Abraham Lincoln on Artificial Intelligence: A dependent crutch or an unreined unicorn | Blog Wars

By Rachi Agarwal

Editorial Note This blog has been written by a finalist of the Blog Wars event organised the PeaceX. The writing prompt, "As Abraham Lincoln, write an essay on the topic 'Artificial Intelligence: A dependent crutch or an unreigned unicorn'", was created from a writing prompt generator to allow participants to step into the minds of the most famous and influential of international personalities, and recreate their vision on contemporary issues. We encourage you to read, like and share your favourite posts, which can be found here! Happy reading, Blog Wars Organising Team

In this era of science and technology, artificial intelligence or machine intelligence has started influencing almost every aspect of our lives in order to improve and enhance the efficiency of our human capabilities.


Artificial intelligence is basically the simulation of human intelligence processes using machines, especially computer systems that focus mainly on three cognitive skills: learning, reasoning and self-correction.


AI makes every process better, faster, and more accurate. Building an AI system, is a careful process of reverse-engineering human traits and capabilities in a machine, and using its computational prowess to surpass what we are capable of.


Artificial Intelligence improves the existing process and applications across industries and also helps in developing new solutions to problems that are overwhelming to deal with manually.


Types of Artificial Intelligence:


· Artificial Narrow Intelligence (ANI): These are the systems designed for performing one specific task and whose capabilities are not easily transferrable to other systems.


· Artificial General Intelligence (AGI): These are machines with human-level or higher intelligence capable of abstracting concepts from limited experience and transferring knowledge between domains.


· Artificial Super Intelligence (ASI): This is where machines become self-aware and surpass the capacity of human intelligence and ability.


AI is Indispensable:


Artificial Intelligence is transforming the nature of almost everything which is connected to human life, like employment, economy, communication, warfare, privacy, security, ethics, healthcare, etc.


It has made our lives easier by:-


· Reducing Errors

With AI being introduced in sectors like healthcare and banking, we can be assured of the accuracy of the results.

AI eradicates all the chances of making mistakes and leaves no room for errors. The activities carried out by the tools of AI are done with great precision.


· Easing Out Difficult Tasks

AI can be deployed to tackle dangerous jobs like welding which can have harmful consequences on humans.

The toxic substances and the intense heat cannot affect machines, thus saving human lives. Dangerous jobs like fuel exploration or ocean life exploration can also be undertaken by AI-driven machines, thus erasing the barrier of human limitation.


· Providing Safety and Security

With the computed methods of AI, all our daily activities have been made safe and secure. It is for this purpose that financial institutions and banking institutions are incorporating AI to organize and manage data.


· Increasing Work Efficiency

Since machines need no breaks and are programmed to work for long hours, productivity undoubtedly increases. Unlike humans, who need to take a break to feel more rejuvenated, machines can work more at a stretch.


Other advantages of AI include, 24×7 availability, help in doing repetitive work, digital assistance, faster decisions and efficient communication.


Applications Of AI:


The applications of artificial intelligence are endless. The technology can be applied to many different sectors and industries. Few sectors where AI is being used is:-


· Healthcare:

Companies are working towards improving patient health and reducing costs. They are applying machine learning to make better and faster diagnosis than humans. One of the best-known healthcare technologies is IBM Watson. It understands natural language and responds to questions asked. Also, there are online virtual health assistants and chatbots to help patients and healthcare customers find medical information, schedule appointments, understand the billing process and complete other administrative processes.



· Business:

Machine learning algorithms are being entwined into analytics and customer relationship management platforms to get information on how to serve customers in a better way. Chatbots have been installed into websites to provide immediate and 24x7 service to customers.


· Education:

AI can automate grading, giving teachers or mentors more time. It can assess students and adapt to their needs, helping them work at their own pace. AI tutors can provide additional support to students, ensuring they stay on track.


· Finance:

Various personal finance applications like Intuit Mint or TurboTax, are disrupting financial institutions. Such applications collect personal data and provide financial advice. Other programs, such as IBM Watson, have been applied to the process of buying a home.


· Law:

The discovery process which includes sifting through documents -- in law is often overwhelming for us. But by using AI to help automate the legal industry's labour-intensive processes is saving time and improving client service. Law firms are using machine learning to describe data and predict outcomes.


· Manufacturing:

Manufacturing has been at the leading edge of incorporating robots into the workflow. For eg, the industrial robots that were at one time programmed to perform single tasks and separated from human workers, increasingly function as co-bots: Smaller, multitasking robots which collaborate with humans and take the responsibility for more parts of the job in warehouses, factory floors and other workspaces.


· Banking:

Banks are installing chatbots to make their customers aware of services provided and to handle transactions that don't require human intervention. AI virtual assistants are also being used to improve and reduce the costs of compliance with banking regulations. Banking organizations are also using AI to improve their decision-making for loans, and to set credit limits and identify investment opportunities.


· Transportation:

AI technologies are being used in transportation sector to manage traffic, predict flight delays, and make ocean shipping safer and much more efficient.


Super intelligent AI:


The concept of the technological singularity which means a future ruled by an artificial superintelligence that will surpass the human intelligence and ability to understand it or how it is shaping our reality -- currently remains within the realms of science fiction as we are very far away from reaching that goal.


Today’s technology has only taken us up to Narrow AI or Weak AI extent which is an AI system that is designed and trained to complete a specific task. Industrial robots and virtual personal assistants, such as Apple's Siri, use such AI system.


But what we want is a system that can replicate the cognitive abilities of the human brain. When given with an unfamiliar task, such AI system should be able to use a crazily innovative logic to apply knowledge from one domain to another and find a solution autonomously. Theoretically, a strong AI program should be able to pass both, Turing test and the Chinese room test.


Conclusion:


The AI machines are just machines that can think intelligently and creatively and can translate the thoughts in wide range of human applications.


I would say that AI is definitely an unreined unicorn as its immense potential has no boundaries to which it can change our way of living and will definitely keep on improving over the years. But it is the human mind that infuses creativity in the machines and makes them act in a particular way. With AI we can excel both in intelligence and creativity and can get the best outcomes.


Thus, conquering incompetency with upskilling and reskilling is indeed our way ahead! For AI doesn’t overpower us, but rather we power the intelligence behind the AI.


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