How AI Will Change Business and Tech

In the digital age, being able to make sense of all the data flooding into organizations is what separates the disrupters from the disrupted. Yet, the signal-to-noise ratio is often deafening, and identifying what matters is becoming increasingly challenging.

How can CIOs and other enterprise leaders transform data into information and knowledge? With the help of artificial intelligence (AI).

“We’re just at the beginning of seeing AI impact businesses and the rest of the economy,” says Bryan Catanzaro, vice president of applied deep learning research at Nvidia and one of the world’s preeminent experts on AI. “Every company will eventually have to face the fact that every company will have to be an AI company.”

Robotics, drones, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), 3D printing, the internet of things (IoT) and more will further revolutionize the way businesses operate. Hang onto your mouse because the ride is just beginning.

AI, deep learning and machine learning are already revolutionizing virtually every industry and every sector of the economy. Yet, as Catanzaro aptly puts it: “The trick is to find concrete projects that add value to the company.”

Catanzaro believes there are three key components to extracting maximum returns from data science and AI. First, it’s important to collect, generate and accumulate large volumes of data. Simply put: Data holds the secrets that hide in the invisible spaces that weren’t previously visible. Second, organizations will need more compute power to solve complex problems. This may involve deep learning methods or other tools. Third, algorithms are critical for unlocking the secrets that reside in data.

The question that CIOs and others should be asking, he says, is: “How do researchers frame problems in a way that can be solved with AI?” Today, this is often through cloud-based methods that apply massive computing power—recently in the form of GPUs—to address questions.

However, in the months and years ahead, the model may evolve beyond today’s neural nets. Training may occur in a more distributed manner, and local devices may become far more intelligent.

To be sure, a smarter IoT, more powerful chips and AI will change business and computing in profound ways. It will produce smarter drones, robots, wearables, speech and image processing, and better analytics.

“We will be solving problems that we never dreamed we could solve,” Catanzaro predicts, For now, he says, it’s crucial to think about how to apply the technology to problems where vast amounts of data exist. “The goal is to find truth in the data,” he explains.


Samuel Greengard
Samuel Greengard
Samuel Greengard writes about business, technology and other topics. His book, The Internet of Things (MIT Press) was released in the spring of 2015.

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