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Is It Time For More Transparency In Artificial Intelligence?

(Last Updated On: December 11, 2017)

In 1990, the world didn’t have “connected devices.” The ‘unplugged’ era didn’t know of push notifications, interruptions, and everything was analog — things were human.

The term, “artificial intelligence,” was coined by John McCarthy in 1956. The journey to understand if machines can think arrived before then. Alan Turing wrote a paper on the notion of machines being able to simulate human beings and the ability to do intelligent things like play Chess.

When the Internet began to take off about 1995, computers became connected and the infamous “you’ve got mail” was a novelty. Soon, computer users were getting interrupted by people, companies, and spammers, all sending electronic messages at random moments.

Now, in 2017, we have entered the mobile arena. People have not just one, but multiple devices, which are connected. The problem is the machines don’t know which someone is using. The default is to notify the user on each device. Finding content is just as frustrating, and we take the need for specific interactions as a proxy for technological friction.

The solution? There is hope artificial intelligence will fix all this. Maybe not the scenario Elon Musk sees as enslaving everyone, but a more human-centric domain of artificial intelligence  called “Context-Awareness.”

AI researcher is defined as how a device takes actions to maximize the chance of success. Cycles in research and development into artificial intelligence have happened with regularity ever since McCarthy first fronted the concept.

Evolution alternated between disappointment, funding problems and glimpses of success. Now, in the 21st century, techniques are growing as vast amounts of data, and theoretical understandings become an essential part technology in general.

Indrasen Poola, an AI Technologist with Cisco Systems, Mr. Poola began work in San Francisco in January 2013. His life and work have each been devoted to increasing the value and client-friendly use of artificial intelligence in America. His expertise has not gone unrecognized, and he has been named one of the top 100 Medium writers on the subject.

Mr. Poola is taking the lead exploring ways to make artificial intelligence work for, and not against, us.

Notification On One Device — Not Multiples

One example. Mr. Poola is pushing. He wants to see the Internet move toward a development which makes sure phones and computers grow smart enough to know where to route many notifications.

“I can see the day when cars will drive themselves, already knowing the destination,” he says. “Our beds will monitor our sleep and anticipate when we wake so that fresh coffee is ready in the kitchen.”

Mr. Poola says, “Everything can be aggregated and are the results of having ubiquitous computing. A person will receive notifications on the device which is nearest.”

Sound Crazy?

The idea of a smart-device recognizing the location of a user and forwarding notifications to a specific spot may sound crazy.

There are already historical examples of technologies which followed a similar path. One example is electricity. In the 1800s, electricity was tangible. It was expensive, hard to produce and would cut out often. It was dangerous as well as a person could easily be electrocuted and homes frequently burned down from electrically-started fires. People even believed oil laps were safer.

As electricity matured it became cheaper. It also increased in reliability and safety. Eventually, it became available everywhere: in the walls, lamps, and cars. Electricity became ubiquitous and we stopped noticing it. “The same thing has happened today with artificial intelligence and connected devices,” said Mr. Poola.

Context-Awareness

Mr. Poola is working on building the computing future. Giving gadgets the skill to sense and react to varying and changing context is called “context-awareness.”

One way to think of context-awareness is through the combination of four layers:

  1. Device layer,
  2. Individual layer,
  3. Social layer, and
  4. Environmental layer

Device Layer

This layer is all about making computers ‘talk’ to each other.

Individual Layer

This includes everything linked to a specific person such as location, calendar, emails and health records, just to name a few.

Social Layer

These layer models the relationship between people.

Environmental Layer

Everything else. The catch-all. Areas such as the weather, buildings, streets, trees, and cars are some of the items included.

With a better understanding and representation of social connections, for example, we can use it to perform better natural language processing of calendar events and know when to send a particular email or the birthday of a receptionist for a person with whom we’ve been trying to conduct business.

Enjoy The Real World Once More

Mr. Poola says “It’s about giving people back the freedom to experience the real world again.”

“Artificial Intelligence will make technology disappear from our consciousness, computer technology will become transparent  and the world will feel unplugged again,”



Author bio: Indrasen Poola

Indrasen Poola is s technologist working and researching in Silicon Valley, California

About the author

Sidharth Pk

Sidharth. Professional Blogger. Android dev. Audiophile. Find us on Google+
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