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‘Artificial Intelligence yet to make its mark in India’

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By Nishant Arora

From taking care of businesses to fulfilling personal needs, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is very much a part of the daily lives of people across the globe with global technological giants judiciously utilizing its benefits. However, it has yet to make a mark in India.

When Amit Singhal, an India-born techie who joined Google nearly 15 years ago practically reigning at Google Search since then, decided to quit this month and hand the baton over to the head of the technology giant’s artificial intelligence (AI) chief, the message was clear: AI was the future that had arrived.

Amid all the brouhaha over machines acquiring near-human intelligence, is India ready to embrace the change?

“For the Indian market, we might see some serious AI in action around 2020, and by 2025, there should be considerable advancements,” Faisal Kawoosa, lead analyst, Telecoms Practice, at market research and consulting firm CyberMedia Research (CMR), told reporters.

According to Thomas George, SBU Head of CMR, there were several studies projecting AI becoming mainstream within five years. “However, this appears possible only in the high-end segments in the advanced and developed markets and not in India,” he added.

According to a latest forecast by the research firm MarketsandMarkets, the AI market is estimated to reach $5 billion by 2020 globally. “The increasing use of machine learning technology in the advertising and media and finance sectors, and the growing demand for AI across diversified application areas are driving the growth of the AI market,” the findings showed.

In India, the top-notch technology companies are yet to make a substantial progress in the business of AI.

While Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has Ignio — a neural science-based automation platform that optimises IT operations, Infosys has recently launched AiKiDo project that will focus on AI, knowledge-based IT and design thinking to help enterprise clients.

Wipro, on the other hand, has an AI platform “Holmes”- a rich set of cognitive computing services for the development of digital virtual agents, cognitive process automation, visual computing applications, robotics and drones. To fulfill its AI dreams, Wipro recently acquired a strategic stake in Vicarious, an AI company based in San Francisco, California.

But this does not seem enough when it comes to the practical application of AI in the country on a large scale. “Although industry circles have been talking about AI for more than a decade, it is yet to make its mark in India,” George said.

Globally, Microsoft, Google and Facebook are leading the way when it comes to incorporating AI into the workplace — transforming the experience of “machine learning” via “deep neural networks” of hardware and software that nearly approximate neurons in the human brain.

“Machine intelligence is crucial to our search vision of building a truly intelligent assistant that connects our users to information and actions in the real world,” Google said in a statement recently.

John Giannandrea, who led Google’s machine learning efforts and is going to replace Singhal, is applying the technology to products such as image recognition for Google Photos search and the smart reply for Google Inbox.

In a cheer for the AI community, Google’s AlphaGo, a program of its artificial intelligence arm DeepMind, recently defeated the reigning human champion of Go – a complex Chinese board game that is considered the “quintessential unsolved problem” for machine intelligence.

At Facebook, its CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to focus on AI and is even thinking of a simple AI to run his home and workplace like the famous Jarvis character in the Hollywood movie “Iron Man”.

According to Chris Bishop, managing director at Microsoft Research, 2016 will be the year of AI. “During 2016, we will see the emergence of new silicon architectures that are tuned to the intensive workloads of machine learning, offering a major performance boost over GPUs (Graphics Processing Units),” he posted.

In his first “Ask Me Anything” session on the social networking website Reddit last year, famed theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking said that we evolved to be smarter than our ape-like ancestors and scientist Albert Einstein was smarter than his parents.

“If they become that clever, then we may face an ‘intelligence explosion’, as machines develop the ability to engineer themselves to be far more intelligent,” he said in reply to a question on the discussion board.

That might eventually result in “machines whose intelligence exceeds ours by more than ours exceeds that of snails”, Hawking answered.

That may be a daunting task for people to absorb. But perhaps human intelligence will evolve to do just that. (IANS) (Image source: digitaltrends.com)

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Can Doctors Become Better With The Help Of Artificial Intelligence

The research now is on breast cancer, but doctors predict artificial intelligence will eventually make a difference in all forms of cancer and beyond.

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Liver Cancer, Cancer, Artificial Intelligece
A high-magnification image from a 2012 glioblastoma case is seen as an example in this College of American Pathologists image released from Northfield. VOA

Teacher Rishi Rawat has one student who is not human, but a machine.

Lessons take place at a lab inside the University of Southern California’s (USC) Clinical Science Center in Los Angeles, where Rawat teaches artificial intelligence, or AI.

To help the machine learn, Rawat feeds the computer samples of cancer cells.

“They’re like a computer brain, and you can put the data into them and they will learn the patterns and the pattern recognition that’s important to making decisions,” he explained.

AI may soon be a useful tool in health care and allow doctors to understand biology and diagnose disease in ways that were never humanly possible.

Cell Pattern, Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence through machine learning can detect complex patterns in cell arrangement that would be difficult for humans to recognize. VOA

Doctors not going away

“Machines are not going to take the place of doctors. Computers will not treat patients, but they will help make certain decisions and look for things that the human brain can’t recognize these patterns by itself,” said David Agus, USC’s professor of medicine and biomedical engineering, director at the Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine, and director at the university’s Center for Applied Molecular Medicine.

Rawat is part of a team of interdisciplinary scientists at USC who are researching how Artificial Intelligence and machine learning can identify complex patterns in cells and more accurately identify specific types of breast cancer tumors.

Once a confirmed cancerous tumor is removed, doctors still have to treat the patient to reduce the risk of recurrence. The type of treatment depends on the type of cancer and whether the tumor is driven by estrogen. Currently, pathologists would take a thin piece of tissue, put it on a slide, and stain with color to better see the cells.

“What the pathologist has to do is to count what percentage of the cells are brown and what percentage are not,” said Dan Ruderman, a physicist who is also assistant professor of research medicine at USC.

health, artificial Intelligence
Health would also not predict wealth as effectively as it does overall adoption and future readiness. Pixabay

The process could take days or even longer. Scientists say artificial intelligence can do something better than just count cells. Through machine learning, it can recognize complicated patterns on how the cells are arranged, with the hope, in the near future of making a quick and more reliable diagnosis that is free of human error.

“Are they disordered? Are they in a regular spacing? What’s going on exactly with the arrangement of the cells in the tissue,” described Ruderman of the types of patterns a machine can detect.

“We could do this instantaneously for almost no cost in the developing world,” Agus said.

Computing power improves

Scientists say the time is ripe for the marriage between computer science and cancer research.

“All of a sudden, we have the computing power to really do it in real time. We have the ability of scanning a slide to high enough resolution so that the computer can see every little feature of the cancer. So it’s a convergence of technology. We couldn’t have done this, we didn’t have the computing power to do this several years ago,” Agus said.

Cell Pattern, artificial Intelligence
High resolution slide scanners plus stronger computer power allows for the possibility for AI to help doctors more accurately figure out the subtype of breast cancer a patient has. VOA

Data is key to having a machine effectively do its job in medicine.

“Once you start to pool together tens and hundreds of thousands of patients and that data, you can actually [have] remarkable new insight, and so AI and machine learning is allowing that. It’s enabling us to go to the next level in medicine and really take that art to new heights,” Agus said.

Also Read: Researchers Develop Nano Technology That Offers Hope For Better Cancer Testing

Back at the lab, Rawat is not only feeding the computer more cell samples, he also designs and writes code to ensure that the algorithm has the ability to learn features unique to cancer cells.

The research now is on breast cancer, but doctors predict artificial intelligence will eventually make a difference in all forms of cancer and beyond. (VOA)