AI evening a success

Post by 
Graeme Curwen
Published 
January 29, 2019

Last Thursday we welcomed Katie Gibbs from our AI partner Heron to present on AI at our bi-monthly discussion evening. Katie did a great job, with positive feedback from everyone there. Katie (with support from her Heron colleagues) brought AI very much to life, and got us thinking about why businesses are still not fully exploiting the potential of AI due to fear and a lack of trust.

The subject of AI was certainly one that struck a cord with those in attendance. Once again our informal setting meant there was on-going debate and interaction throughout.  Katie presented various insights and talking points that helped the room explore not simply how AI can help businesses today, but how AI is still maturing and awaiting a tipping point of acceptance. Specific points discussed included (but certainly weren't limited to):

  • AI success and failure stories, including Microsoft's AI bot (Tay) which had to be switched off after turning abusive, and how, in contrast, a similar bot launched in China turned out to be very polite and hence successful
  • How we should perhaps be talking more about augmenting human decision making, rather than simply AI
  • How people are using more AI than ever, but we often don't realise this even when we are using the likes of Alexa in our homes
  • The wide-spread negativity towards AI in the press (with Terminator pictures supporting most AI articles) and how far we felt this was sensationalist or a true reflection of AI's potential
  • Why we trust more in humans than AI, even when AI is clearly less error prone. For example, someone stated they wouldn't trust AI to ever drive their car

Once again the bar has been set high for future evening.  Our next discussion evening will be on How to Foster High Performance, which is fitting given the great job we witnessed from Katie and the Heron gang.

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