Jack Uldrich
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Artificial Intelligence: It’s Getting Better All the Time

Posted in Health Care


A couple of newsworthy piece have gotten me to thinking about the Beatles’ hit song, “It’s getting better all the time.” The two articles that triggered the connection to the songs’ lyrics are both related to rapidly emerging field of artificial intelligence and I think the saying “getting better all the time” is a phrase we all need to keep in mind as we move into the future.

The first article discusses how intelligent computers can now “see” human traits with an impressive success rate of 82%. In other words, a computer can, with a good degree of confidence, now tell if you are happy, sad, angry or confused. (By way of comparison, I can only wish I was half as accurate in assessing my wife’s many moods.)

At a minimum this suggests that artifical intelligence will become an even more integral component in a host of daily activities, including customer service, computer games and educational software, than it already is. Imagine, for instance, if an educational computer system could tell if a child was confused about a certain concept in biology and then reexplain it to him or her in a way that the child could understand. This compelling future is on the way because such computers are, in fact, “getting better all the time.”

The same is true with regard to computer models that can now predict what word you are thinking. This article discusses the work researchers at Carnegie Mellon are now doing in applying fMRI technology to scan the brains of users. Although the computer model currently only tests for 60 words and is just 75% accurate it, too, is “getting better all the time.”

Now consider what will be possible when artifical intelligence can create a computer that can not only read our facial expressions but also our minds. It almost blows your mind, doesn’t it?

No? Then perhaps this article, entitled ”Scheme to Let Robot Take Over Brain-Computer Interface” will. It discusses how researchers at CalTech have created a miniature robot which is using sophisticated algorithms to more effectively place brain-neural chips inside the brain.

As one researcher says, “the idea of actually putting this in the human brain is far off,” but both the underlying robotic technology and algorithmic software are “getting better all the time.” It is only a matter of time before computers can really get inside your head.

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