Even technology leaders such as Apple have been caught off guard by the rapid evolution of machine learning, the technology that powers AI. At its recent Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple opened up its AI systems so that independent developers could help it create technologies that rival what Google and Amazon have already built.
Today’s AI uses machine learning in which you give it examples of previous games and let it learn from those examples. The computer is taught what to learn and how to learn and makes its own decisions. What’s more, the new AIs are modeling the human mind itself using techniques similar to our learning processes.
The new programming techniques use neural networks – which are modeled on the human brain, in which information is processed in layers and the connections between these layers are strengthened based on what is learned.
Google is replacing this technique in searches and most of its other products with algorithms based on deep learning, the same technologies that it used to defeat a human player at the game Go. During that extremely complex game, observers were themselves confused as to why their computer had made the moves it had. AI has applications in every area in which data are processed and decisions required.
There are justified fears that rather than being told what to learn and complementing our capabilities, AIs will start learning everything there is to learn and know far more than we do.