Computers are continuing to change our lives as the sophistication of the human machine interface develops and becomes more powerful.
** See www.ucd.ie/thinkbigger/research **
[Producers: Dominic Martella & Lisa Flannery (University College Dublin). Filmed by Tiny Ark on location at University College Dublin, Ireland.]
Backed up with software that learns from its mistakes, artificial intelligence is already augmenting human performance and intelligence in ways that would have been impossible only a few years ago.
Efforts to develop a human-like synthetic intelligence have advanced the growing supply of the feedstock needed to make it work, vast amounts of data that can be mined for hidden patterns. The computer programme ploughs through the mass of data but it is still up to the human operator to pluck out what is important.
UCD Professor Barry Smyth lives in this science fiction-like world, developing systems that support human-centred services that can really change lives and the way we currently do things. Artificial intelligence will change lives, he says, with better medical diagnostics, cars that drive themselves and a new kind of “personal assistant” that can do anything from keeping you connected to the office to helping you run a faster marathon.
“Artificial intelligence is not so much a replacement as an augmentation,” he says. It is not about replacing humans with robots. “It will be more interesting in that we will work together with machines and then real power emerges.”
Professor Smyth holds the Digital Chair of computer science in University College Dublin’s College of Science. He is also a founding director of the Insight Centre for Data Analytics, a multi disciplinary, multi institutional research centre that supports 450 researchers working in big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning. It collaborates with 80 partner companies and has a budget of about €100m supported by Science Foundation Ireland.
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