Fads come and go; even in terms of business operations. While some organizations are just starting to understand and apply what AI, or artificial intelligence, is all about, others are beyond the hype and starting a new program of machine learning. Machine learning already has huge implications for housing, which will certainly be evolving in the future.

Artificial Intelligence has crested the top of the Gartner hype cycle, and is on the lips of every technical marketing exec. Companies are doing things with it, but many projects are still proving out the concepts. You can’t talk about the weather these days without a gimmicky, gee-whiz weather chatbot trying to impress you with its opinion on the rain – and sometimes getting it wrong. And let’s just pretend Microsoft Tay never happened.

There’s a chasm between many current AI deployments and a mature, grown-up approach with sensible business benefits. What do companies need to know to get from here to there?

When artificial intelligence first emerged as a discipline, scientists had great hopes for it. They wanted to create ‘hard’ AI systems that mimicked humans - HAL 9000-style monoliths that would do everything that people could. The problem with that is that we don’t really understand how human intelligence works.

After AI failed to deliver on its initial promises, scientists scaled back their expectations, instead focusing on specific tasks that they could tackle with nondeterministic algorithms. This is ‘narrow’ AI, and even though it’s a step back from general AI, it still gets important jobs done. Today’s software won’t argue with you about the world economy while fixing you a cup of tea or make you feel better when you’re depressed. It can still recognize your face, though, and understand you when you tell it to turn your living room lights on.

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