If we start from the basics, Artificial Intelligence or AI is a sector/ branch of science which deals with creation and execution of such machines which are self-reliant when it comes to duplicating the tendencies of being able to think and process the information which was previously known to be possessed solely by humans.
Research form the core part of artificial intelligence and is extremely technical and specialized. The core things which the researchers tackle while programming the machines are the traits of:
And the ability of manipulation of things like humans.
Artificial Intelligence came into existence as a term in the 1956 Dartmouth Conference and it was coined by a computer scientist by the name of John McCarthy.
Although the field has expanded to incorporate much more things than when it was first introduced, the basics and the fundamentals remain the same. It is an umbrella term that encompasses everything from robotic process automation to actual robotics and has gained importance recently due to the important role it plays in big data, increase in speed, size and variety of data businesses are now collecting.
There are several types of AI machinery and below mentioned is a brief about some of them:
1. Reactive Machines:
These machines solely work on the reaction to an action by the person opposite to them. These types of machines do not have a memory that they can refer to for previous experiences and work solely on the basis of best possible moves through hardcore mathematics. Eg: Deep Blue, the IBM chess program that beat the world champion, Garry Kasparov
2. Limited Memory: These machines can store short-term memory and go back to them for calculating the next move they’ll take, but the memory isn’t stored for a long term. Eg: Self-driving autonomous vehicles
3. Mind Theory: It is the understanding that others have their own beliefs, desires, and intentions that impact the decisions they make. This kind of AI does not exist as of now.
4. Awareness of the self: AI systems have a sense of self and consciousness. Machines with self-awareness understand their current state and can use the information to interpret what others are feeling.
Although the recently revealed robot Sophia has shown both third and the fourth points, they are still in the testing stage and no major production/application of the same has begun as of now.
Artificial Intelligence finds its applications in many industries such as Healthcare (IBM Watson), in business where they calculate the risks and do repetitive actions done by humans, the internet chatbots which ease customer service, in education with automated grading and marking, law by analyzing such huge bundles of documents and searching the relevant information and manufacturing with fully automated manufacturing plants which boost production multi folds.
While the future of the technology might seem bright and going in the direction of further easing human tasks and eliminating errors, there remains scepticism about how much further the technology should be allowed to develop. The global innovators like Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are on opposite sides on the topic because of the dangers it might trigger in terms of weapons industry and also there is scepticism about what may happen if we create something more intelligent than our own selves.
The future of the technology hangs in balance and it is yet to be seen which way it goes, will it go the way of sci-fi movies or will we put a limit to its growth, that remains to be seen.