Through technology, the future that we all marveled as children is slowly and subtly coming true. No, flying cars and food capsules are still not a thing, but there is a collective database filled with information from around the world, there exists the ability to speak and see a person thousands of miles away, and there are cars that can drive themselves. It is weird to acknowledge that the things that were once people’s far-fetched fantasies are coming into reality. In a way, no one ever stops to think about how amazing that is.
One of the most overlooked forms of technology right now is artificial intelligence, or AI for short. AI is basically the concept of computers functioning in a way that emulates human intelligence. This entails a lot of different things. In general, computers are basically dumb. While they can accomplish a lot of amazing tasks in an incredibly short amount of time, any action they do requires the influence of a human being. This means that their ability is somewhat limited to human ability. The concept of AI challenges this notion of computers being dumb by essentially trying to make them smart.
There has been gradual success in AI. The first most notable and groundbreaking form of AI was IBM’s Deep Blue, a computer program that played chess. It had the ability to memorize tons of chess strategies and would learn by playing against the people. It even beat world chess champion and grandmaster Gary Kasparov. Dragon System’s software was another intriguing AI that was able to recognize speech patterns. AI is even getting to the point of being able to resemble the consciousness of humans with Kismet, a robot that can recognize and show emotion.
AI has gotten so advanced it has become pervasive within society. Basically, everyone uses AI in some form or another whether it be asking Siri a question on the iPhone or ordering something on Amazon through Alexa. Companies use AI to call people on their phone and send messages through social media. AI has made things convenient and efficient for a lot of organizations, and it is just as effective when dealing with education.
Regarding education, there are some advantages AI has over humans as teachers. It is a lot easier for an AI to answer a question a student may have due to it not needing to take time to stop and think about the question. This allows for students to be able to get caught up quickly in lessons even if they get confused. Additionally, AI technology is more flexible with time since it has no other purpose other than to perform its function. This allows students to learn at their own time and convenience. AI can even teach around the student’s ideal learning style. This allows for students to best understand what they are learning and in a way that is most engaging to them. AI is also typically blended with eLearning, which is basically education done through the internet. eLearning sites such as School Group want to use AI as a way to educate people all over the world so that everyone can get a good education.
In a lot of ways, the future is now—or at least just around the corner. While AI technology as an education tool is nowhere near perfect yet, understanding its uses gives a glimpse into a knowledgeable future.