Researcher calls for Aurora artificial intelligence plan

Researcher calls for Aurora artificial intelligence plan

This Christmas, one can put a little artificial intelligence on the gift list.

For about $700, one can buy a unit small enough to wear like a pin that can record video, talk to you, and even perform real-time language translation.

Jim Schweitzer described it as “Siri on steroids,” invoking Apple Inc.’s ancillary branding.

“It’s not something out of science fiction,” he said.

Schweitzer, the principal AI researcher at Aurora-based Global Data Sciences Inc., used this information to show that artificial intelligence, or artificial intelligence, is not something that is far off in the future. It’s already here.

“A lot of people are afraid of him,” he said. “But whether we like it or not, it’s here, and we’re going to have to deal with it.”

To that end, Schweitzer recently held an AI Summit at the Aurora Public Library, which was designed to introduce people to AI and spark a conversation about its practical application in Aurora.

The former member of the Aurora Conservation Commission is active with several local non-profit organizations, and is currently working on visualizing artificial intelligence and interactive tools for his company.

Global Data Sciences Inc. provides Scientific, data-focused approaches to developing and implementing strategies for companies.

As part of the event, he called on the city of Aurora to develop an AI action plan, similar to what New York City unveiled in October. As far as Schweitzer and anyone else can tell, New York is the only city with such a plan so far, though it’s impossible to say how many might be in the works.

“The city of Aurora needs an action plan, and the citizens need to get input,” Schweitzer said. “If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you get there?”

New York’s plan, prepared by the city’s Office of Technology and Innovation. It involved about 50 city employees from 18 agencies, as well as industry, academia and civil society visionaries, according to the plan itself.

The plan calls for seven broad initiatives, including calling for a governance framework, such as an AI Steering Committee; establishing principles and guidelines; Continue monitoring artificial intelligence tools; Existence of an external advisory network; exchanging information with other governments; Promote public participation; Building AI knowledge and skills in city government; And submit annual reports on the progress made by the city.

Broadly defined, artificial intelligence describes a wide range of technologies that use data to make predictions, inferences, recommendations, classifications or other decisions, according to the New York plan.

“While AI technologies have recently captured the public’s imagination by producing on-demand images and text, the reality is that they have been around for decades in a variety of forms and uses,” the plan adds.

These technologies include tools that filter spam from email, support medical care, and improve energy use in homes and workplaces.

“We tend to think of artificial intelligence as a thing, but it’s not,” Schweitzer said. “It’s just a mathematical way of writing things. There are a lot of different types.”

Schweitzer noted that many AI misuses or flaws are real, which is why verification and verification are essential with any AI product.

AI tools can be useful in organizing and summarizing the vast number of data sets currently in use and accumulating daily. This could help a city, for example, satisfy Freedom of Information requests for information that are now difficult to do.

“AI is the hammer,” Schweitzer said. “I could get that hammer and smash the window. Or I could build something with it.”

Schweitzer said he hopes to hold another AI summit in January.

slord@tribpub.com

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