Artificial Intelligence: What Is It Good For?
Katrina L Schultz
The science of artificial intelligence, often abbreviated to A.I., is an exciting and dynamic field that’s rife with potentially unlimited applications. It is something that is already becoming part of our everyday lives, and will likely only become more and more common as the field continues to advance. What, exactly, is artificial intelligence, though? The Merriam-Webster Dictionary (2013) defines A.I. as: 1: a branch of computer science dealing with the simulation of intelligent behavior in computers 2: the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behavior. In other words, artificial intelligence is “the science and engineering of making intelligent machines, especially intelligent computer programs” (McCartney, Basic Questions). It also involves “various kinds of knowledge representation schemes, different techniques of intelligent search, various methods for resolving uncertainty of data and knowledge and different schemes for automated machine learning” (Rios, para. 13).
Though it may still seem like a futuristic science, artificial intelligence is already being used in multiple aspects of our day to day life. Meteorologists use A.I. to help predict the weather, financial institutions use it to protect consumer finances by monitoring spending patterns and flagging anomalies or even automatically suspending the use of a credit card when fraud is suspected, and doctors use artificial intelligence to aid them in the detection and prevention of diseases. It is also used to handle dull tasks around the home, such as to control robotic vacuum cleaners, lawn mowers and window cleaners (Turner, 2010). Some manufacturers employ artificial intelligence to monitor combustion patterns and modify their manufacturing process to minimize pollution, or to recognize and capture dangerous chemicals before they can be expelled in to the...
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