Science and TechArtificial Intelligence


What is artificial intelligence? An explanation of the tech buzzword

The artificial intelligence industry has exploded in growth over the past year, from chatbots to facial recognition.
A ChapGPT logo is seen on a smartphone in West Chester, Pa., Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023.
Posted at 5:41 PM, Jan 05, 2024

What exactly is considered artificial intelligence?

“AI is really an umbrella term because there’s lots of different types of technology that count as AI,” said Lee Tiedrich, a faculty fellow in law and responsible technology in the Duke Initiative for Science & Society at Duke University.

The AI industry has exploded in growth especially over the past year, and artificial intelligence is used as a buzzword in a lot of emerging technologies.

“People are calling things AI that are not necessarily artificial intelligence,” Tiedrich said.

At the end of last year, the Biden Administration signed an executive order on developing AI safely and responsibly. AI was defined as having “the meaning set forth in 15 U.S.C. 9401(3): a machine-based system that can, for a given set of human-defined objectives, make predictions, recommendations, or decisions influencing real or virtual environments.  Artificial intelligence systems use machine- and human-based inputs to perceive real and virtual environments; abstract such perceptions into models through analysis in an automated manner; and use model inference to formulate options for information or action.”

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“The ChatGPTs that have entered our lives so suddenly a little over a year ago are examples of AI that everybody can relate to,” Tiedrich said.

Another example is facial recognition technology that uses the inputs of people’s images to determine who they are.

What is not AI? Tiedrich said any tech that simply relies on calculation based on set rules with no inferences or speculation should not be called AI.

“Are there implicit or explicit objectives, objectives that you're trying to achieve with it? Are they making inferences from inputs, whether from training data, from prompts?,” Tiedrich said.

As AI evolves, Tiedrich said, the definitions and regulations can too.

“The standards of AI will evolve very quickly,” she said.

@scrippsnews What is artificial intelligence? As the industry continues to grow, experts explain what it is and what it isn't. #ArtificialIntelligence #tech ♬ original sound - Scripps News

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