Every week we are flooded with articles about how Artificial Intelligence (AI) will change our future and the way we carry out our daily tasks. Yet does it really belong to the future? Have you ever stopped to think that maybe it’s already here?
This morning on my way to work my phone pinged with a suggestion of a shorter route to my destination; when I opened my computer my virtual assistant Amy Ingram had already scheduled this week’s meetings and tasks; lately Gmail has been making more accurate suggestions about whom to include in my emails and even what to reply; my timeline on Facebook is getting increasingly intuitive on its article suggestions; I seem to be relying more than ever on AccuWeather for the weather, Wikipedia for lookups and my beloved Yummly for what to cook.
We’re reaching a turning point and Artificial Intelligence is not a thing of tomorrow but of today; AI is acquiring an important role in society and is presently influencing a big part of our daily life. Indeed it will increasingly become even more dominant.
The Internet of Things is one of the biggest technology frontiers of the 21st century with exciting implications. For instance, it will turn on the coffee machine when your alarm goes off; or, it is the foundation for connected smart cities. IoT depends on AI’s analysis and parsing of big data to do so.
So far we have been discussing and analyzing how AI affects marketing and business, the health sector, hospitality, the military and defense, the governmental sector and so on. However, AI will increasingly affect simple tasks in our daily life -and already does for that matter- such as driving, listening to music, finding recipes, choosing what to wear or even making coffee.
Only last week various new articles wrote about changes brought by Artificial Intelligence. For instance, we read about how a Microsoft AI program achieved the 999.990 perfect score in PacMan; for the first time someone managed to beat the game and it wasn’t a human. Similarly, data scientists from Adelaide University in Australia have built an AI system that can predict with 70% accuracy when you’re going to die. On the lighter side, George Tech music technology center’s Shimon is a four armed marimba playing robot; a deep learning software mining a dataset of 5000 songs generates the music Shimon plays. Although his music might sound a bit avant-garde and abstract he is nonetheless playing original compositions. When it comes to sport, in the beginning of the year Unanimous’ Swarm AI correctly predicted the exact score for the Super Bowl.
A full Hollywood-style AI system that can work and relate to human experience on its own is not here yet. For broad and more complex tasks or even for human intelligence level tasks, we may have to wait for decades, whatever some of the all-too-human hype suggests. But if we consider AI in its narrow, task-related, machine intelligence form, well, the news is that it’s already here. And getting better. And better.