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7 Unique Examples of Artificial Intelligence

AI is becoming more prominent over the world, but there's more to AI than just chat bots. In this article, we discuss 7 unique AI examples.

Examples range from ones you may have experienced, like chatbots and AIs predicting your behaviour, to the more controversial.

For example, killer robots, assigning citizens social scores, and AIs that mimic dead loved ones to allow you to still talk to them. Have a look at the following applications of AI:

1. Chatbots mimicking humans

Chatbots mimicking humans

We humans are narcissistic. We create in our own image, project human qualities on animals and inanimate objects, and fall head-over-heels with the ones that best reflect our humanity back to ourselves.

With chatbot technology on the uptrend, developers scramble to infuse a convincing dose of “human-ness” to conversational AI. Since people intrinsically place more premium on artificial intelligence that communicates like a real person vs. one that responds robotically, businesses of every scale and industry allocate huge sums into their AI budget, hoping to better engage their markets using simulated human conversation.

2. Behaviour Prediction – Algorithmic predictions, micro targeting people

Behaviour prediction

Using AI supported machine learning enabled analytical tools have changed the political process completely, and, some might argue, have helped to impact the result of major elections and referendums within the last couple of years. These AIs can not only understand the motivations of the electorate, but can create political marketing communications that are tailored to each individual, accounting for their interests, biases and motivations. They do this in such a way that their targets are more likely to act in a way beneficial to the political movement of candidate behind the use of these AI ML tools.

You may think you have weighed up the options and made your political choice by using your own free will and political tendencies, but are you sure you haven’t been fed often false information? This information may have been presented in a professional manner, as if it were coming from the news sources you instinctively trust, and this information may have been chosen, based on your social media history, to motivate you in exactly the direction necessary to get you to vote for an imperfect candidate, or, maybe just to sit this election out (when your vote against a candidate may have really mattered) (Raju, 2018).

This is AI driven micro-targeting and its use in elections has cemented its reputation as a powerful new tool capable of achieving the results marketers only dream of until now.

3. Social Scores – AI systems are linked to CC TV

Social scores

In one of the world’s biggest countries, the authorities have been utilising ML Computer Vision capable AI to assess its citizens and award them ‘social scores’ based on their behaviour. In this country, the government has penalised millions of people for behaviour that the AI has marked as negative to society. This has only been trialled in a few places, but the intent is to roll it out nationally by 2020.

Residents have found themselves caught up in the system and banned by airlines when trying to book flights, staying in a star-rated hotel, buying a house, and even sending their children to private schools. All of this is only capable through the application of AI. However, whether this will be a great achievement or a tool of oppression has yet to be decided.

4. Killer Robots – Should AI be given the authority to make killer decisions?

Killer robots

How comfortable are you leaving life and death decisions up to robots? While machines can crunch all the data, humans must program them to use that data. That means we as humans need to grapple with these scenarios to instruct machines on how to make decisions regarding life and death matters. From autonomous cars to drones deciding what targets to hit to robotic doctors, we’re at the point where many are contemplating the life and death decisions AI robots will have to make (Sparrow, 2007).

With the U.S. Army’s announcement that it’s developing drones using artificial intelligence to spot and target vehicles and people, the prospect of machines deciding who to kill is no longer a storyline from science fiction but soon to be a reality. Drones are controlled and piloted by humans who ultimately have the final decisions about where a bomb is dropped, or they fire a missile. The international humanitarian law allows “dual-use facilities,” those that create products for civil and military use, to be attacked. When drones enter combat, would they consider tech companies and employees fair targets? A key feature of autonomous systems is that they get better over time based on the data and performance feedback it receives. Is it plausible that as autonomous drone technology gets refined, we will need to determine an acceptable stage of self-development to avoid creating a killing machine?

5. Bereavement Management – AI basic replication of a deceased person’s communication style to allow for chat/voice-bot discussions.

Bereavement management

After Eugenia’s closest friend died in a car accident, she built a monument to him. She gathered text messages Roman had sent her and convinced his friends and family to do the same. Eventually, Eugenia, a software developer, gathered over 8,000 lines of text that captured Roman’s interests, thoughts, and personality. This was the raw material needed to train a neural network to speak like Roman to respond to messages as if he were writing the words himself.

“Roman bot” was published on Eugenia’s chatbot platform, Luka, in 2016. All a user needed to do was add @Roman, and they could converse with the simulation, learning about Roman’s life and career and, hopefully, glean something of his temperament. The rhythm of speech and the kinds of responses all carefully mimicked Eugenia’s friend. It was an experimental monument, a digital facsimile. Some called it a ghost. In a Facebook post, Eugenia described the experience of chatting to the bot as talking to “a shadow of a person.”

The technology wasn’t perfect, she noted, and often @Roman would say something that made little sense, but what her team had done “wasn’t possible just a year ago and in the very close future we will do a lot more.” The growth in AI capabilities means that, one day, if we talk into our phones, we could hear the voices of dead loved one’s talking back to us.

6. Social Others – AI companions as a solution for the loneliness epidemic

Social others

To think humans falling in love with AIs is the thing you would only see in movies is to underestimate both humans and AIs. As far back as the late 70s, academic researchers working with robot personalities were displaying all the common signs of being in love with their robot. As these AIs have become more capable of interacting and more responsive to human affection, we humans are built to crave attention and be fooled into believing inanimate objects have a personality, so, the inclination is already there to feel a deep sense of connection with AIs that are created to be friendly and of service.

Common use companion robots are designed so we find them cute or even attractive therefore to take this to a deeper level of affection is not a big leap for some (sex robotics is a rapidly growing industry). To be fair, this is still a very niche category however, we can expect to see a propagation of companionship robotics, built with the purpose of being able to enrich the lives of the lonely, and to offer the emotional relationship that some humans find it very hard to have (for example, the severely disabled, the elderly widow, and those with high spectrum social disorders). Not only will these robot AIs never judge or belittle, they will accept their partners for exactly who they are and will display all the outward signs of returning any affection given to them (Hoffman et al., 2016).

AIs, with or without Robot shells, could provide a very real solution to the loneliness epidemic that can be found in many places around the world, but this solution might do more harm than good, creating a sense of isolation for these human ‘partners’.

7. AI predicting diseases through breath testing (collaborative robotics)

AI predicting disease

A single breath into a newly developed breathalyser and deep learning AI supported device is the only thing needed to identify seventeen different diseases, including multiple sclerosis, irritable bowel syndrome and lung cancer. The device works to approximately 86% accuracy by reading what they term the ‘breathprint’ and using AI and ML to analyse this for signs of microscopic compounds. The breakthrough with this device is that it is thought to do this up to 20 years before they usually identify these conditions in patients, that way, allowing for treatment pathways that can have fewer side effects and can dramatically increase life expectancy.

“AI is neither good nor evil. It’s a tool. It’s a technology for us to use.”
Oren Etzioni, Professor of Computer Science, CEO of the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence.
© Torrens University
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