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IBM Schools White House On AI

IBM explains artificial intelligence to the White House.

The White House put out a call for info on the practical applications of artificial intelligence, and IBM has more than answered the call.

The White released a formal request for information on the practical applications and potential risks of AI in June.

“The views of the American people, including stakeholders such as consumers, academic and industry researchers, private companies, and charitable foundations, are important to inform an understanding of current and future needs for AI in diverse fields,” according to the White House’s request.

And IBM certainly stepped up to the plate to deliver a response, which TechCrunch called a “101” class on artificial intelligence.

“Each topic is given a solid enough explanation that after reading through the whole thing, you’ll more than likely be the best-informed person in the room on it,” according to TechCrunch.

IBM’s voluminous and adroit explanation of artificial intelligence should really be read in its (lengthy) entirety to be fully appreciated – which you can do here – but here are some highlights of the report nonetheless:

“For decades, we have been stockpiling digital information. We have digitized the history of the world’s literature and all of its medical journals. We track and store the movements of automobiles, trains, planes and mobile phones. And we are privy to the real-time sentiments of billions of people through social media. It is not unreasonable to expect that within this rapidly growing body of digital information lies the secrets to defeating cancer, reversing climate change, or managing the complexity of the global economy.”

And:

“AI systems are already changing the way work gets done. But history suggests that new technologies like AI result in higher productivity, higher earnings, and overall job growth. In particular, we believe that new companies, new jobs, and entirely new markets will be built on the shoulders of this technology. And we believe that AI systems will improve access to critical services for underserved populations. Overall, we anticipate widespread improvements in quality of life.”

And:

“To reap the societal benefits of artificial intelligence, we will first need to trust it. That trust will be earned through experience, of course, in the same way we learn to trust that an ATM will register a deposit, or that an automobile will stop when the brake is applied. Put simply, we trust things that behave as we expect them to.”

Really, for anyone with even the slightest interest in artificial intelligence, IBM’s response to the White House is well worth the read.

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