Education Group.
The expectation that artificial intelligence and automation will replace a significant number of human workers in the next decade is undisputed. What kinds of jobs and how soon, however, is still being worked out. In 2015, a CEDA report suggested 40 per cent of jobs in Australia were highly "susceptible to computerisation" in the next 15 years. Last year consultancy AlphaBeta said three million Australian jobs (around a third of all jobs) were at risk by 2030. The issue is a global one.
Misconceptions swirl about what AI is, what machine learning does, its capabilities and its purpose in our society. However, our world is benefiting from the technology's implementation, and it's driving positive cultural and societal change, such as helping doctors predict the next global health outbreak or enhancing diagnosis and treatment capabilities. Yet despite these advancements, many are still concerned about AI's capabilities and how the tech will affect the future of work. Job automation, for example, has been covered tirelessly by the press, and headlines take both sides of the ever-swaying media spectrum – "AI is taking our jobs," "automation is complementary to our jobs," or "don't fear the factory robots."
Negative views of AI development predominate In a speech to the European Parliament's Science and Technology Options Assessment Group Modeas said:"If you do any research on artificial intelligence these days, the results are astonishingly pessimistic. Nine articles out of ten on AI are negative. Alarmist and panicked, sometimes even hysterical. For me, a techno-optimist, it's shocking. Commissioner Modeas is betting that AI research will be a positive force even though he admits that public fear of the technology appears to be deep.