Artificial Intelligence (AI) is already revolutionizing the world. Let’s explore what AI is and how it impacts daily life, from work to healthcare and even online activities. AI, though not familiar to everyone, has been around since the 1950s, coinciding with the birth of computers. It pervades our lives. A report forecasts AI software reaching $62 billion in 2022, a 21.3% increase from 2021. But where is AI? When Facebook, YouTube, or any website suggests content based on your browsing history, or when Gmail auto-completes your sentences, these are AI examples already integrated into daily life. So, what exactly is AI? AI researchers describe it as a bridge between humans and technology, enabling communication with computers through speech and text, much like with other humans. In essence, AI is technology that mimics human learning, reasoning, perception, problem-solving, and language usage. The learning process in AI machines resembles that of a child. AI is trained with principles and patterns; based on this information, AI systems make decisions. Initially, AI mastered games like chess through rules and patterns, evolving over time to become more sophisticated.
Unlike the human brain, AI doesn’t possess neurons. Instead, it utilizes programs and algorithms provided by humans. As AI evolves, experts like BeenaAmmanath foresee its capability to solve otherwise unsolvable or challenging problems. Understanding what AI is, the next step is recognizing where it operates. Truthfully, it’s omnipresent in daily life, from collision control in cars to autonomous vehicles. While self-driving cars currently use AI to some extent, future advancements might allow passengers to relax while the car drives itself. In workplaces, a 2018 survey revealed that 60% of examined companies utilized AI software, from search engines to plagiarism detectors. Virtually no industry operates without some form of AI technology. AI is also prevalent in healthcare, aiding doctors in diagnosing tumors and swiftly organizing patient data and test results. Moreover, AI contributes to managing the mechanized processes of the ongoing industrial revolution, facilitating the handling of vast amounts of data and performing rapid calculations.
AI has the potential to advance various industries such as healthcare, medicine, computing, and accounting services. According to Ammanath, leveraging diverse AI tools can harness the human-to-machine connection, creating models that learn more effectively. AI’s benefits include analyzing complex information, reducing human biases in decision-making, and bolstering security measures for increased transparency.
However, every technology has its downsides. As we delve into this new technological landscape, ethical concerns arise. Ammanath emphasizes that the ethical implications and risks of AI depend on its usage. As machines become more intelligent, complete control may become challenging, allowing malevolent use. Trust in AI isn’t absolute; hence, autonomous cars always require a human override option. Concerns also exist about potential job displacement despite AI creating new jobs. Experts categorize AI’s gradual advancement into five levels based on the machine’s intelligence and maturity. Currently at level 2, AI makes decisions based on human-provided information. Scientists foresee level 5 where robotic machines may replicate human functions and potentially replace humans in certain roles. A concerning issue is AI’s reliance on big data, significantly impacting privacy.
—The writer is associated with IIUI ([email protected]).
views expressed are writer’s own.