The quest for building intelligent machines has now reached a critical point where such machines or systems are now part of our daily lives. From smart virtual assistants helping us in our day to day activities to AI empowered systems helping businesses run efficiently. Such is the potential of Artificial Intelligence that no economic sector is out of its reach and no organization today can afford to ignore it.
Moreover, the research and development on AI have taken us to many new directions like how machines can develop itself with or without human intervention! aka Machine Learning Or How algorithms mimicking the human brain (artificial neural networks) can be used to train machines so that they take smart decisions just like us! Aka Deep Learning.
If you are enthusiastic about such cool technologies and plan to take Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning courses or if you are already upskilling then you must be fascinated with the various application of AI.
As of now let us look at some important applications of AI.
AI helping us manage food production and supply
Through the use of AI, machines are now being taught to think just like a human expert would about food! From recognising the right texture of a food product to understanding the various shapes and sizes of various foods, machines can do it all thanks to advancements in AI.
You might wonder about the intentions behind teaching machines to understand our food. Well, the main objective behind such an idea is to use machines as smart assistants to us as we try to reduce wastage of raw food, preserving foods the right way and take mundane tasks away from workers so that they can spend more time on innovation.
Let us understand the application with the help of an example. Workers at the fruit orchards need to be extra careful about too many things like the perfect time to pick a particular kind of fruit or the kind of disease one orchard might be suffering without the workers’ knowledge. George Furniss the CEO of BBC technologies in Hamilton, New Zealand observed such problems in his family’s own blueberry firm. He found that the blueberries were so delicate that much of the crop is wasted before it can arrive fresh on a grocery store.
Trying to tackle the problem, help of technology was sought which gave birth to the BBC technologies. After years of development and testing today the firm uses a magnificently capable and efficient machine based on AI to sort blueberries based on colour and texture. The machine is capable of handling 2,400 individual images of fruits per second and calculate the time each individual blueberry might rot. This led to a capable system of decision making as depending on the machine, the management could efficiently decide which batch of blue berries to be shipped overseas and which batch has to be consumed locally!
Understanding the marine ecosystem
We have been intrigued by the marine ecosystem since long. It holds the mystery of so many species and so many wonderful creatures whose existence can be linked with our own. Moreover, the global pollution levels have been rising gradually for some time now and we desperately need to understand the impact of pollution on the marine ecosystem before its too late. And what else can help us understand the vast oceans and the creatures living in them better than AI, given the vast amount of data we have and also the efficiency level that can be reached with the help of AI!
There is very good instance of how AI is already proving to be very instrumental in marine studies- how google helped a research ecologist to track the singing of humpback whales!
In 2018 a research ecologist named Dr Ann Allen was trying to distinguish the singing of humpback whales from loads of other oceanic sounds. She had around 180,000 hours of underwater recordings and the mammoth task looked like impossible. However, she approached google and the tech giant’s engineers took the challenged relying on AI. The engineers trained a neural network to detect the songs based on a system of identifying similar humpback whale songs from YouTube videos and a variety of other sources. Nine months later the impossible was achieved! Similar algorithms are used by global institutions to track population of endangered ocean species real time and understand the marine ecosystem!
The possibilities with AI are limitless with if data is abundant. Now that with the emergence of IoT devices a lot more data can be collected, we are staring at a very bright future of AI!