Complex Made Simple

AI Exclusive: Smart, cunning, emotional and scary all wrapped up in one

AI Exclusive: Smart, cunning, emotional and scary all wrapped up in one

AI is already superior to man. In Driverless cars, it is sure to avoid accidents. In medicine, it can diagnose, treat and discover therapies at record speeds. It compiles and analyses data at seemingly breakneck speeds, yet accurately.

 “We live in a hyper-connected world. By 2022, we are going to see more traffic crossing global networks than in the entire history of the Internet combined. This traffic comes from all of us, and increasingly, our machines,” said David Meads, vice president, Middle East and Africa, Cisco.

Intelligent machines will one day be able to learn, create and adapt to any situation. 

We’re not there yet and we’re just taking baby steps with AI, and perhaps that’s wise.

Unless we are careful, the machine will think it can take over. As humans are naturally inefficient, AI will automatically try to make us redundant. 

And in many ways, it is already doing that.

AI: The threats 

A report by Deloitte estimated that in the next twenty years low paid, unskilled and repetitive jobs are five times more likely to be taken over by AI algorithms than high skilled, well paid jobs.

James Petter, EMEA VP, Pure Storage told AMEinfo: “Just about anywhere we currently use humans to complete repetitive tasks, AI can help.” 

Experts predict that robots will do 30% of our jobs by 2025. 

Subrat Panda, Principal Architect and Head of AI at Capillary Technologies told AMEinfo: “AI is currently most useful and productive in the supervised mode where labelled data is abundant.”

“AI does the heavy lifting but the solutioning logic is very domain specific and needs the additional human defined layers. Jobs that require a lot of context, emotional quotient, and societal interactions will require a lot of human intervention and involvement.”

Also many AI experts believe AI intelligence to surpass that of humans, and more interesting is if they develop self-consciousness, and feelings of love and suffering. Most human mistakes are made when actions are emotionally motivated. Will AI make them worse if cyber guilt is not part of the emotional portfolio?  

The late Stephen Hawkings said: “Success in creating Artificial Intelligence would be the biggest event in human history. Unfortunately, it might also be the last, unless we learn how to avoid the risks”.

AI: The opportunities

Petter said AI is something we are already seeing across several industry verticals. With the help of Pure Storage and NVIDIA, Global Response has begun development on a state-of-the-art call centre system that will allow for a superior and customized customer experience and faster solutions. 

In healthcare, Paige.AI is an organization focused on revolutionizing clinical diagnosis and treatment in oncology through the use of AI. It aims to transform the pathology and diagnostics industry from highly qualitative to a more rigorous, quantitative discipline. 

UC Berkeley’s AMPLab created and pioneered real-time analytics engine Apache Spark™, the fastest, most cutting-edge analysis tool in the world. The UC Berkeley genomics department then implemented Apache Spark on top of flash storage to serve as an accelerator to make major leaps in genomic sequencing,” added Petter. 

Similarly, Man AHL, a pioneer in the field of systematic quantitative investing, also leverages Apache Spark on top of flash storage to create and execute computer models that make investment decisions. “Roughly 50 quantitative researchers and more than 60 technologists collaborate to formulate, develop and drive new investment models and strategies that can be executed by computer.” 

AI: The need

Avaya Holdings Corp. today announced that it will be opening a Customer Experience Center (CEC) at One Central, Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), where it will showcase the latest advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), biometrics, and blockchain-enabled communications and collaboration solutions.

According to the recent Avaya SuperServe report, nearly half (48%) of consumers would like organizations to use AI to improve their products and services, and 71% would like to use voice analytics or biometrics as a means of secure authentication. 

Petter quoted a survey conducted by MIT Technology Review and commissioned by Pure Storage that said 85% of respondents in MEA believe that there will always be a need for humans to interpret the data. 

“This creates a whole new demand for what the industry now calls ‘data scientists’. In addition, AI will free up workers to think more creatively about the business challenges they face and reduce rote tasks so workers can turn their focus to innovation and become more creative on strategic projects.

AI: The Benefits

 Umair Mohammed, founder of Wigzo told that considering the plethora of communication channels available to people, AI allows businesses to create an omni-channel experience to engage customers continuously, consistently and instantly.  

“Pepper, the first humanoid robot, is a fine example of customer engagement. It is used by SoftBank Mobile and Nestle stores in Japan, to adapt to customer’s tastes and habits,” he said.

Customers also expect personalized experiences and Google, for example, by watching what you search and what you click on, it learns what you like, love or hate and throws personalized notifications by using relevancy and self-learning algorithm.

As for making predictions, “You may have perhaps heard of ‘Digital Genius’, an automated chat software which combines Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Processing (NLP) to form responses based on historical chat data of the customers”, Mohammed said.

 AI: the infrastructure

Is the region taking advantage of AI capabilities or doing what is needed for public/pvt sectors to make the leap?

“Yes, there is a boost from the government on the AI strategy in all verticals, specifically energy, , transportation, Environment, education, technology etc. In my opinion, there is a long way to go for proper AI adoption but there is simple and productive usage of AI which is plugging holes everywhere,” said Panda. 

Petter said the primary barriers to AI adoption are infrastructure readiness, a big challenge, and sparse talent resources (data scientists).

Till recently enterprises were stuck with building their own solution for AI. With “Do-it-yourself” (DIY) these enterprises lose months of productivity trying to leverage the existing, complex DIY platforms and go through the painful cycle of integrating, testing and continuously maintaining both the hardware and ever-evolving software.

“Enterprises need solutions that are proven, tested and mature so that they can focus on how the technology helps their business problem rather than worrying about building the underlying technology themselves,” Petter said.

Even when all of this is done, users often find that workloads are slow. It’s because the system is built with old, legacy components cobbled together in the system.

“I think it is paramount that organizations invest in all-flash data platforms. Flash storage arrays are best suited for these AI projects as they encompass a parallelism that mimics the human brain and enables multiple queries or jobs to run simultaneously.”