It is very good to be back. Personally I felt that the break was way too long, but something happened, even before the break. I found something amazing, an event that happens once a month called #AIHappyHour. It is this awesome event that moves around and last time I have been was at IBM and as it happen to be, the next event is today at AUT, my home University.
The event opened my eyes to the beauty of AI. I, along with many people, have this preconceived notion of AI being somewhere far in the deep future, Star Trek or Terminator levels of future. Isuru Fernando, the main IBM Watson (the AI) guy in New Zealand and his main point of conversation besides showcasing what Watson can do is that AI is here.
He demos Watson by showing how Watson can be used for cooking. We know that at the heart of it cooking is chemistry, and some molecules and chemicals work well better than others. Watson was paired with a New Zealand head chef to create a menu specifically created between the chef and the AI. The way it worked is that the chef input ingredients to chef Watson and it returned a list with a bunch of pairings rated out of 100 percent, so Watson was creating links between ingredients that the head chef just cant imagine because the amount of time it takes just to test and the astronomical amounts of permutation within the combinations.
This really showed me the real use of AI, it is used side by side by humans, not some overbearing overlord that will shoot humans, but AI is a tool, a very powerful self learning tool with infinite possibilities.
He explained why Watson playing Jeopardy is exceptionally difficult because it wasn’t a question and answer type of game show, it is an answer and question show. How the problem presented to Watson computationally more difficult than a show like Who Wants to be a Millionaire.