Artificial Intelligence (AI) is going to change everything we do. Despite true AI still being a long way off (by that I mean a self-aware AI) we are getting used to the fact that we will soon be relying on computers and software to make a number of decisions for us, such as what to eat, how to drive, how much we pay etc. But are we ready for that?
I’ve worked in Data & Analytics for over 10 years now, through age of relation, into Big data and out the other side to what is now known as AI. What I find fascinating about this is despite all of our best efforts, most organisations are still struggling with getting basic insight from data. Most organisations struggle with the issue of data quality, let alone data analysis – and we are thinking of feeding an AI decision engine with this data? No thanks.
And this raises the same issue that we have always had with data; as soon as you lose trust in the facts, or the delivery, or the results, then we will go back to how things were. That’s human nature. It’s in our very bones to re-adjust back to the tried and tested, even if it was wrong. This happens day in, day out – and there is no easy fix.
In fact, in many ways, the only way we would accept something like autonomous driving would be to start with a completely blank slate. We are the biggest variable that an autonomous car has to deal with, either in the driving seat of our own cars or just walking down the street. AI isn’t ready to help humanity yet – or we would all be doing something better with our lives!
But it’s not all doom and gloom.
I am a huge fan of where we are going with all this. We can make real differences to our lives where we rely on systems to help us. Fraud Detection, Anti-Money Laundering, Weather analysis, Facial Security, Video Analysis are all areas where we can speed up our ability to make crucial decisions. However, I still feel that even if we get this right, we are a long way off from actually allowing the AI to do this on its own; because no AI (no matter how powerful) will be 100% accurate, 100% of the time. Just like us.
So are we ready for AI? Probably not.
Is it ready for us? Definitely not.
But we have to give it time and space, allow it to learn and for us to learn with it. That is the only way that we will be able to move down what will be an incredible and exciting journey.