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    Future trends and predictions for Artificial Intelligence (AI)

    The impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI) within the technology industry over the past few years has been astronomical, especially within the machine and deep learning sectors, and it doesn’t look like it’s about to slow down any time soon.

    2018 saw the breakthrough of a variety of AI developments including AI medical diagnosis, virtual assistants and connected supply chains within the retail sector, but what can we expect to see throughout 2019/2020? Let’s look at future predictions, and how a range of business sectors are now welcoming the technology advancements.

    1. A move towards ‘Transparent AI’.

    The adoption of AI across the wider community – especially when it involves human data is hindered by the fact that people are not aware of how AI interprets data. To achieve its full potential, AI needs to be trusted, and for this trust to be built we need to understand what it’s doing with our data, and how it makes decisions on our behalf that affect our lives.
    This is often difficult to convey – seeing as what makes AI particularly useful, is its ability to draw connections and make interferences which may not be obvious or even seem counter-intuitive to the human mind. Therefore, building trust in AI systems isn’t just about reassuring the public as businesses will also benefit from openness which exposes bias in data or algorithms, and in 2019 we’re likely to see an increased emphasis on measures designed to increase the transparency of AI.

    2. AI will impact employers before it impacts employment.


    Many people have shared their predictions regarding the way AI will disrupt the jobs market, however individuals should know that the challenge will have to be faced by employers before workers take a hit. This will be especially apparent in the very near – term.
    AI and related technologies such as robotics, drones and driverless vehicles in the long-term could replace human workers in some areas, but also create many additional jobs as productivity and incomes rise and new and better products are constantly being developed in the market.
    However, PwC estimated that healthcare and social work would be the biggest winners from AI due to the growth of machines replacing humans within this field. Employment however could increase by nearly 1 million on a net basis, equivalent to more than a fifth of existing jobs in the sector.

    3. Functional specialists, not techies, will decide the AI talent race.


    A fantastic example of how AI is causing a stir with traditional roles and responsibilities will come in the way it uncouples itself from the world of the computer scientist. There’s no denying the creation of AI engines and algorithms will always play an important role, however for it to truly deliver business value in the long-term it will need to be directed/managed by domain experts who know what ‘success’ looks like.

    4. Cyberattacks will be more powerful because of AI – but so will cyberdefense 


    The defence race in cybersecurity is nothing new to us all, however with the advanced developments of AI, it’s about to enter a more intense phase than ever before. Hackers and attackers will have even more sophisticated tools at their disposal and AI is only going to add to their armoury.

    Whether it’s an attack based on ransomware that learns as it spreads, intelligent malware, machine intelligence coordinating global cyberattacks, or advanced data analytics that can customise attacks, it’s all on its way unfortunately.

    5. Nations will battle to be on top when it comes to AI.


    AI is the new toy on the shelf, which every kid wants to get their hands on. It’s the new frontier or far – reaching tech innovation that the industry has seen in decades, so much so that it could be likened to the space race that started in the late 1950’s during which the USA and Soviet Union fought for superiority.

    The expectation is that if AI continues to deliver on a large scale, many governments will want to make sure that their countries get a big piece of the pie.
    As it stands, Canada, England, Germany and the UAE all have national AI plans in place. There are hopes that in the USA a series of tax-reform and deregulation initiatives will give the US AI sector a boost. However, China currently stands head and shoulders above the rest for prioritising the role of AI in its economic future.

    To summarise, the developments in AI do not look like they are going to relax anytime soon. The changes we are seeing will affect us all on both a personal and professional level. Companies and individuals will need to get on board with the changes to ensure they are not left behind in the technical world, as if they come around to the idea by the end of 2019, we will all get used to a far more natural and flowing discourse with the machines we share our lives with.