AI: Here Today, Everywhere Tomorrow? - InformationWeek

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Data Management // AI/Machine Learning
Commentary
1/26/2018
09:00 AM
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AI: Here Today, Everywhere Tomorrow?

Lots of enterprises have a long way to go before they roll out AI-based applications. Where are you on the path to AI?

Enterprise use of artificial intelligence is at a strange stage. We've seen some success stories, and a lot of organizations can envision new uses for AI. Yet, a fraction of enterprises have AI-based applications in production -- with estimates ranging from one company in 25 to one company in five.

Still, "AI" and "machine learning" seem to be on everyone's lips. It makes you wonder how much of the noise is just talk, and how much of it is action.

I'm curious about the state of AI adoption in the InformationWeek audience. With that in mind, we have posted a Flash Poll, Closer Look: AI in the Enterprise.

Image: Shutterstock
Image: Shutterstock

I hope you will cast your vote and share your thoughts on where your organization stands in implementing AI, whether you have apps in production, have ideas for using AI in the future, or are stuck in a fog wondering how you will get through the a few dozen other must-do IT projects before you can think about AI.

Last week, I shared some thoughts on our affiliate site, AllAnalytics.com, in discussing the relationships among analytics, AI, and the Internet of Things. It led me to recall how AI has always seemed just around the corner, even when I got into the tech publishing field almost 35 years ago.

A couple things have changed since those days, with technology taking major strides just in the past few years. First, we have enabling technologies today, such as powerful processors, analytics tools, data management software, cloud services, and mobile devices that generate data a million times faster than Alan Turing ever could have imagined. The second big change has been in how we think of AI: For many decades we waited for someone to deliver "AI software." That never happened.

In reality, what happened was that we finally came to acknowledge that AI is a capability that can serve as a feature in the applications that we use every day. AI can strengthen the connection to the customer in a CRM system. It lends a voice to personal assistance devices, allowing us to call them chatbots. It helps to optimize machine performance in factories. AI enhances search tools in a remarkable way, reviewing thousands of medical journals and reports in minutes to identify treatments for cancer, a task that would take a team of researchers entire careers to do on their own. Yes, there are tools that help you develop AI, but artificial intelligence isn't going to show up in a box from Amazon, although Amazon might remind you that you are interested in it.

We hope the poll provides insight into the state of AI in your organization and those of your peers.

Now, if you would like to understand the state of AI on still a grander scale, check out these recent InformationWeek feature articles:

AI Begins to Infiltrate the Enterprise

AI Has a Foothold in Business, Now for the Next Steps

Is It Time for Your Organization to Invest in AI?

How Innovation is Changing the Analytics Landscape

Deloitte: 5 Trends That Will Drive Machine Learning Adoption

A Check-Up for Artificial Intelligence in the Enterprise

 

Explore how AI and machine learning have the potential to transform the way we interact with our existing and future enterprise systems. Attend the AI Summit at Interop ITX, April 30-May 4, 2018. Register now!

 

Jim Connolly is a versatile and experienced technology journalist who has reported on IT trends for more than two decades. As editorial director of InformationWeek and Network Computing, he oversees the day-to-day planning and editing on the site. Most recently he was editor ... View Full Bio
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