What is AI, Artificial intelligence?

30 Apr 2020
Artificial intelligence. What is AI? What is the impact of artificial intelligence on business? The impact is significant when it comes to productivity, as it optimises use of time, safety and accuracy.

AI every day

AI is now part of our day-to-day lives. In the morning, we sit at the breakfast table, drink a cup of coffee and ask Siri or Alexa to tell us the news for the day or put on a morning playlist. The thermostat in your home can tell what the weather is like outside, while your robotic lawnmower monitors your garden at night and knows exactly where to cut the grass during the day. This is all powered by AI.

AI grasmaaier

Artificial intelligence

The term ‘artificial intelligence’ is an overarching term for various methods of rendering intelligent a device, application software suite and so on.  If you manage to make a device do what you want it to do without having to explicitly assign it the task, this is an example of artificial intelligence.

There are various terms that are frequently mentioned in the same conversation. Examples include ‘machine learning’ and ‘deep learning’.

Machine learning

Machine learning uses algorithms to collect data so it can learn and make predictions based on this. This type of artificial intelligence does not give the machine any instructions. Instead, the machine learns to perform tasks based on the amount of data it has and the algorithms it uses. There are many ways for businesses to take advantage of machine learning: facial/object recognition, pattern/emotion detection, product advice, voice-to-text conversion, natural language interpreting, data structuring and more.

Nine examples of artificial intelligence: machine learning

Amazon machine learning
Amazon Machine Learning

Deep learning

This type of artificial intelligence goes a step further. It is more complex and is based on a neural network – the human brain is a good example of one. There are many hidden layers between the input and the output, meaning the raw data is easy to process and structure. It can also recognise patterns that the human brain is unable to detect.

An example: AlphaGo trained itself to become an unbeatable Go master (against human opponents) in just three days.

AI in your business

It is clear that artificial intelligence will have a major influence on productivity in industries and companies and on production processes.

Use of time

AI can optimise how employees use their time by analysing their situation and offering tips. AI can take on tasks so that machines do not require downtime and to reduce the amount of errors. Employees can focus more on work that is of greater benefit to the company instead of having to perform repetitive manual tasks.


Tasks in difficult-to-reach areas that are hazardous to human health can be performed by machines instead.


As AI can process huge amounts of data in much less time than people, it enables analyses to be performed and justified decisions to be made without the fear of failure, doubt or influencing factors entering the picture.

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Maxime van Belle Content Marketeer