ENewsletter - January 2020
Artificial Intelligence: Too Scary or Exciting Technology?

For me, definitely scary. There are also obvious advantages.

Here are some top trends that experts see for Artificial Intelligence in 2020. I've linked to a couple of articles, but here are 4 trends that caught my attention:

  • Machines will get better at comprehension
  • Business processes will increasingly be monitored and refined by AI
  • AI will be ever-present in cyber security
  • AI will recognize us...even if we don't recognize it

Many companies are using chatbots on their websites (that little person/bubble that pops up and asks how they can help you). It appears to be an actual person, but is often a computer-generated conversation. Sometimes it's easy to tell when you're talking to a chatbot, but AI is getting increasingly sophisticated at mimicking human conversations. And who knows, we may find that a robot might just be more efficient at interpreting our questions and providing solutions than humans. (One of the scary parts....)

First there were robots on the assembly line; now AI is helping to automate necessary but time-consuming administrative tasks like filling in forms and generating reports and building diagrams. In my little world, my laptop will save my info so that my name, address, phone, etc. is automatically filled in at the click of a button.

Americans seem to have a love/hate relationship with cyber security. We love when it catches bad guys, but hate when it seems to intrude on our privacy. We especially appreciate AI when it can predict patterns, identify language and otherwise identify threats and prevent catastrophes.

Facebook recognizes us and our friends when we appear in photos on our friend's timelines. We've seen countless TV shows and movies where they bad guys are caught and identified on street cameras or the neighbor's RING video system. But it is a little unsettling to know that our every move is being captured on video somewhere.

What does AI mean for your business?

We're all familiar with the experience of looking at a product on a website, then having that exact product show up on our social channels or as an ad on other websites that we visit. As a consumer, it's a little creepy. On the other hand, I'd much rather see ads that are relevant to me than ads that are not (that's a FB setting you can control, by the way). As a marketer, its genius. Now we just need a way for the ads to disappear once we've purchased the product....

Artificial Intelligence is not just for major corporations. This article discusses ways in which small businesses can also benefit from AI, including using AI for analysis, to increase the effectiveness of platforms you already use, to capture additional customer data, help to automate customer service issues, track competitor activity and more.

Whatever your feelings about Artificial Intelligence, it's around us every day. Analyzing our behavior and buying patterns, capturing data from the apps we use, monitoring our entertainment viewing, tracking our movement and phone calls and more. Those who want to think of it as less scary can consider that, rather than creating artificial intelligence, we're augmenting our intelligence. What are your thoughts?

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