5 ways AI is changing the World

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Written by: Kerry Purcell, Managing Director Australia and New Zealand.

For some, the words “Artificial Intelligence” are associated with a futuristic Hollywood blockbuster. However, artificial intelligence is not merely a mythical concept in a science fiction movie, it is now very real. Instead of fearing a future living alongside “smart” machines, have you ever thought how Artificial Intelligence can support human intelligence with a partnership between man and machine?To help you understand the benefits of machine learning and cognitive systems, we’re taking a look at five ways that AI is changing the world:#1 – Helping break the language BarrierHave you ever found yourself lost in translation? Whilst a novelty at first, it very quickly becomes frustrating. However, through AI this barrier is becoming increasingly easier to overcome.

Australian start up Lingmo International recently teamed up with IBM to develop the Translate One2One earpiece, a game-changer for global translation. Combining IBM Watson’s natural language processing capabilities with Lingmo’s proprietary hardware and machine learning applications, the earpiece can translate conversations across eight of the world’s most widely-spoken languages in seconds. AI is breaking down language barriers and opening new pathways for human interaction – could you find yourself in translation?

#2 – Icon Group steps up the fight on cancer

In Australia, there will be an estimated 134,174 new cancer cases in 2017. For many patients who live outside cities, getting and receiving specialised treatment can become problematic. The majority of specialist physicians are based in the major cities, often meaning frequent long-distance travel for cancer sufferers. The consequences can have a detrimental effect on a patient’s health and finances. Icon Group, Australia’s largest and fastest growing provider of cancer care services, will soon be putting AI in the hands of their oncologists, providing them with treatment options derived from established guidelines, medical literature and training from patient cases from around the world.

With 50,000 oncology research papers published every year, and the rate of advancement accelerating, Watson will provide oncologists with the latest information and global thinking at their fingertips, in an intelligent and relevant way. This will transform the patient/doctor interaction, allowing oncologists to show patients the evidence behind their treatment recommendations in a way that was not previously possible.

Artificail Intelligence show Medical Imagary of a brain

 #3 – Inspiring modern day artists

Can AI help an award-winning music producer build a deeper emotional connection with their audience? Grammy winning producer Alex Da Kid thinks so.

Alex wanted to know how his audiences thought and felt and from those insights, created a soundtrack to better engage their emotive responses. Sophisticated analytical tools made this possible. Watson AlchemyLanguage analyses years of natural language texts including newspapers, Wikipedia pages and court rulings. Once Watson learns the most significant cultural themes, Watson Tone Analyzer then reads news articles, blogs and tweets to find out what people felt about them. For Alex, Analyzer also studied lyrics and compositions of over 26,000 top billboard songs uncovering hidden patterns in sound, structure and emotion. Through WatsonBeat, artists can deconstruct music that allows them to express the thoughts they want. The collaboration between Alex and Watson gave Alex the perfect platform to work his magic.

AI captured both analytical data and emotional insights, giving Alex the ability to produce music that would, for the first time ever, listen to the audience.

#4 – Training Watson to spot Eye Disease

Did you know that approximately 1 million Australians have Diabetes? Disturbingly, this is set to double by the year 2025. One third of these diabetics will develop diabetic retinopathy (DR), the leading cause of reversible blindness in Australia. Early detection and treatment can reduce the risk of blindness by 95 percent. However early detection is extremely difficult, with 50 percent of diabetics potentially unaware they are slowly losing their sight.

IBM research is training machines to recognise the composition of a normal eye structure, and pinpoint tiny signs which may indicate the presence of DR. Moving beyond simple yes/no detection of these signs, the latest advancement can estimate the severity of the disease across five levels – None, mild, moderate, severe and proliferative. Insight into severity is important as it helps doctors determine the best course of treatment. The research is still in its early stages, but this technology could help ophthalmologists scale their expertise to reach far more patients across the nation.

 #5- Game on, Hackers – Here comes Watson

Recently we’ve seen the damaging effects of ongoing and persistent security threats with many significant incidents felt locally and internationally, need we mention Wannacry!

The volume of security incidents and available threat data far exceed the capacity of even the most skilled security professional – staying on top is increasingly difficult especially when we know we’re facing a global skills shortage of around 2 million cyber security professionals by 2019. 

Watson for Cyber Security augments a security analyst’s ability to identify and understand sophisticated threats, by tapping into unstructured data (blogs, websites, research papers) and correlating it with local security offenses. IBM QRadar Advisor with Watson combines the cognitive capabilities of Watson and the industry leading QRadar Security Analytics Platform to uncover hidden threats and automate insights, revolutionising the way security analysts work.

This combined with IBM’s ‘new collar’ approach to solving the much-needed cyber security resourcing battle is helping cyber professionals stay one step ahead of the world’s cyber criminals.

Artificial intelligence, or should we say augmented intelligence,  is changing life as we know it. Intelligent machines, instead of just being programmed to do a task step by step, are learning by recognising patterns, classifying data and learning from mistakes they make and experiences they have. This is the real world with augmented intelligence, amplifying and extending human capabilities, to help people do their jobs better. The true promise of this technology comes from Man and Machine working together, combining natural and augmented intelligence to make better informed decisions.

Artificial intelligence is here; Welcome to the cognitive era.

Find out about more ways AI is changing the world at A/NZ Watson Summit coming up in Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland- Register Here.

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