Artificial intelligence: not if but when

Image: PIX1861 Despite our increasing willingness to incorporate the newest technologies into our lives, the idea of a digital mind still seems a far flung futuristic dream to some, and a science fiction trope to others. Yet AI is tangibly close, and will trigger a paradigm shift like no other. It’s easy to dismiss forays into artificial intelligence as glorified chess-playing machines and well-designed chatbots, but developments are coming undeniably hard and exponentially fast. IBM’s Watson supercomputer is diagnosing and treating cancer patients more efficiently and more accurately than the most experienced medical professionals. In 2011, Watson famously beat previous winners of the US quiz show Jeopardy!, interpreting the questions from the host and answering in natural language. Baker & Hostetler, a US law firm, has announced that they are…

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