Prof. Tom Mitchell of Carnegie Mellon University literally wrote the book on machine learning. He spoke about his work in the field of machine learning, artificial intelligence and cognitive neuroscience at an AI summit at the GMIC Beijing 2017. He also shared his vision of what AI technology can do for us in future.

“I think AI has the ability to vastly improve our quality of life by reducing pollution and congestion in our cities, improving our ability to communicate across languages, our medical care and much more, ” he said.

AI could improve our healthcare in future by shedding light on issues that could otherwise be missed. Mitchell, who is the head of the Machine Learning Department at CMU, also highlighted how AI programs could be used to customize online education to each student.

“A teacher only has a certain number of years and a certain amount of experience. But if you have a copy of an AI teaching program used by a 100,000 students, it would give more than a human teacher could in a 100 years of teaching.”

However, Mitchell cautioned against all encompassing adoption of AI. For one, he said he would not like to witness AI for military use or planting of smart AI viruses in computers.

“I will say that just like other technology, it deserves our attention and we need to speak up, especially people who understand the technology and can make the right choices.”

He explained that unlike previous breakthroughs, today we are witnessing the commercial success of AI. Private companies are investing more resources in research and development than governments.

“I’m starting to get a glimpse of AI in China and I think it is very exciting to see it growing both commercially and in terms of real contribution to research”.

(Top photo is Tom Mitchell speaking at the G-summit. Photo from GMIC)

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Masha Borak
Marsha contributes for AllChinaTech. She is a language expert from Croatia and holds a Master's degree from the University of Zagreb. She is interested in all things tech that she finds it hard to choose what to explore next. You can follow her on Twitter.

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