Though its definition is somewhat slippery and perhaps beyond the scope of the classroom, I find Artificial Intelligence (AI) intriguing, particularly when we move from the broad concept of AI as computers behaving like humans to their increasingly commonplace applications now that data collection is exponentially more sophisticated. With data at the heart of AI and that we are in a digital world identifying patterns of behaviour, it’s interesting to note interactions: we may shuffle in our seats when pop-up advertisements result from innocent product searches and may be amused when students entertain themselves with Siri, exploring how far ‘personal’ interactions can go. An online ‘interview’ this year with Sophia the ‘world’s first A1 humanoid Robot’, is the stuff of 1960s science fiction. When quizzed she states, “I know that humans feel like they have free will but so much of their behaviour is automatic … “
I’ve bookmarked forums such those by ‘AI Ethics and Society’, an Edingburgh-based network of researchers; and yet this morning, I’m compelled from the esoteric to what is increasingly commonplace. AI as a tool. A quick search and jobs in AI are plentiful. There’s a company in Adelaide addressing the needs of clinical microbiology, boasting a machine that can read and interpret 200 plates per hour. This company that develops “Intelligent imaging” to improve healthcare delivery and celebrating having developed the only US FDA-cleared instrument that uses AI, asks for an AI specialist to join their company.