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How to ensure you do not get left behind in the AI age

Technology developments are shaping future skillsets. Source: Shutterstock.com

Artificial intelligence (AI) has become a buzzphrase in education and economics over the past year. But what actually is it? And how can students stay ahead of the trend?

Until very recently, discussions surrounding AI were reserved for science-fiction films that saw the fall of humankind in an epic battle with ‘the machines’.

But we are now seeing artificial intelligence cropping up in tech circles to explain everything from Facebook’s face-recognition feature to identifying suicidal tendencies from brain scans.

The sci-fi fantasies of a robot revolution are undoubtedly upon us. And as Star Wars renegade, C-3PO, famously said:

But, fear not. The dawn of AI is looking a lot less like a robot uprising and a lot more like humans creating clever machines that interpret data – which means you can be a part of the movement.

In the same way we use our experiences to inform our decisions, AI simulates human learning through using data as their experiences and algorithms to determine their decision – a process known as ‘deep learning’. These algorithms then translate into actions which can make our lives a whole lot easier.  

But on the brink of the digital dawn, the focus is shifting from fear of robots taking over the world to the fear of robots taking our jobs. Will the future look something like this?

So, how can you ensure you are not left behind in the race to the future?

In an industry that is growing independent of human action, it can be challenging to know what skills will remain relevant for long. How can you plan for your future when the future itself is so uncertain?

Fortunately, technology powerhouse NVIDIA created the Deep Learning Institute to educate the brightest tech minds on the application of artificial intelligence.

“The world faces an acute shortage of data scientists and developers who are proficient in deep
learning, and we’re focused on addressing that need,” said Greg Estes, vice president of
Developer Programs at NVIDIA.

“As part of the company’s effort to democratize AI, the Deep Learning Institute is enabling more developers, researchers and data scientists to apply this powerful technology to solve difficult problems.”

NVIDIA recognizes the potential of artificial intelligence and understands the importance of investing into AI education to create the next generation of innovators in the field. There are a range of online courses that focus on how this technology can be interpreted and directed.

And as the market for AI increases, so too does the market for AI education.

An expansion of NVIDIA’s Deep Learning Institute will include “new partnerships with [the consulting firm] Booz Allen Hamilton, and deeplearning.ai to train thousands of students, developers and government specialists in AI.

NVIDIA explained how its “new university ambassador program enables instructors worldwide to teach students critical job skills and practical applications of AI at no cost”, while it will offer “new courses designed to teach domain-specific applications of deep learning for finance, natural language processing, robotics, video analytics and self-driving cars”.

Educating yourself in AI is possibly the smartest thing you can do for the future. As, while no one knows exactly what the future itself holds, it is almost guaranteed to be revolutionized by AI.

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