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Artificial Intelligence In The Real World

A real look at the power of artificial intelligence which is making headway into some key industries and benefit humans.

Jun 04, 2024 | By Joe Lim

Wisdom comes from experience, or so we know. But with the advent of AI (Artificial Intelligence), humans don’t have to think and work so hard. The era of AI is getting the recognition it deserves. A recent Forbes report stated that the global AI software market will reach USD 22.6 billion by 2025.

So, what is AI? It’s “machine learning” — the ability of a computer program and a computer and robot to execute tasks commonly linked with intelligent beings. For a machine to reason, discover meaning, generalise or learn from past experiences.

The field of artificial intelligence started in 1956 when John McCarthy, an American computer scientist, organised a workshop on AI at the Dartmouth Summer Research Project. McCarthy is recognised as the father of AI.

Today, AI is not just a concept but a practical tool deployed in numerous industries. Its applications are diverse, from saving man-hours to enhancing critical thinking. Let’s delve into some of these industries harnessing AI’s power.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Satellite Collision System

AI aids in space research to help detect near-earth collisions of asteroids. Image: Inspired Pencil.

Space researchers have compiled a catalogue of over 27,000 asteroids in our solar system previously missed in telescopic photos. This remarkable feat is all thanks to a cutting-edge AI-powered program. The scientists behind this discovery assert that the tool simplifies the process of locating and tracking millions of asteroids, including those that could potentially pose a threat to Earth. The world would require years of advance notice before attempting to divert these potentially hazardous space rocks away from our planet.

Throughout the previous 200 years, astronomers have catalogued over 1.3 million of these rocky shards. Most newly discovered asteroids are located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. None of these “near-earth asteroids” are on a crash path with our planet.

A report in early May 2024 stated that the most recent research bounty was found in approximately five weeks and included over 150 space pebbles whose orbits put them within Earth’s orbit. Others are Trojans, orbiting around the sun along Jupiter’s path. The Minor Planet Center of the International Astronomical Union, the official organisation for asteroid discoveries, has yet to receive or approve observations of these asteroids.

Conventionally, astronomers look for new asteroids by repeatedly examining specific areas of our sky using telescope photos taken several times a night, typically every few hours. The background stars, planets, and galaxies are constant from image to image, but asteroids are identified as observable moving spots of light that are marked and confirmed. From there, these asteroids’ orbits are calculated and tracked.

AI is touted to be a game-changer in space science research, especially asteroid collisions. Image:

Artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a game-changer in space science. In recent years, it has revolutionised asteroid monitoring and management by leveraging its ability to analyse vast amounts of data and identify patterns. Traditional approaches, while effective, are hampered by the sheer volume of data and the need for continuous monitoring. However, AI overcomes these challenges by automating data analysis, accurately predicting asteroid trajectories, and providing real-time alerts for potential threats.

AI is now critically used to monitor and manage asteroids. This newfound technological ability allows humans to detect, track, and mitigate the risks these space rocks pose. AI’s usage in asteroid monitoring has become an integral and vital role in protecting our planet from potential cosmic impacts that might have serious repercussions. AI’s ability to process raw data into actionable insights through unique algorithms designed to tackle extensive datasets efficiently means humans don’t have to sift through heaps of information to identify potential asteroid impacts and their movements. Therefore, AI can help scientists pinpoint which objects or anomalies require closer monitoring. This technological ability can also enhance our understanding of such cosmic collisions and significantly sharpen our ability to predict trajectories and target potential risks. We have leap-frogged into AI-driven data processing and analysis to be more productive and proactive in our 24/7 asteroid monitoring.

Simon Gwozdz, founder and CEO of Equatorial Space. Image: Equatorial Space.

Simon Gwozdz, founder and CEO of Equatorial Space — a company developing non-explosive, low-cost and eco-friendly rocket systems for space launch applications, explains, “AI is promising for space applications because of the sheer amount of data our sector involves — from tracking and predicting potential collisions between the thousands of satellites to optimising stage sizing for launch vehicles — all iterative processes are ripe for streamlining using Machine Learning systems in the coming years.”

Spatial Design

AI can help with spatial renderings to give renderings mood, lighting and texture. Image: SketchUp.

SketchUp is no stranger to interior design (ID) or architecture. With the power of AI, SketchUp is now offering SketchUp Diffusion, where one can harness AI to create rendered images in the blink of an eye. Architects and IDs find it hard to communicate quickly with clients with their designs, as rendering takes up many man-hours. Therefore, SketchUp uses AI to create infinite design possibilities for innovative solutions.

SketchUp Diffusion liberates your creativity, starting with a simple text prompt and model. You can effortlessly generate photorealistic or stylised images that vividly express your unique ideas. The days of ‘design block’ are over, as you can now find inspiration by simply describing the image you’d like to see. With the AI slider, you can decide the influence of your prompts and the adherence of your model to the generated images, empowering you to bring your vision to life.

The ability of AI to provide furniture and lighting 3D models is helping many designers. Image: SketchUp.

Designers can also add to the context of lighting, finishes, and materiality to change the look and feel of the project. It also gives the end user the advantage of making better decisions with 3D modelling, rapid visualisation, idea generation, and collaboration tools.

Only once it’s furnished does a house become a home. With SketchUp 3D Warehouse, a trove of veritable iconic furniture and lighting pieces is accessible in a few clicks. This exhaustive repository offers free 3D models. The AI-driven search feature quickens your sourcing workflow; grab any image, drop it into the 3D warehouse search bar, and let the search engine work its magic. It even adds real-world textures and ready-to-use objects to your SketchUp project.

Healthcare With AI Robots and Nursing

Robots programmed with AI knowledge can do surgery. Image: Analytic Insight.

Don’t doubt the power of robots in healthcare. A Forbes report reveals that the healthcare industry will spend an estimated USD 40 billion on AI-assisted robotic surgery. Robots can direct a surgeon’s tool during surgery by analysing data from pre-op medical records, reducing a patient’s hospital stay by up to 21%. As “minimally invasive” surgery, robot-assisted procedures spare patients from the need to heal from big wounds. Robots can learn new surgical techniques using data from previous operations through artificial intelligence. The encouraging outcomes are encouraging. A study involving 379 orthopaedic patients found that an AI-assisted robotic treatment resulted in five times fewer problems than doctors working alone. For the first time, a robot-assisted in an eye operation. The Da Vinci, the most sophisticated surgical robot available, gives physicians more control over intricate treatments than they could with traditional methods. Heartlander, a tiny robot that makes a small incision in the chest to map and treat the surface of the heart, helps cardiac surgeons.

Virtual nurses might replace real nursing humans in the future through AI advancements. Image: Algantic.

Virtual nursing assistants might save the healthcare sector USD 20 billion annually by communicating with patients and guiding them to the best care environment. Virtual nurses may monitor patients, respond quickly to inquiries, and be available around the clock. To avoid hospital readmissions or needless hospital trips, most virtual nursing assistant applications available today enable more frequent communication between patients and care providers between office visits. The AI and voice-activated virtual nurse assistant from Care Angel can even do wellness checks.

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