We come into contact with artificial intelligence everywhere. In many cases we are not aware of the fact that certain services are products of self-learning software. Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most important driving forces for technical, scientific and economical development in the 21st century. The economy in particular is focusing on AI. How can companies utilize artificial intelligence today and in the future?
Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant – today many people rely on digital assistants. And artificial intelligence is behind each of these little helpers. These self-learning systems gradually understand their individual users better and better. This not only applies to speech recognition, it also applies to semantics. Answers to questions, for instance about a restaurant, are based on the personal preferences of the asker. One will be given the name of an Italian restaurant, another person a Chinese or Greek restaurant – depending on their preferences, which the digital assistant learns in the course of time.
Chatbots are a specific form of digital assistants that are used on the Internet. “Hello, my name is Lisa! How can I help you?” – this or similar pop-ups appear on a growing number of websites. They have achieved an increased amount of acceptance a practical helpers in customer support. The best chatbots work with high quality AI systems, which they constantly self-optimize on a trial and error basis. The deployment of chatbots is a service with a future. An increasing number of companies have recognized the benefits of outsourcing services in virtual support.
Chatbots are not the only low-cost and effective marketing tools. Modern online advertising is based on the analysis of personal surfing behavior: Artificial intelligence makes the potential customer an offer at the best time and presents it in the respectively relevant surroundings. Obstacles for professional marketing with the help of AI are meanwhile less the technical options than increasingly tight data protection regulations. Solutions are needed that will give equal consideration to the interests of service providers and consumers.
Whether switching on the lights via voice control or a refrigerator that automatically creates its own shopping lists – the presence of artificial intelligence in smart home technology has led to amazing developments. The systems respond more effectively to the needs of human beings. The keyword here is Context Awareness: In addition to analyzing the input, intelligent software also takes the circumstances in which the user is asking, into account. This continuously improves the quality of the answers and responses.
What do smartphones and artificial intelligence have to do with the energy transition? Plenty! Due to the fact that new systems process inconceivable amounts of data, they can rapidly recognize specific behavior patterns. The heating supply can for instance be optimized to save energy. This also improves living comfort. But AI is not only useful for small energy transition projects, it can also be applied to large ones: Electricity providers for instance rely on intelligent systems to control their power grids and to optimize the fluctuating supply of solar and wind energy.
It is a matter of course that today’s computer programs understand the meaning of text and voice commands. But the development continues. Many devices can already be unlocked with face recognition, and detecting people on films or photos is of particular interest to the safety industry: Who is the homeowner and who is the burglar? Capturing emotions has also become so well-engineered that special programs always find the right reaction to the respective mood of the user. The enormous headway in this sector is primarily based on artificial intelligence.
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Medicine and research
Machine systems are more efficient than some experts when it comes to analyzing abstract patterns in x-ray or CAT scans. The growing amount of data makes a deeper and more detailed analysis possible. The vision of the future: Adaptive software will greatly improve medicine due to the availability of a huge amount of global health data. Health-related bio data can already be continuously read to indicate, as needed, a specific medication or other measures.
Self-learning systems are also gaining ground in factories. Robots attached to neuronal networks are continuously fine-tuning the quality of the individual work steps – including the planning of new production processes. The production gradually picks up speed, becomes less expensive and more high-grade. However, the principle of learning through error also underlines managerial problems: How much human control is still necessary? How much waste produced as a result of wrong decisions can a company afford? What is the point at which the benefits compensate for the disadvantages? Until these issues are solved, AI systems ought to be trained parallel to the actual production process.
AI is the key to adapting logistics to fast economic changes. By analyzing Big Data patterns, artificial intelligence can make reliable predictions regarding future orders and based on this information, within seconds, it can find the most efficient transport routes. Optimal route planning and the most efficient utilization of available vehicles makes autonomous driving a key aspect in the deployment of artificial intelligence. Self-driving transport vehicles can be used 24 hours a day. Because the computer is the driver it is not subject to legal working hours – and it never gets tired.
Automobile industry – autonomous driving
Autonomous driving is also a market of the future in the private sector. The quality of the AI systems deployed is crucial to the quality of self-driving cars. The more varied the training data, the more reliably artificial intelligence functions in actual traffic. Was appears on the monitor of the car camera? Dog, cat or human being? The more detailed the database, the more safely cars of the future will navigate the roads.
Application areas for artificial intelligence are numerous and today they include all sectors. AI is therefore not only used for the development of autonomous vehicles in the car industry, it is also deployed in production, logistics and marketing. Although certain details regarding the development of AI in the economy are uncertain, one thing is quite certain: Ignoring artificial intelligence as a growth tool will be detrimental in the long term.
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