Artificial Intelligence (Al) is an area, which has over half a century of history. AI began in earnest with the emergence of the computers during the late 1940s. It was the ability of these machines to store a large amount of data and process it into information at very high speed, hitherto unimaginable, that gave researchers the vision of building systems which could imitate/emulate some, if not all, human abilities. While some groundwork had already been initiated earlier, it was not until the 1980s that AI received popular economic and managerial acclaim. It was during this period that Al went through the transition from a primary research area to potential commercial applications. It was only then that Al was accepted as an emerging technology and as such attracted considerable attention. Al system does not replace people. They liberate experts from solving common/simple problems, leaving the experts to solve complex problems. AI system helps to avoid making same mistakes and to respond quickly and effectively to a new problem situation.
Before moving into further discussion about Al, it would be desirable to compare and understand the attributes of Natural (Human) Intelligence and Artificial (Machine) Intelligence.
Artificial Intelligence Meaning
Artificial Intelligence is a technology, which helps/facilitates the application of computers to areas that require knowledge, perception, reasoning, understanding and cognitive abilities, which distinguish the human behavior from machines like computers. It is the science and engineering of making intelligent devices, unusually smart computer programs. It is related to the similar task of using computers to understand human intelligence. Before moving into the further discussion about Al, it would be desirable to compare and understand the attributes of Natural (Human) Intelligence and Artificial (Machine) Intelligence.
Pre-Requisites of AI
To be artificially intelligent and to be able to come out with human-like responses the computer must possess the following requisite features:
1. Understand what “common sense” is.
2. Understand “facts” and relationships among “facts”.
3. Be able to manipulate “qualitative” data.
4. Be able to deal with exceptions and discontinuity.
5. Be able to interface with humans in a “free-format” fashion.
6. Be able to deal with new situations based on previous learning.
Artificial Intelligence Definitions
There are several definitions of Al. The following are some of them. According to George Luger and William Stubblefield, “AI is a branch of computer science that is concerned with the automation of intelligent behavior.” Hussein Bidgoli defines Al as “a series of related technologies that attempt to simulate and reproduce the human behavior, including thinking, speaking, feeling and reasoning.”
Artificial Intelligence is a division of computer science regarded with the study and creation of computer systems that exhibit some form of intelligent systems that learn new concepts and tasks. Systems that can reason and draw useful conclusions about the world around us, systems that can understand natural languages and perceive and comprehend a visual scene and systems that perform other types of feats that require human types of intelligence.
Artificial Intelligence Canvas
Al today not only focuses on computer science and computers but encompasses a group of related technologies and specialty areas like:
• Expert systems
• Fuzzy logic
• Intelligent agents
• Natural language processing
• Neural networks
• Speech recognition
• Vision-recognized systems
• Learning systems
Nielson, a pioneer in the field of AI, likes to characterize the various areas/ components of Al regarding what he calls the “Onion Model” as illustrated hereafter.
While the technical aspects of AI are almost in place by now, initial applications have demonstrated that Al can provide significant leverage for corporate organizations. Some of the illustrative AI applications are as follows:
1. Manufacturing/production planning and scheduling.
2. Project management.
3. Factory management.
4. Sales, distribution and field services.
5. Diagnosis and troubleshooting.
6. Financial management.
7. Currency/interest rates, SWAPs.
8. Portfolio management.
9. Asset-liability management.
10. Reading/interpreting financials.
12. Geology (drilling/oil exploration sites).
Notwithstanding the advances in Artificial Intelligence , it must be remembered that Al systems are not to replace human decision-making completely. They are meant to replicate/emulate rational decision for certain types of clear and well-defined problems the chess matches between Gary Kasparov (Natural Intelligence) and Deep Junior (Artificial Intelligence) being a classic example of AVES.
Like other computer-based information systems, the overall advantages of Artificial Intelligence systems/applications in business is to help the organizations/managers achieve the goals. Al has, no doubt, started getting acceptance and credibility. The success of AI as a mass-market technology, however, would depend upon some practical factors like:
• Personnel with requisite skills.
• Corporate management attributes.
• The demonstration of a variety of commercial AI success stories to be a role model for others to follow.
Artificial Intelligence examples
Smart Home Devices
Music and Movie Recommendation Services
Online Customer Support
Virtual Personal Assistants