Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Cloud Predictions by Jerry Kurata and Barry Luijregts, Pluralsight. In this article, they share their predictions for the ways that AI, ML and the cloud will be used differently in 2020 and beyond.
This decade has seen a seismic shift in the role of technology, at work and at home. Just ten years ago, technology was a specialist discipline in the workplace, governed by experts. At home things were relatively limited and tech was more in the background. Today technology is at the centre of how everyone works, lives, learns and plays. This prominence is shifting the way we think about, use, interact with and the expectations we have for technology, and we wanted to share some reflections and predictions for the year ahead.
AI Jerry Kurata
Increased User Expectations
As users experience assistants like Alexa and Siri, and cars that drive themselves, the expectations of what applications can do has greatly increased. And these expectations will continue to grow in 2020 and beyond. Users expect a stores website or app to be able to identify a picture of an item and guide them to where the item and accessories for the item are in the store. And these expectations extend to consumers of the information such as a restaurant owner.
This owner should rightfully expect the website built for them to help with their business by keeping their site fresh. The site should drive business to the restaurant by determining the sentiment of reviews, and automatically display the most positive recent reviews to the restaurants front page.
AI/ML will go small scale
We can expect to see more AI/ML on smaller platforms from phones to IoT devices. The hardware needed to run AI/ML solutions is shrinking in size and power requirements, making it possible to bring the power and intelligence of AI/ML to smaller and smaller devices. This is allowing the creation of new classes of intelligent applications and devices that can be deployed everywhere, including:
AI/ML will expand the cloud
In the race for the cloud market, the major providers (Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud) are doubling down on their AI/ML offerings. Prices are decreasing, and the number and power of services available in the cloud are ever increasing. In addition, the number of low cost or free cloud-based facilities and compute engines for AI/ML developers and researchers are increasing.
This removes much of the hardware barriers that prevented developers in smaller companies or locales with limited infrastructure from building advanced ML models and AI applications.
AI/ML will become easier to use
As AI/ML is getting more powerful, it is becoming easier to use. Pre-trained models that perform tasks such as language translation, sentiment classification, object detection, and others are becoming readily available. And with minimal coding, these can be incorporated into applications and retrained to solve specific problems. This allows creating a translator from English to Swahili quickly by utilizing the power of a pre-trained translation model and passing it sets of equivalent phrases in the two languages.
There will be greater need for AI/ML education
To keep up with these trends, education in AI and ML is critical. And the need for education includes people developing AI/ML applications, and also C-Suite execs, product managers, and other management personnel. All must understand what AI and ML technologies can do, and where its limits exist. But of course, the level of AI/ML knowledge required is even greater for people involved with creating products.
Regardless of whether they are a web developer, database specialist, or infrastructure analyst, they need to know how to incorporate AI and ML into the products and services they create.
Cloud Barry Luijbregts
Cloud investment will increase
In 2019, more companies than ever adopted cloud computing and increased their investment in the cloud. In 2020, this trend will likely continue. More companies will see the benefits of the cloud and realize that they could never get the same security, performance and availability gains themselves. This new adoption, together with increased economies of scale, will lower prices for cloud storage and services even further.
Cloud will provide easier to use services
Additionally, 2020 will be the year where the major cloud providers will offer more and easier-to-use AI services. These will provide drag-and-drop modelling features and more, out-of-the-box, pre-trained data models to make adoption and usage of AI available for the average developers.
Cloud will tackle more specific problems
On top of that, in 2020, the major cloud vendors will likely start providing solutions that tackle specific problems, like areas of climate change and self-driving vehicles. These new solutions can be implemented without much technical expertise and will have a major impact in problem areas.
Looking further ahead
As we enter a new decade, we are on the cusp of another revolution, as we take our relationship with technology to the next level. Companies will continue to devote ever larger budgets to deploying the latest developments, as AI, machine learning and the cloud become integral to the successful running of any business, no matter the sector.
There have been murmurings that this increase in investment will have an impact on jobs. However, if the right technology is rolled out in the right way, it will only ever complement the human skillset, as opposed to replacing it. We have a crucial role to play in the overall process and our relationship with technology must always remain as intended; a partnership.
Jerry Kurata and Barry Luijregts are expert authors at Pluralsight and teach courses on topics including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), big data, computer science and the cloud. In recent years, both have seen first-hand the development of these technologies, the different tools that organisations are investing in and the changing ways they are used.
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