Some of the biggest tech companies today are competing to deliver the best, and most innovative artificial intelligence, writes Saoirse Kerrigan
Tech

Breakthroughs in artificial intelligence (AI) technologies are coming on in leaps and bounds. Commercial, fully autonomous vehicles are on the horizon, and many of us use AI assistants like Alexa in our homes every single day.

Our embracing of AI has been swift, and some of the biggest names in tech are working tirelessly to keep up the momentum of technological progression.

While we still have to wait for some truly exciting breakthroughs, we can enjoy tantalising glimpses of what is to come. This includes projects currently in development, and newly launched platforms that could inform the AIs of the near future.

Here is just a quick run-through of some of the most exciting AI platforms from some of the technology industry’s biggest names.

1. Google: Making AI more accessible and less dangerous
Fairly recently, Google had come under fire for its involvement in AI weapons development. After much public outcry over its Pentagon-backed drone project, the company decided to re-evaluate its approach to AI. Just last month, Google released a set of guidelines outlining its commitment to ethical AI development.

Luckily, there is more to Google’s involvement in AI than military endeavours. Just this month, it introduced its cloud-based, AI-powered platform which will allow developers to work with container-wrapped software applications. The Cloud Services Platform would allow developers to access the tools they need from anywhere, at any time.

This all comes fresh off the trail of Google’s realistic voice functions and AI-human interactions. While very much embroiled in steady competition with Amazon and Microsoft, Google is pulling out all the stops to develop and deliver a variety of AI to suit multiple needs.

2. Amazon: Expanding the scope of Amazon web services
Like Google, Amazon is showing its dedication to developing cloud-based AI services that will benefit developers. At the recent AWS Summit, the company unveiled the new computing services available on its cloud platform, as well as its more recent efforts into machine learning.

The star of its announcement was the changes made to its SageMaker service, which allows developers to build and test applications in the cloud. The introduction of SageMaker Streaming Algorithms means that developers will have the ability to stream large amounts of data and efficiently train custom machine learning applications.

Source: BestAIAssistant/Flickr

3. Apple: Improving Siri with new management
Contrary to what you might think, Apple has been lagging behind its competitors when it comes to AI development. Despite the commercial popularity of Apple products, Siri and its other AI developments have failed to match the levels of data currently being boasted by Google and Amazon.

That may, however, be about to change. Recently, Apple’s Core ML Team welcomed former Google head of AI, John Giannandrea, as its chief of machine learning and AI strategy. As part of his new position in the company, Giannandrea will be reporting directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

This isn’t the only move Apple has made in an attempt to boost its AI profile. In 2017, it acquired a number of AI start-ups with an aim to better compete with its rivals. These start-ups included Israeli facial-recognition company, RealFace, and SensoMotoric Instruments, which uses eye-tracking technology for application in VR. Both acquisitions point towards Apple’s move into more sophisticated, visual AI platforms that could see the company catch up with its competitors.

Source: Maurizio Pesce/Flickr

4. Intel: Pushing the boundaries of AI and technology news
Intel has become incredibly serious about AI in recent years. It has already paired up with Chinese tech giant Baidu to develop AI for autonomous vehicles.

The collaboration was announced at this year’s Baidu Create conference in Beijing, where Intel revealed its involvement in the Baidu Apollo autonomous car project, and its decision to utilise a Responsibility Sensitive Safety (RSS) model.

Further to its work in autonomous vehicles, Intel has also partnered with Samsung in South Korea to explore the possibilities of using AI in healthcare applications. Together, the companies hope to create an AI capable of researching different diseases and even detecting tumours.

Finally, Intel has joined forces with ‘Forbes magazine’ to create a digital publication devoted entirely to the news on the latest AI developments. With so many interesting collaborations in the pipeline, Intel could very well pull into the lead of the AI race.

Source: Steve Jurvetson/Flickr

5. IBM: Using AI to treat cancer and debate humans
Tech industry veteran IBM has already made headlines multiple times over the past two years thanks to its revolutionary AI, Watson. Since its conception, Watson has been utilised in autonomous vehicles and day-to-day business endeavours.

As part of Watson Health, the AI was also used in a partnership with the US Department of Veterans Affairs to prepare treatment plans for cancer patients based on their specific genomic data.

The project was launched in 2016, and was extended recently. The use of Watson in this project has been showing the benefits of using AI in a medical setting, where data can be compiled and assessed faster than any human medical professional possibly could.

Last month also saw Watson take on its first set of human opponents in debates. Project Debater has no clear commercial goals yet, but it has proven to be an impressive display of technology and another fine example of IBM’s work in the field of artificial intelligence.

Source: Frank Schwichtenberg/Wikimedia Commons

6. Ford: Driving forward with AI-powered vehicles
Ford hasn’t been quiet about its ambitious, AI-powered plans. At the beginning of this year, Ford revealed its plans to create a smart city run on a variety of different AI and smart technologies.

The plans featured a centralised AI – the Transportation Mobility Cloud – which could track data from the city in real time, and orchestrate all vehicles, citizens, and stop lights efficiently.

It is clear that Ford is moving forward with its plans, if recent news is anything to go by. Just this week Ford created Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC, in a bid to accelerate its autonomous vehicle efforts.

The LLC will be based in Detroit, and is eligible for third party funding. This is a strong indication that the AI utopia envisioned in Ford’s smart city could soon be in production.

7. Microsoft: Saving the environment through AI
Recently, Microsoft announced its partnership with National Geographic as part of an effort to fund conservation research around the globe. The project will give data scientists access to Microsoft AI as part of the Earth Innovation Grant. The Grant programme is an expansion of Microsoft’s 2017 AI For Earth programme, which awarded more than 35 grants globally.

Also recently, Microsoft released information on its Dynamics 365 AI, which is due to be rolled out between October of this year and March 2019.

The notes included information on AI for Sales app, which is designed to help companies with making deals. Though not as focused on the individual consumer as many of its competitors, Microsoft’s latest moves in AI certainly prove the rapid spread of the technology throughout different industries and sectors.

This article was written by Saoirse Kerrigan and is reproduced with kind permission from InterestingEngineering.com. Find the link to the original article here.

http://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/a-aai.jpghttp://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/a-aai-300x300.jpgDavid O'RiordanTechAI,Apple,Google,Intel Ireland,Microsoft
Breakthroughs in artificial intelligence (AI) technologies are coming on in leaps and bounds. Commercial, fully autonomous vehicles are on the horizon, and many of us use AI assistants like Alexa in our homes every single day. Our embracing of AI has been swift, and some of the biggest names in...