Can We Rely On AI?

Publication Date: Sep 13, 2021
 
Can we rely on AI?

Article by Claude Calleja Executive at eSkills Malta Foundation

Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are becoming increasingly complex as they are used in more and more areas of our lives to create forecasts and prediction models.  Several companies are using technological advancements in Machine Learning (ML), natural language processing and other forms of AI to make relevant and immediate recommendations for their customers. Modern technologies based on ML and AI are being adopted by the robotics industry to develop robots that can work autonomously and overcome all the challenges they face on the move.

By prioritising technology solutions that enable them to harness the power of artificial intelligence, companies can instantly provide potential buyers with bespoke content and relevant information about them in a virtual world. 

One company that has succeeded in this approach is a renowned tailor, who uses AI in partnership with human stylists to select clothes for its customers. In fact, we found that people accept AI recommendations when it works in partnerships with humans. 

Human concierges with AR headsets that tell them what customers want before they ask are already in the making.  Given the scepticism of the leaders in modern AI research and the diverse nature of modern narrow AI systems, there is little reason to worry that general artificial intelligence will disrupt society anytime soon.  Many see AI as increasing human capacity, but some predict the opposite: that as people become increasingly dependent on machine-controlled networks, their ability to think for themselves, act independently of automated systems, and interact with one another will be undermined.

AI is a series of systems, developments and techniques that enable machines to calculate actions and data sets. It is a constellation of many different technologies that work together to enable machines to sense, understand, act, and learn at a human intelligence level.  While Hollywood films and science fiction novels often portray AI as human-like robots conquering the world, the current evolution of AI technology is not scary, but intelligent. 

As we have more and more data, machine learning tools have only improved. This ability to process rapid, enormous amounts of data, refine information and find connections is causing AI technology to proliferate.  Scientists are using AI to manage data-intensive terrain, refine climate science, make more accurate predictions, and enable society and nature to adapt to the future. 

Popular search engines now make recommendations based on the text you enter. Your search engine uses artificial intelligence to predict what you are trying to find to give you better information. When one uses maps apps on their phone to navigate, artificial intelligence reads numerous data points and provides the user with updated traffic information in real-time.  Statistical machine translation methods are used to find patterns in billions of words of translated text, such as United Nations books and records, and then applies these patterns to new translations.    

Analysts expect people to become increasingly reliant on connected artificial intelligence and increasingly complex digital systems.  Nevertheless, if we implement these systems wisely, we can continue the historic arc of improving everyday life with positive results.  

This article was prepared by collating various publicly available online sources.