1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
According to wikipedia (2015), artificial intelligence (AI) is the
intelligence exhibited by machines or software. It is also the name of
the academic field of study in computer science which studies how to
create computers and computer software that are capable of intelligent
behavior. Major artificial intelligence researchers and other sources
define this field as the study and design of intelligent agents, in
which an intelligent agent is a system that perceives its environment
and takes actions that maximize its chances of success. John McCarthy,
who coined the term as far back as 1955, defines it as the science and
engineering of making intelligent machines.
Artificial intelligence is a branch of Computer
Science concerned with the study and creation of computer systems.
Artificial intelligence exhibits some form of intelligence by way of
introducing systems that learn new concepts and tasks and also have the
ability to reason and draw useful conclusions about the world.
Artificial intelligence systems also can understand a natural language
or perceive and comprehend a visual scene, and perform other types of
feats that require human types of intelligence (Freitas, 1999).
Artificial intelligence research is highly
technical and specialized, and is deeply divided into subfields that
often fail to communicate with each other. Some of the division is due
to social and cultural factors: subfields have grown up around
particular institutions and the work of individual researchers
(Drexler, 1986). Artificial intelligence research is also divided by
several technical issues. Some subfields focus on the solution of
specific problems. Others focus on one of several possible approaches
or on the use of a particular tool or towards the accomplishment of
particular applications. The central problems (or goals) of artificial
intelligence research include reasoning, knowledge, planning, learning,
natural language processing (communication), perception and the
ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence is still
among the field's long-term goals (Bostrom, 2002). Currently popular
approaches include statistical methods, computational intelligence and
traditional symbolic artificial intelligence. There are a large number
of tools used in artificial intelligence, including versions of search
and mathematical optimization, logic, methods based on probability and
economics, and many others. The artificial intelligence field is
interdisciplinary, in which a number of sciences and professions
converge, including computer science, mathematics, psychology,
linguistics, philosophy and neuroscience, as well as other specialized
fields such as artificial psychology (Hanson, 1998).
According to Moravec, (1999), the field was
founded on the claim that a central property of humans, intelligence
can be so precisely described that a machine can be made to simulate
it. This raises philosophical issues about the nature of the mind and
the ethics of creating artificial beings endowed with human-like
intelligence, issues which have been addressed by myth, fiction and
philosophy since antiquity (Kurzweil, 1999). Artificial intelligence
has been the subject of tremendous optimism but has also suffered
stunning setbacks. Today it has become an essential part of the
technology industry, providing the heavy lifting for many of the most
challenging problems in computer science (Yudkowsky, 2003).
Artificial intelligence also deals with study of
ideas to bring into being machines that respond to stimulation
consistent with traditional responses from humans, given the human
capacity for contemplation, judgment and intention (Vinge, 1993). Each
such machine should engage in critical appraisal and selection of
differing opinions within itself. Produced by human skill and labor,
these machines should conduct themselves in agreement with life, spirit
and sensitivity, though in reality, they are imitations. Other
researcher has seen artificial intelligence as systems that combine
sophisticated hardware and software with elaborate databases and
knowledge-based processing models to demonstrate characteristics of
effective human decision making. However, the researcher will provide
an indebt study into the introduction to artificial intelligence and
its application and benefit to human being
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
It is a known fact that the field of artificial intelligence is
relatively young (Yudkowsky, 2002). The creation of Artificial
Intelligence as an academic discipline can be traced to the 1950s, when
scientists and researchers began to consider the possibility of
machines processing intellectual capabilities similar to those of human
beings. Alan Turing, a British mathematician, first proposed a test to
determine whether or not a machine is intelligent. The test later
became known as the Turing Test, in which a machine tries to disguise
itself as a human being in an imitation game by giving human-like
responses to a series of questions. Turing believed that if a machine
could make a human being believe that he or she is communicating with
another human being, then the machine can be considered (Bostrom,
2002). However, artificial intelligence has been used in a wide range of
fields including medical diagnosis, stock trading, robot control, law,
remote sensing, scientific discovery and toys. However, many
Artificial intelligence applications are not perceived as artificial
intelligence (Bostrom, 2002). A lot of cutting edge artificial
intelligence has filtered into general applications, often without
being called artificial intelligence because once something becomes
useful enough and common enough it's not labeled artificial
intelligence anymore," Nick Bostrom reports. "Many thousands of
artificial intelligence applications are deeply embedded in the
infrastructure of every industry. In the late 90s and early 21st
century, Artificial intelligence technology became widely used as
elements of larger systems, but the field is rarely credited for these
successes. For example; finance, hospitals and medicines, heavy
industries, online and telephone customer service, transportation,
telecommunication, toys and games, music, aviation, news, publishing
& writing. However, this study seeks to provide an overview of
artificial intelligence, its application and use to human being in
general (Bostrom, 2002).
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
- To examine the historical development of artificial intelligence.
- To find out the application and benefits of artificial intelligence to mankind.
- To ascertain the prospects of artificial intelligence.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- How was artificial intelligence developed historically?
- What are the application and benefits of artificial intelligence to mankind?
- What are the prospects of artificial intelligence?
HO: Artificial intelligence does not benefit human life in any way
HA: Artificial intelligence does not benefit human life in any way
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
This research will be of significance in the following area:
- It will be of help to stakeholders in various sectors for
example health, finance, education, security, engineering,
manufacturing, research and technology in understanding the application
and benefits of Artificial intelligence to enhance productivity and
effectiveness of the sectors.
- The findings of this research work will also serve as
reference for academic endeavour to lecturers and students and also
help the public who would want to know about some advantages and
disadvantages (if any) of the use of the artificial intelligence.
- Findings and recommendations from this study will guide the
stakeholders in various sector determine the type artificial
intelligence to be adopted and also help them identify specific areas
where artificial intelligence can be applied.
1.7 SCOPE OF STUDY
This study on application and benefits of artificial intelligence
will cover the overview of the historical development of artificial
intelligence as a branch of computer science that deals with creating
computers and computer software that are capable of intelligent
behavior. However, this study will examine the application and benefits
of the Artificial intelligence to human life and this research will
also consider the future and prospects of artificial intelligence
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
In this research work, the terms defined reflect how the
researcher wants them to be understood in the context of this work
Behaviour- the way in which one acts or conducts oneself, especially towards others
Artificial- made or produced by human beings rather than occurring naturally, especially as a copy of something natural.
Computer- an electronic device which is capable of receiving
information (data) in a particular form and of performing a sequence of
operations in accordance with a predetermined but variable set of
procedural instructions (program) to produce a result in the form of
information or signals.
Intelligence - the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.
Innovation- The process of translating an idea or invention into a good or service that creates value
Bostrom, N. (2002). "Existential Risks: Analyzing Human Extinction Scenarios and Related Hazards." Journal of Evolution and Technology, 9. http://www.nickbostrom.com/existential/risks.html
Drexler, K. E. (1986): Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology. (Anchor Books: New York, 1986). http://www.foresight.org/EOC/index.html
Freitas Jr., R. A. (1999): Nanomedicine, Volume 1: Basic Capabilities. (Landes Bioscience: Georgetown, TX, 1999). http://www.nanomedicine.com
Hanson, R., et al. (1998). "A Critical Discussion of Vinge's Singularity Concept." Extropy Online. http://www.extropy.org/eo/articles/vi.html
Kurzweil, R. (1999): The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence. (Viking: New York, 1999).
Moravec, H. (1999): Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind. (Oxford University Press: New York, 1999).
Vinge, V. (1993). "The Coming Technological Singularity." Whole Earth Review, Winter issue.
Wikipedia, 2015: www.wikipedia.com
Yudkowsky, E. (2002). "The AI Box Experiment." Webpage. http://sysopmind.com/essays/aibox.html