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10 Ways Artificial Intelligence is Already Impacting Your Life

It was not long ago that artificial intelligence (AI) was purely the stuff of science fiction. The entertainment industry has profited greatly from our natural tendency to trust new AI tech, with popular movies like War Games and the Terminator series painting a bleak, dystopian vision of the future. A future where omnipresent robots run wild and human beings are both expendable and subject to the will of sinister machines. However, many artificial intelligence advancements have already been integrated seamlessly into our modern day-to-day existence. From nanobots assisting with medical procedures to complex traffic management, AI developers are devoted to using increasingly ubiquitous technology to improve quality of life.

Despite Hollywood’s persistent attempts to convince us otherwise, our world is not overwhelmed by malevolent runaway machines and dangerous robots. Yet functional artificial intelligence is everywhere you look. Here are 10 ways in which AI is already impacting your life:

1. Social media monitoring. It would be impossible for humans to police the huge volume of user-posted videos and other content hosted by social media sites every single day, but AI is filling the gaps. From flagging and deleting copy-protected songs to shutting down depictions of violence, artificial intelligence is helping sites like Twitter and Facebook improve their services.

2. Factory automation. Manufacturing jobs are changing, largely thanks to automation and the use of artificial intelligence. For good or ill, AI is changing the way people work and is creating demand for new skills.

3. Hiring and resume screening. Artificial intelligence is changing the way people work, but it is also helping decide who gets hired and what roles they filled. A number of large employers are already experimenting with artificially intelligent resume screeners and hiring tools, and that could have a profound impact on the worldwide workforce.

4. Driver assist technology. If your car has ever stopped itself or reminded you to stay in your lane, you can thank artificial intelligence. AI has enabled an entire generation of driver assist technology, making travel safer, and giving motorists a new level of confidence behind the wheel. At the rate in which companies are investing in automotive AI, truly autonomous vehicles are not far behind.

5. Ride-sharing apps. Even if you do not own a car, artificial intelligence is likely still impacting the way you get around. Ride-sharing apps like Uber and Lyft make extensive use of artificial intelligence to predict routes, keep track of drivers, and ensure positive experiences for their passengers.

6. Virtual assistants. Artificial intelligence is behind smartphone apps like Apple’s Siri and smart speakers like Amazon’s Alexa. Whether you are checking the weather, catching up on the news of the day, or listening to the latest audiobooks, these AI-enabled apps and devices are making it easier than ever before.

7. Call center automation. Whether you love it or hate it, you have AI to thank for those automated call center menus. From routing calls to the use of speech recognition, artificial intelligence is making it possible.

8. Smarter search engines. Artificial intelligence is helping search engine algorithms get smarter, so you get the relevant results you need and find the useful information you are looking for. Search engine giants like Google are more than just tech companies. They are developing more and more keen ways to exploit artificial intelligence to better serve consumers.

9. Purchase recommendations. If you have ever shopped online, you may have seen a list of recommendations based on your past purchases. Chances are, it was AI and not humans making those recommendations. Amazon and other huge retail sites routinely employ AI algorithms to connect would-be buyers with the most desirable products.

10. GPS technology. The next time you get in your car, you can thank AI for making your trip faster and more pleasant. From routing you around an unexpected traffic jam to predicting the duration of your trip, the AI built into popular GPS models is helping drivers at every turn.

So, what does the increasingly automated future hold? Could AI be an existential danger, or will the predicted rise of the machines evolve to enhance our lives in positive ways? As with so much in life, the answer is probably somewhere in the middle. But what is certain is that artificial intelligence is already here, and is here to stay. Just ask Alexa.