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New horizons of technology – The Hindu

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New horizons of technology - The Hindu

“Get someone like Siri or Alexa to clean all your mess while playing songs on mobile. I am fed up now.”

If you are an engineering student, chances are there that you must have heard this sentence several times from your mother. Technology has been reducing our work for years — from automatic vacuum cleaners to Siri and Google Assistant in our smartphones and from booking cabs to e-mail filters, technology has always helped us reduce our efforts.

Among the many surprises that technology has been offering us recently is Artificial Intelligence. Though AI is a widely researched field, it surely has many facets that are yet to be explored. We are already using its applications.

Though the term Artificial Intelligence is used alongside Machine Learning (ML), they are not the same. They share a relation similar to father and son. AI is the ability of machines to carry out tasks that we would consider as smart and ML is the application of AI wherein machines access the data and learn themselves. AI also has other applications apart from ML. Natural language processing, image recognition, and speech to text are some of the applications which share a similar bond of father and son with AI as ML does.

Riding using Uber and Ola would not have been possible without AI. Estimating the time of arrival, charges and the route is monitored by AI systems. Networking sites such as Facebook use image recognition to detect faces in photos while you tag people. Isn’t it surprising that a machine can read a photograph and tell who it is? Not only this, e-commerce websites use this technology to recommend their users products by maintaining a log of goods that are more likely to be bought together. Also, you must have applied filters to your mailbox to categorise e-mails based on the content. Applying filters is very much helpful to sort mails and make the mailbox more manageable. Spam was the very first application of the filter. Primary, social and promotions are the common filters of Gmail that keep our mails sorted. Surprisingly, this is also an application of AI. Things like autocorrect are helping us already, by suggesting words that give more sense to our messages. We all reply to e-mails through the suggestions that we get after clicking the reply option, don’t we? It is surely very much easier to just click on those suggestions and reply than thinking about what exactly to reply.

Ever wondered, how Netflix, Amazon, and even YouTube recommend us programs? The answer remains the same, AI! This is done by using data mining, which is also a tool of AI.

Also, our favourite virtual assistants, Siri and Google Assistant, are the applications of AI that provide almost 95% accuracy. By just saying “Ok Google”, Google Assistant is there to answer all our questions. Amazon Alexa, which helps us play songs, adjusts the lights in the house just by the command “Alexa, turn on the lights.” It even adapts to our voice over time and can operate from the next room. To help us work on laptops, we have Microsoft Cortana helping in searching apps and setting events, providing 90% accuracy.

So now you know, AI is already being used by us in every step of our lives, making the use of technology easier.

Given a chance we should thank these inventions for making human lives easier. These are just a few examples that we all normally use in daily life. There are many more wherein AI is used.

Surprising your mom by bringing a robot that will clean all your mess and help her as well will not be that difficult in the near future. She will be definitely happy to see someone obeying her orders, won’t she?

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