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What’s the Difference Between AI and Machine Learning? Posted on Jun 18 - 2017

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 As computer systems become smarter than humans, we should learn the difference between our new overlords.

Buzzwords can help get a lot of attention on the web. But while these SEO keywords might help people find what they are looking for, they may also add fluff and garbage to searches. With terms like 3D printing, and IIoT eliciting such a positive response, there’s no end in sight. Add artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, neural networks, and deep learning into the mix, and it can be confusing to keep up with which is which. So, to begin:

What is AI?

AI: Artificial Intelligence (AI) is usually defined as the science of making computers do things that require intelligence when done by humans. AI has had some success in limited, or simplified, domains (Courtesy of AlanTuring.net).

First, there are different types of artificial intelligence (AI): weak and strong.  Weak AI might behave as though a robot or manufacturing line is thinking on its own. However, it’s supervised programming, which means there is a programmed output, or action for given inputs. 

Strong AI is a system that might actually change an output based on given goals and input data. A program could do something it wasn’t programmed to if it notices a pattern and determines a more efficient way of accomplishing the goal it was given.

For example, when an AI program was instructed to obtain the highest score it could in the video game Breakout, it was able to learn how to perform better and was able to outperform humans in just 2.5 hours. Researchers let the program run. To their surprise, the program developed a strategy that was not in the software. It would focus on one spot of bricks to poke a hole so the ball would get behind the wall. This minimizes the work, as the computer no longer has to move the bat while the score would increase. This also minimizes the chances of missing the ball and ending the game. View More

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