What’s Real, Possible, and Concerns Regarding Machine Learning, AI,
and the Public
Many in the public forget that artificial intelligence has been
thought about for quite some time and we are now in what some posit
the “third wave” of innovation in this space. That said, like all hot
technologies, there are several real advance as well as a lot of hype.
Current it’s nearly impossible to tune into the business news without
hearing about Smart Cars, Cognitive Computing, Smart homes or the
algorithms that are fundamentally changing fields from finance to
healthcare; from education to advertising.
And while there is no royal road to geometry, there is a superhighway
to AI — and historically it has been paved by the U.S. government.
From DARPA to the Pentagon; from NASA to the research grants that have
enabled the MIT AI Labs, the U.S. government has been one of the most
steadfast patrons of Artificial Intelligence from the time of the
field’s inception. Through both of the AI winters, and into what now
looks to be the final spring, the government has remained at the
forefront of machine intelligence.
As AI is poised to simultaneously become both seamlessly ubiquitous
and radically disruptive, we are consequently faced with a future that
is eclipsed by a host of collateral concerns regarding the potential
for massive unemployment, the erosion of privacy – and of course, the
Cassandra call that tells us AI might prove to be an existential
threat to our very existence. When it comes to AI, the zeitgeist seems
to have become pervade by equal parts hope and fear.
Moving beyond theory and speculation and into practice, we have
assembled a panel of leading practicioners who are working in and with
public service who will join us to discuss the real-world future of
machine learning, AI, and the public.
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