Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) 5 of 14

Part One

A.I. – Artificial Intelligence
A.I. or Artificial Intelligence is the stuff of nightmares.  It’s what keeps Elon Muck awake at night.  It is the technology that has fueled Hollywood SciFi for decades.  I am going to show you what is, how we use it, and why it is nothing to be afraid of.

A.I. is a program or a set of instructions given to a computer that when run, mimics how a human would respond.  That’s all.

The most common instruction A.I. has is what is called an “If Then” statement.  Here’s how it works.

If you bought this product, then look up in the data base for products that have similar keywords in their descriptions, and show them.  Or…

If you watched this movie, look up keywords in a data base of other movies and show “Because you watched “X”, you may like to watch “Y”.

We see this all the time on Amazon and Netflix.  It’s everywhere.

Now, the scary part is on the most sophisticated side of the A.I. spectrum.  It’s something called “Machine Learning”.  This is where computers are set free on the Internet to gather millions of pieces of information and are allowed to write its own set of instructions.  Machine Learning is where the computer teaches itself.

A good example is where on May 11, 1997, Deep Blue (IBM), beat Garry Kasparov the then world chess champion at a game of chess.  Deep Blue learned to play chess by playing against itself in more than 23 million games, then synthesized its own strategies.

Another example is where on March 9, 2016, Google DeepMind’s AlphaGo program defeated Lee Sedol in the ancient Chinese game of Go.

I hope you are enjoying these blogs, because there are more to come!

Lon Safko, Serial Innovator
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