What is Artificial Intelligence?
Is AI Intelligent?
We have been immersed in the complexities of AI for the past 5 years. Our projects cover large scale distributed assets across telecommunications, energy and power companies. As AI matures, and its application simplifies, the potential business benefits extend to all sectors.
We are often asked, what exactly is AI? Is it truly intelligent?
Intelligence has been defined in several ways depending on context. From a layman’s perspective, intelligence can be described as the capacity to understand and perceive new information. To retain it as knowledge to be applied in the future.
In any context, human beings learn by experience. More complex understanding takes time and effort.
The growing reach of AI
Similar to “human intelligence”, AI cannot be defined as a unique and fixed concept but as a set of different technologies working together. Enabling machines to learn and understand. It aims to mimic the human brain’s thinking and decision-making processes.
AI allows machines to digest a large amount of information rapidly, which enables them to:
- Automate frequent and high-volume tasks efficiently and reliably without fatigue.
- Process and analyse vast volumes of data, compared to humans.
- Once “AI has learned” an activity, it does that with incredible accuracy. It never fails due to fatigue or distraction.
- AI never stops learning and adapts itself during progressive learning.
The same set of AI technologies can be swiftly adapted to several fields. For example, Inspection²’s technology could be used for quality checks within production processes, safety checks on construction sites or medical images to pinpoint anomalies with high accuracy.
What about other distinguishing features of human intelligence?
Emotional Intelligence and creativity are also recognised as distinguishing features of human versus machine intelligence. Whilst AI has been used to effectively replicate great works of art, this is distinct from its creation.
Emotional Intelligence is defined as the capability to understand the meaning of emotions. To use this understanding to reason and problem solve. It is about understanding and managing emotions not only in others but in oneself. AI has been used to read emotions in video-based market research activities. However, this is a long way from the wider capabilities of Emotional Intelligence.
Emotional Intelligence is interconnected with Cultural Intelligence. Cultural Intelligence is defined as the ability to read, understand, and adapt to new cultural settings. Again, this is currently beyond the grasp of AI.
The distinguishing feature of intelligence in the context of AI is the processing and analytical power of vast swaths of data, with exceptional accuracy, at speed. Intelligence has a multitude of definitions when considering humans. One element is this processing power. Therefore, it is reasonable to contend that Artificial Intelligence, is intelligent. However, perhaps not through a universally agreed definition.
We understand the complexities of AI and the power of its intelligence. We also recognise the importance of accessibility to the non-technical user. We are equally passionate about the simplicity of our user interface, as we are the sophistication of our algorithms. Both are critical to optimising the ever-expanding reach and impact of this hyper enabling technology.
What do you think will come next?
Head of AI