What is Human Centered AI?

Human Centered Artificial Intelligence is a combination of human-centered design, artificial intelligence, and machine learning that transforms how businesses can use, operate, and leverage data they’ve acquired without needing to build new algorithms for new tasks.

It considers the needs, wants, and desires of humans when developing new applications. Understanding the fundamentals of AI is important if you plan to use it for your business digital transformation.

Importance and Benefits of Human Centered AI

Human-Centered AI promises a plethora of benefits. It promises more ethics, accuracy, and data to business owners so they can understand their customers better and meet individual customers’ needs with AI that can cater to them.

Most Artificial Intelligence algorithms used in businesses today don’t collect, organize and analyze data in ways that are useful for their employees. With a human-first approach, as designed in human-centered AI, the algorithm recognizes humans as the only users of the products and services and keeps them as the focal point of the design. The User experience, research, and design principles acquired in Human Centered AI help designers identify ways in which biased data may have influenced other AI agents’ behavior or response. And Human-Centered AI is important because it allows us, humans, to become more involved in how AI is implemented.

Humans are central in AI training data (the process of creating datasets to teach machine learning algorithms) because they have the natural ability to learn, adapt and perform. Because humans can learn and adapt based on their own personal experiences, they are a good source of data that can teach machine learning algorithms.

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The relationship between human-centered AI and human-computer interaction

HCI, or Human-Computer Interaction, is the field of study that focuses on optimizing how users and computers interact. This includes developing strategies to make interactions more human-centered. HCI has been around for a while, dating back to the 1980s when personal computing was on the rise. With the advent of the internet and the explosion of mobile and diversified technologies such as voice-based AI systems and the Internet of Things (IoT), computing became omnipresent and omnipotent. Consequently, the need for developing a tool that would make such man-machine interactions more human-like grew significantly. This established HCI as a technology, bringing different fields such as cognitive engineering, linguistics, neuroscience, and others under its realm. Today, Human factors engineering is the application of human sciences and engineering principles to the design and evaluation of computer systems and products. Human factors engineers work to ensure that products and systems are safe, comfortable, and easy to use.

How To Implement Human-Centered AI

Implementing human-centered AI consists of four main areas of focus to implement the technology in a way that is most beneficial to its users. They are:

  • Understand the User Experience – Conduct research first to understand the user experience and data that is relevant to those interactions. This can be accomplished through administering surveys, focus groups, and conducting customer interviews. Then take this information and use it to design AI applications based on insights acquired.
  • Design AI Applications – Create solutions that help users accomplish their tasks. These solutions can be built into any platform or application, such as apps, websites, ads, or mobile devices.
  • Implement AI Solutions – Deploy these solutions across multiple touchpoints so users can interact with them easily when they need assistance completing tasks or getting more information about products/services they’re interested in purchasing.
  • Test & Measure Results – Test how well these solutions work by building a prototype to monitor how many times users interact with them, what they use them for, and find out if they’re satisfied with their interaction experience.

Use Case Of Human Centered AI

Human-centered AI can apply to a wide variety of AI applications and forms of data. It can be used to optimize a chatbot’s language to make it more accessible to a wider range of users or used to identify data that is relevant to humans.

One example of this is using natural language processing (NLP) to improve a chatbot’s language. A chatbot is a computer program that simulates a human-to-human online conversation. And a chatbot’s language can sometimes be difficult for people to understand, especially those who have language barriers or who use assistive technologies. You can use NLP to improve a chatbot’s language by taking a sample of language that is both easy to understand and relevant to the task the chatbot is designed to complete. Then take the sampled language and train the chatbot to use a similar language. This helps make the chatbot become more accessible. You can also use NLP to let a chatbot understand natural language so the chatbot responds to questions and comments in ways that are both easy to understand and relevant to the conversation.

Human Centered AI Used In Businesses

Human-centered AI benefits businesses the most, when business owners use it to make informed decisions, become reliable, apply principled behavior, scale, and predict future aspects of products and services.

This is seen within some of the following industries:


In Healthcare, Human-Centered AI brings newer and more efficiency to the lives of patients, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. The algorithm evaluates healthcare data in many forms to organize data and identify insights and patterns. It can also identify new drug applications. One example of this was seen with the new drug for the treatment of COVID-19. The data was used to organize photographs, clinical research trials, and medical claims.

Human Resources

Many organizations deal with being called out for biases during their hiring process. Human centered AI can be designed to eliminate biases by using only job-related data in applications to initiate hiring decisions. This way hiring staff prioritizes diversity and extinguishes a more inclusive hiring process within the company.

Auto Industry

Since the introduction of autonomous cars, there has been a lot of improvement in how cars are driven. Artificial intelligence created self-driving cars that use sensors to acquire data about their surrounding environment. There will be a lot more of this in the years to come.


AI plays a critical role in teaching and online class experiences. Way before the onset of the pandemic, remote learning was introduced but it became more popular ever since. Human-Centered AI has helped teachers and lecturers build courses, assess student performances, save time and automate tasks. It can even be tailored to meet the needs of each individual student.


Basic AI technologies can already detect network intrusion, fraud, hacks, user authentication, and spam filtration. Human Centered AI systems allow for the detection of attacks ahead of time way before they even enter the system.

Renewable Energy

Human centered artificial intelligence is needed to utilize renewable energy. It helps manage the decentralized grids, as well as balance, store, and optimize electricity demands and supply in real time. For example, gas turbines have sensors attached that are linked to AI data processing systems that gather information to adjust fuel valves and ensure low emissions levels. Human-Centered AI even has the ability to make better decisions on reducing environmental impact.

Pros of Human Centered AI

Human-centered AI is designed to improve human user experience by taking into account factors such as personality, context, and expectations. Automated AI is designed to solve specific tasks without human intervention or oversight. That is why the goal of human-centered AI is not to replace humans entirely but to enhance our capabilities with intelligent, human-informed technology.

This is demonstrated in a variety of ways, including:

Human Impact

Human Centered AI can make a big impact on us improving our health and well-being by having systems that monitor our physical activity and stress levels, allowing us to better manage our health by making better food and exercise decisions on a daily basis. It also reduces our work stress by relieving us of repetitive or mundane tasks.

Improve Operational Efficiency

Human centered AI can assist in streamlining business operations and increasing efficiency. One example is AI predicting the future and forecasting events based on historical data. Google, for example, uses AI to forecast flu outbreaks and traffic jams by analyzing search queries and traffic patterns in various countries.

This type of advanced human-designed technology enables us to expand processes and information on a larger scale without compromising data integrity or increasing spending on human resources.

Cons of Human Centered AI

Human-centered AI advanced technology is beneficial but it does pose some risks. The most concerning risks are misuse of technology, loss of jobs, and a negative impact on human capabilities.


A recent survey found that half of Americans don’t trust companies with their personal information including credit card numbers and social security numbers. They believe that these companies will use this information for marketing purposes without considering their privacy rights in return for free services or discounts on products or services.

Another form of misuse is from hackers and criminals who want to steal money or break into systems such as those of banks or hospitals. In 2017 an AI virus called WannaCry attacked computers around the world and locked down their data while requesting a ransom of $300 in Bitcoin cryptocurrency.

Job Loss

There are a few experts that claim that AI will take over most of the tasks that humans perform in their day-to-day lives, which will result in a massive unemployment rate. 

Human Impact

Algorithms that are designed without consideration for the human nature of their users, algorithms can lead to poor user behavior. People can find themselves dependent on a machine that fails them when they need it the most if they allow their abilities to deteriorate or don’t actively seek out learning opportunities.

You can see this with online shopping. When someone shop online they spend more money than they need to because the system recommends products that replicate past purchases, instead of showing them deals or coupons they would find if they were shopping in a physical store. This is why people believe that advanced AI technologies have the potential to make people lazy and less productive.

Another addictive issue stems from cell phone usage. Social media platforms are designed and called out to have an addictive nature. This has been linked to people experiencing feelings of unhappiness or “fear of missing out” in compulsive users, which largely affects a person’s work, home life, health, and mental well-being.

To avoid these issues, you should be careful when designing AI functionality based on human needs, wants, and desires.

History of Human Centered AI

Artificial Intelligence can be traced back to the 1950s when computer scientists were inspired by the work of Alan Turing, who proposed a test that would evaluate whether a machine could exhibit some level of intelligence. The Turing Test is still used today to evaluate whether machines can be considered sentient.

One of the earliest applications of AI was when computers were used to help doctors diagnose patients. IBM developed an AI system called Watson that could perform medical diagnoses by analyzing patient information and comparing it to a large database of medical records. Watson was able to outperform experienced doctors by correctly diagnosing approximately 80% of patients with certain illnesses. It was so successful that it eventually became the inspiration for other AI systems in healthcare.

Another application was IBM’s Deep Blue, which beat chess champion, Garry Kasparov, in 1997. Deep Blue was able to navigate through a maze and identify patterns more quickly than humans could by using neural networks and sophisticated algorithms.

However, it wasn’t until the 1980s that AI really took off. This was largely due to the advent of expert systems, which mimicked human behavior by learning from examples and making decisions on the fly without human intervention. And in 1995, digital assistants like Siri arose and their goal was to improve our ability to interact with computers and help us accomplish tasks that automated systems couldn’t handle on their own.

Today, AI is all around us. We have self-driving vehicles, smart home appliances, and chatbots that provide customer service on social media platforms like Facebook Messenger.

Future Outlook On Human Centered AI

Human-Centered AI technology has the ability to learn, adapt and improve itself based on data. Its applications have an impact on society because it’s designed to be aware of its surroundings, and make decisions better than humans. This allows many people communication-wise, including the elderly, to stay in touch with friends, family, and people with disabilities, such as those on the autism spectrum, who are unable to get humans to recognize and respond to their emotions and needs. AI improves communication by simulating human interaction with technology.

While human-centered AI is often seen as the future of AI there are still significant challenges to be overcome before this type of AI can become mainstream. One major challenge for human-centered AI is understanding natural language. Some people are better at understanding language than others, so there’s no way for an AI system to know whether you’re being sarcastic or making a serious point without context.

Another challenge is dealing with situations where humans need to override an automated assistant and take control of it. Cases, where this can happen, are with self-driving cars or auto-performing surgery. As we get closer to human-centered AI becoming a reality, these challenges will likely become fewer and easier to overcome.


Human-centered artificial intelligence is a branch of artificial intelligence that focuses on making machines learn from human behavior, rather than forcing humans to follow the instructions of pre-designed algorithms. Its use of human-centered principles is used to create AI functionality that reflects how humans prefer to interact with technology and this improves the experience overall of humans interacting with AI.

If you want to learn more about HCI, also read this interesting blogpost about Human Intelligence vs AI.