What was once thought to be simply a flight of fancy meant to stay in the unreachable realm of science fiction movies, novels, and TV shows, is now, without making that big of a deal really, part of our everyday lives: artificial intelligence. Siri? Alexa? Google Assistant? Face++? All are manifestations of artificial intelligence systems that don’t just exist in our day and age, but are actually actively helping us already.
But artificial intelligence systems aren’t even at their peak yet. In fact, many predictions have been made as to what’s in store for AI within the next five to ten years, and how AI systems will further advance our society and culture to the future depicted in science-fiction.
Some of these predictions include the following:
- AI further advancing into the realms of non-human pattern recognition – This is something that seems like an inevitability. One example is a machine learning program called AlphaGo Zero. This AI beat the world champion of Go, a highly complex game, not by studying how humans play, but by playing against itself. It built knowledge and strategies from nothing, which is a demonstration of the amazing capability of manifesting the equivalent of thousands of years of knowledge and development in mere hours.
- Virtually eliminating medical malpractice with the help of diagnoses and treatments made by machine learning systems – The medical world has countless health records of patients, all containing valuable information and diagnoses made over decades. Imagine an AI that can take all that information, process it, and create diagnoses and treatment plans that are highly accurate and effective. Well, it was already done by a team of American and Chinese researchers, using 1.3 million health records from outpatient visits and over half a million patients. An AI system, using this vast bank of information, was able to accurately make diagnoses, potentially eliminating medical malpractice once deployed on a large scale.
- Further increase the gap between cybersecurity threats and the security and defenses that exist to fight it – Just as how AI systems can be used for good, malicious parties ranging from small hacking groups to government-backed terrorists can also use AI to be destructive and harmful. And in today’s interconnected world, this is a scary proposition. Some examples of this have already been done, and perhaps one of the most infamous examples is the deep fake videos of President Barack Obama. This artificially created version of the former president was even made to speak totally made-up sentences, which can then be used to propagate fake news even more. There is a silver-lining however, as AI systems can also be programmed to combat these malicious attempts.
- Research and manufacturing capabilities will be accelerated tremendously thanks to AI systems – This is perhaps one of the most exciting aspects of AI that can take shape within the next few years. Just like how the light bulb made candles nearly obsolete, and how the computers transformed our information processing in the latter half of the 21st century, AI can speed up our research and manufacturing capabilities on a grand scale. Whereas it can normally take anywhere between a decade or two to invent something like a new material for solar panels or batteries, with the help of AI this time could be cut to half, perhaps even more. In fact, there are companies today already employing AI systems to hasten their research and development processes.
Artificial Intelligence systems are pretty much inevitable moving forward, and the fact that everyone from small to medium businesses to military organizations of some of the most powerful governments in the world are employing it already means that there is no escaping AI’s integration into our lives as we blaze forward to the future.