Artificial Intelligence (AI) has seen a significant surge around the 2020s, with notable innovations such as Dall-e, Midjourney, and particularly ChatGPT. For organizations, AI tools serve as crucial drivers of performance and competitiveness. Across IT departments, financial divisions, HR, customer services, as well as marketing and communication departments, the transformation is already underway.
Would you like to leverage the opportunities presented by AI too? In this article, Mozzaik provides you with the keys to understand the ins and outs of artificial intelligence and prepare your structure to embrace this change under the best conditions. Enjoy your reading!
Artificial Intelligence: Definition and History
Artificial intelligence is a concept more than 70 years old. Presentation.
What is Artificial Intelligence? Definition.
The concept of artificial intelligence, or AI, refers to various tools that utilize calculation algorithms to imitate or simulate human intelligence. In other words, AI is a computer program that leverages data to automatically perform tasks such as solving an equation, creating an illustration, or writing text.
Brief History of Artificial Intelligence
The idea of artificial intelligence emerged in the 1950s when British mathematician Alan Turing explored the capacity of machines to replicate human intelligence. Turing devised a test, the "Turing test," to measure an AI's ability to simulate human intelligence during a conversation. The term "artificial intelligence" is attributed to American mathematician and computer scientist John McCarthy in 1955. Throughout the latter half of the 20th century, AI research projects continued with varying success. In 1997, IBM's Deep Blue computer, specialized in chess, notably defeated world champion Garry Kasparov, marking a significant milestone.
The 2010s witnessed major developments in AI with the rise of Machine Learning and Deep Learning based on artificial neural networks. AI also entered daily life with speech recognition, personalized search engines, autonomous vehicles, automatic translation, and Deepfakes (videos altered using AI).
The 2020s mark a turning point in the history of artificial intelligence. The general public gains access to technology through tools like generative image AIs Dall-e, Stable Diffusion, and Midjourney. Particularly, at the end of 2022, the American company OpenAI introduced a conversational agent based on AI: ChatGPT. In just two months, this chatbot reached 100 million active monthly users, making it the fastest-growing application in history. Professionals and individuals now use ChatGPT to find answers to their questions, brainstorm, summarize texts, translate documents, or even write product descriptions, letters, or social media posts.
Following ChatGPT, generative AI tools proliferate with diverse use cases: writing assistance, visual content creation, photo and video editing, chatbot creation, presentation generation, music and voiceover generation, and more.
Various Types of Artificial Intelligence
Researchers identify two main types or stages of AI:
1. Narrow Artificial Intelligence (ANI): Also known as "Weak AI," ANI is trained to perform specific tasks but lacks reasoning or self-awareness. Most current AIs, including ChatGPT, Apple's virtual assistant Siri, Google's search engine, and business function optimization software, fall under ANI.
2. Strong Artificial Intelligence (Strong AI): Strong AI encompasses two categories that do not yet exist: Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and Artificial Superintelligence (ASI). AGI would possess intelligence and consciousness equivalent to a human, while ASI represents the ultimate stage where AI surpasses human intelligence. AGI and especially ASI are current concerns for AI researchers, NGOs, and governments calling for preventive regulation.
Business Opportunities and Challenges Associated with Artificial Intelligence
New tools based on artificial intelligence have the potential to bring numerous benefits to businesses. However, this technology also comes with risks that need to be anticipated.
Business Opportunities Offered by Artificial Intelligence
According to KPMG's Global Technology Report 2023, artificial intelligence is "the most important technology to help businesses achieve their goals in the coming years." Here's why:
- Productivity Enhancement: Artificial intelligence serves as a lever to increase productivity by automating repetitive tasks. It helps employees execute their core tasks more efficiently, such as risk management, predictive analysis, and marketing campaign design. Additionally, it enables decision-makers to make more informed decisions.
- Improved Employee Experience: AI is a vector for enhancing the employee experience. Employees are relieved of their most tedious tasks, easily carry out complex activities, save time when searching for knowledge, receive quickly clear and personalized information about HR processes, and access training tailored to their individual needs.
- Valuable Ally for Customer Knowledge: AI is a valuable ally for optimizing customer knowledge, providing a better customer experience, increasing consumer satisfaction, and building customer loyalty. Customer expectations regarding products, services, or marketing actions are better understood by teams, allowing them to refine offerings and communication. Thanks to customer relationship Chatbots and Voicebots, buyers can also benefit from rapid and personalized customer service without overburdening sales teams.
Challenges Related to the Adoption of Artificial Intelligence in Business
While artificial intelligence enhances operational efficiency and overall organizational performance, it is not without risks. There are significant challenges associated with AI adoption:
- Bias and Ethical Issues: AIs can reproduce or exacerbate biases, make mistakes, or raise ethical issues, especially when the algorithm is based on a skewed basic assumption, incorrect criteria, or trained on a non-representative database. Amazon, for example, experienced biased AI with its discriminatory recruitment software (now discontinued).
- Opaque Functioning: The opaque functioning of AIs, as highlighted by Deloitte consulting, puts companies in a position of dependence on third parties. This lack of transparency also raises questions about the protection of confidential data, trade secrets, personal data of employees and customers, and copyright.
- Impact on Employment: The adoption of AI tools by organizations is expected to disrupt human aspects. According to investment bank Goldman Sachs, up to 300 million jobs worldwide are expected to be automated. Europe and the United States are particularly affected, with two-thirds of jobs exposed to automation in these regions. Conversely, as emphasized by Deloitte again, companies will need to train or hire employees to acquire (still scarce) skills related to the implementation, testing, and management of AI tools.
How to Prepare for the Arrival of AI in Business?
To fully leverage artificial intelligence, reduce associated risks, and make it a true competitive advantage, organizations must prepare for the arrival of the technology within their structure. In this regard, two paths must be explored:
Training Employees in Artificial Intelligence
The arrival of artificial intelligence in businesses will transform working methods, disrupt the job market, and raise security and recruitment issues. To facilitate change and guard against risks associated with AI adoption, it is essential to train your teams in using the technology and raise awareness of the opportunities and risks associated with it (confidential data protection, algorithmic biases, legal risks, etc.).
According to an Ifop-Talan survey published in May 2023, "68% of French people who use generative AIs in the workplace hide it from their hierarchical superior." To avoid such abuses, it is necessary to establish a policy on the use of AI and the protection of sensitive data, even if you have not yet adopted this technology. The need is real, as the same source indicates, "72% of French people feel they do not have sufficient knowledge to use generative AIs."
Structuring Company Data
To deploy an AI project, it is possible to use external and/or internal data, i.e., information produced and stored by the company (customer lists, contracts, sales reporting, etc.). For these data to be exploitable by artificial intelligence, they must undergo preliminary processing.
In summary, to make raw data exploitable by AI, several operations must be performed:
- Data Cleaning: Removing or correcting false or incomplete data to obtain a reliable (representative) database for training artificial intelligence.
- Data Structuring: Organizing data according to a specific format suitable for the type of data and algorithmic constraints to allow AI to process them more easily.
- Data Annotation: Marking or labeling data using metadata to enable machine learning algorithms to understand and process them effectively.