Bear Witness

The Many Arms of AI

From newsfeed to real feeds, AI is a large part of life.

Uzor Awuzie, Student Life Editor

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As technology progresses, artificial intelligence is advancing — or rather, simplifying — our lives.

While the concept of “artificial intelligence,” or AI, is normally associated with robots mimicking human knowledge, many variations of it already exist in communities, schools, and homes. But how has the reliance on machine learning changed our way of living? What does it suggest for the future?

Technology has already created a major impact in how the average school functions. The stacks of textbooks that used to break backs can easily be replaced with thousands of educational websites on the internet. Essays were written by hand and in cursive, but now can be done easily with computers at a faster rate. With AI, our lives are constantly changing in and outside of school.

“I think it’s [artificial intelligence] going to affect high school in that it might make certain learning aspects obsolete and that certain skills you need to learn will be solve by artificial intelligence, and that’s obviously a big thing because robots take jobs-like the manufacturing world is run by robots basically — so I feel that somewhere down the line, artificial intelligence will be a big part of our lives,” senior Chase Morrison, a robotics student, said.

The use of social media goes beyond technology. Every day, as soon as you log onto your favorite app, artificial intelligence is working to make you experience worth it. When you upload photos to Facebook, the service automatically highlights faces and suggests friends to tag. ML algorithms are programmed to mimic the structure of the human brain and power facial recognition software.

Pinterest and other social media apps now use AI to personalize your newsfeed and keep you seeing things you prefer. They identify objects in photos and use it to suggest similar photos that they believe you would like.

Even Uber and Lyft, two commonly used apps for ridesharing, food delivery, and transportation network, are prime examples of AI that students commonly use. They use ¨Machine Learning” to determine the price, wait time, and driver you will work with.

Math teacher Barbara Schremp believes that artificial intelligence can benefit educational settings, but should be used with caution. Humans have a point in technology where we have the ability to create life-changing devices, but whether we should or not is the question.

“We have a habit in technology of sometimes having the science and engineering get ahead of our legal and moral systems,” Schremp said. “With artificial intelligence, it’s kind of like the corollary I draw on that is what we’re doing in biology with creating clones and viruses. Our science and our ability to change the world is a little bit ahead of ‘should we be able to do it?’, ‘is it right to do it?’,” Schremp said.

Teachers have pondered strategies to teach students in customized ways that can individually benefit each student. Artificial intelligence is one step closer to creating that. However, it may become so credible that teachers may not serve any purpose. As a teacher who works with technology, she and her students often work on projects that relate to machine intelligence.

Education is a subject that will always undergo innovation to satisfy its efficiency, so it’s no question that students will see more and more of it impacting their lives.

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The Many Arms of AI