What is Artificial Intelligence?
Artificial intelligence works on the principle of human intelligence. The machines are programmed in such a way that they think like humans and can imitate our actions. They can be designed to execute all types of tasks from complex to simple ones. The primary task machines can perform are learning, reasoning and perception.
AI evolves basically around 2 stages of the learning process:
1. Artificial Narrow Intelligence
Also known as Weak AI, the machines are designed to perform a specific set of tasks. At this stage, the machine does not possess any thinking ability, they just perform a set of pre-defined functions. Almost all artificial machines built to date fall under this category.
Examples: Siri, Alexa, Self-driving cars, Google search
2. Artificial General Intelligence
Also known as Strong AI, the evolution of Artificial Intelligence in this stage would be such that machines possess the ability to think, act and make decisions just like humans.
There are no current examples of AI which fall under this category, but it is believed that soon we will be able to create machines that are as smart as humans. Strong AI is considered to be the biggest threat to humans by many scientists including Stephen Hawking who stated that:
“The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race…. It would take off on its own, and re-design itself at an ever-increasing rate. Humans, who are limited by slow biological evolution, couldn’t compete and would be superseded”.
How does Artificial Intelligence Work?
AI uses techniques that permit the extraction of relations from a vast amount of data. Once you know those relations and how we can make the best use of it, algorithms are designed and stored. The machine uses those programmed scenarios for decision making.
Nowadays, AI techniques are becoming so advanced that relations can also be extracted from language, images, data and subsequently you can make predictions. As computers can store data in large quantities, you can keep data and make relations based on things that humans can do, but also data that usually humans cannot do.
Basic Components of Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence has become one of the most talked topics in this digital era. Researchers are investing a large sum of money and time to make the machines function in a better, more accurate way. The algorithms are designed in such a way that machines respond similarly to humans in any situation.
With the increasing demand for the machine equipped with AI, some of the core components which should be incorporated while designing machines are :
1. Machine learning: a feature of AI that provides computer systems with the ability to automatically learn and improve from previous experience without being explicitly programmed. Machine learning focuses on the development of algorithms that can analyze data and have the capability to make predictions.
Example: Prediction on what you may also like when you search a movie on IMDB.
2. Deep learning: employs artificial neural networks that keep learning constantly by processing both negative and positive data. Artificial neural networks are made to mimic the human brain. The machine uses multiple artificial neural network layers to determine and output from many inputs provided.
Example: Face recognition, Speak recognition
3. Natural Language Processing: the capability of the machine to understand human language as it is spoken. This will make it possible for humans to talk to machines. It is quite challenging to develop NLP applications as computers require humans to speak to them in a programming language. But the developers have made it happen to a certain extent.
Example: Chatbots, Alexa, Siri
Another application of NLP is in the software testing domain where applications are tested in a plain natural language without any coding.
Example: Testsigma’s simple scriptless approach to testing.
Check out more about NLP based test development.
4. Understanding Images/Computer Vision: is an integral component of AI that enables computers to identify, process and interpret visual data. This technique is based on pattern identification to interpret the content of an image including graphs, tables, and pictures within documents, text and videos. This technology has brought a revolution in the field of healthcare.
Examples: Machines can evaluate human X-Ray scans
Why is the Application of Artificial Intelligence the Future of Business?
Artificial intelligence is one of the emerging technologies that is finding its way in all sectors of industry. While AI has been used for a while now, recent enhancement has made the technology much more innovative and adaptable. Seeking into the future, it’s easy to predict a world in which artificial intelligence plays a more significant role in our daily lives.
According to Statista, the growth of the companies in 2018 using AI technology has been immense across the globe.
The example of some industries/sectors which would make a big mark by using artificial intelligence techniques in the near future are listed below:
1. Healthcare: AI can bring a revolution in the healthcare sector. As per the prediction, AI would be a game-changer and completely reshape the healthcare landscape for the better. It would be incorporated in performing automated operations, predictive diagnostics, and precision surgery. Some of the applications based on Artificial intelligence that is being widely used in healthcare include:
- Managing medical records and other data
- Digital consultation
- Treatment design
- Medical management
- Virtual nurses
- Precision medicine
According to reports by Frost & Sullivan, the healthcare AI market is likely to experience a compound annual growth rate of 40% by 2021. It has the potential to change healthcare outcomes by 30-40% and cut treatment costs by half.
2. Streamlined Supply chain:
The introduction of AI into the supply chain can be of great help in the world of e-commerce. Supply chain management consists of many people, including suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and customers.
There are many business processes that can be optimized using artificial intelligence (AI). Some of those vital areas of supply management system where AI can make the process more efficient, simple and easy are
- Streamlined demand, Supply, and Inventory chain: AI can help to manage the flow of goods throughout the supply chain, ensuring that raw materials and products are in the right place at the right time.
- Forecast Demand before products are needed: AI can help source, process and analyze data from different areas and predict future demand based on analyzed data.
- Automate Vehicles in Distribution Centers and Other Logistics Operations: AI programmed robotic vehicles following the most efficient routes can be used to store and pick items. In the near future, trucks may even become fully autonomous, reducing reliance on human drivers.
- Optimizing warehouse: AI would be able to analyze warehouse processes, optimize sending, receiving, storing, picking and management of individual products. Thus making the life of humans easy.
3. Customer Service: is an integral part of any business. Using AI for automating customer service activities can help provide quicker and better responses to customers’ queries. There are many areas where AI can be a game-changer in customer service thus providing better customer experience and enhanced brand reputation.
a. Greater customer support: Unlike humans, with the help of AI applications, companies can provide customers with support round-the-clock. As machines can work during weekends, holidays and after hours. The customer services using AI are usually provided by Chatbots. While automated chatbots can only reply with predefined functions, AI-powered chatbots can continually learn from previous experiences to offer better support.
On top of that, Chatbots will never get angry or frustrated with customers and can be programmed to elevate issues or unknown questions to human managers. There are many applications like Chatbots which help in providing better user experience.
Example: If you are working on an application that handles properties for your clients, the best property management solutions will come equipped with artificial intelligence that can streamline and improve customer experience.
b. Better and personalized sales and service journey: compared to humans, AI can collect and analyze data more effectively and efficiently. Machine learning can access in-depth information which helps companies gain a deeper and better understanding of their customers. Hence, Customer service when augmented with other AI technology can produce individually tailored customer experiences.
4. AI in Mobile Application development: over the decade mobile application and its development have changed completely. The apps designed are more user-centric. The current generation completely depends on the mobile app for performing the maximum task of day to day life. The use of AI in apps development and AI in testing has enabled the app to mimic human intelligence. Below-discussed are some AI technology can be used in app development for a smarter and better experience:
- Enhanced customer satisfaction by studying human patterns: The applications are integrated with algorithms that study human patterns and make recommendations based on their search request. By offering personalized products/services, the customer experience would be enhanced and subsequently would contribute to sales.
- Simplification of the app features: These days applications are integrated with chatbot features such as Siri, Alexa is becoming very popular. For most App development companies, use of AI is only limited to simplifying authentication processes such as face recognition and fingerprint. There is still more which AI can offer in enhancing the video and audio recognition abilities in a mobile device. This area can be seriously worked on by developers.
- Optimize the searching process: The user experience becomes much more memorable if the app helps them in recommending suggestions, spelling corrections, and add a voice search when AI is integrated into a search engine.
Benefits of Artificial Intelligence
- AI machines make decisions based on previous experience, learning and stored information thus the chances of error gets reduced and results are obtained with maximum precision.
- AI if programmed properly, has a lesser chance of committing common mistakes that humans may commit while automating a process.
- Available 24*7, unlike humans the machine does require breaks, leaves, or weekends off and can be made to work around the clock with the same efficiency.
- AI-equipped devices can think logically without emotions, making rational decisions with almost no mistakes.
- They can work in hostile environments and complete tasks that can be dangerous to human life such as mining, digging without being affected.
- AI can play a vital role in the tasks which are repetitive, tedious and monotonous if performed by humans. As machines do not get bored and don’t require entertainment.
The Disadvantages of Artificial Intelligence
- Lots of dependency on AI machines might lead to humans losing their mental capabilities. For eg usage of smartphones have to any extent led to it.
- The huge cost of development and massive time is required to build, rebuild and repair any AI-equipped devices
- AI devices will not be able to show their thinking capabilities outside the areas they are programmed for which humans can.
- They can never ever possess technological perceptions and creativity that humans have.
- They tend to make humans lazy.
Artificial intelligence is not to replace existing processes but to improve them wherever necessary and help us work in a smarter way. Tech is not yet user-friendly and perhaps might never be, hence a user-friendly AI will not be an easy job to create.
AI can be a big helping hand to humans in the near future but they can’t replace humans. It can help eliminate or significantly reduce mindless and repetitive tasks and increase productivity exponentially.
In the near future, application of artificial intelligence will not be limited to only solving ‘problems faced by businesses’ but also to solving ‘social issues’ that the world is facing. Here’s a blog that discusses how Artificial Intelligence can help us solve social issues.
Embrace the AI-equipped future!! It would be a great help to humans.