Artificial Intelligence(AI): Re-Imagine Intelligence
Over the holidays, my wife and I watched Indian Tamil science fiction movie Robot. In this film a scientist invented and controlled an android robot called “Chitti” created by the lead actor (Rajnikanth). This robot is given the ability to understand and communicate human emotions and it writes romantic poems expressing his emotions using it’s artificial intelligence. This movie was an Imaginary representation of artificial intelligence. Many Hollywood movies also share the similar vision of future.
In real consumer world, we are limited to Apple Siri, Fully automated washing machines and Roomba when it comes to AI. This somehow seem to implicate that we are far away from fairy land of AI as depicted by various movies, however my opinion differs from this general notion, After going through 60 year long history of AI comparing from first AI lab that was established in MIT, our recent progress has been far better, and highly capable computers and handheld devices are just leading our way.
As the passing time definition of AI has also evolved. As per as classical definition of AI “AI is an art of making biologically observable intelligent machines with help of science and engineering”, makes our growth look very small but current view of AI is simpler “AI is an art of creating intelligent machines or system to make human interaction simpler.”, shows promising prospects and progress.
I remember few years back Mr. N Chandrasekaran (CEO & MD, TCS) referring digital five forces (mobility, big data, social media, cloud computing and robotics) which later was detailed on Knowledge@Wharton is being advanced by more than 2000 startups and established corporations. However such advancement are mere “tip of the iceberg” for their role in AI advancement. This challenge is going to present an opportunity for entrepreneurs to drive innovation and bridge this gap. In future, “AI in business will provide same impact that ‘Human’ and ‘ Five forces’ together are giving today”.
Even though the exact path AI will take is still unknown but the kind of investment Big brothers like Apple buying Perceptio, VocalIQ, Emotient, Google buying Deep Mind, Microsoft’s project Oxford , FB Zuckerberg recruited deep learning expert Yann LeCun to set up the AI headquarters. Intel buying Saffron, Amazon Web Service, LinkedIn and PayPal to form open source AI are few examples that makes matter very serious, And just the top 5 IT companies have invested more than 2 Billion dollars on this field.
India information technology giants share the same responsibility and opportunities in this area. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has ‘Ignio‘ a neural science-based automation platform that optimizes IT operations, Wipro empowering ‘Holmes’ by acquisition of Vicarious, Infosys has AiKiDo that will focus on AI, knowledge-based IT and design, and HCL with DryICE. However the service mindset and “reactive innovation” still remains their biggest challenge. I see this as an opportunity for these companies to start believing that they can make larger impact on technology innovation landscape and lead the way.
Young brigades are trying to use AI in wide spectrum of problems from simple daily tasks to complex business scenarios. From India-based InMobi’s artificial intelligence discovery platform, USA-based MetaMind’s sentiment analysis and Enclitic’s medical imaging, India based Arya.ai making machines intelligent for professional decision-making, China-based Mobvoi defining next generation of human-machine interaction in consumer products, Taiwan-based Appier’s cross-screen solutions and India-based niki.ai’s developing AI-powered chat bots are just few examples where complexity of AI is being used to make the world an easier place.
Transformative power of AI is beyond its current imaginations like self-driving cars, more accurate weather predictions, Cyber Crime or space exploration. We can use power of AI to make Mankind safer & better, make healthcare advancements, Oil and Mining, Hazardous work places, War fronts and the list goes on.
With this good story and hope, we must remember in every romantic movie we have ‘Villain’, we must acknowledge and be cautious about misuse of AI as professor Stephen Hawking says, “Computers will overtake humans with AI within the next 100 years. When that happens, we need to make sure the computers have goals aligned with ours. Our future is a race between the growing power of technology and the wisdom with which we use it.”