Artificial intelligence: driving force of the digital revolution

Learning algorithms are currently changing entire industries - above all the financial, medical and automotive sectors. Like humans, cognitive systems can learn from experience. They improve the risk management of banks, revolutionize the treatment of patients and control energy networks as well as vehicles. The interplay of artificial intelligence, data analytics and cybersecurity creates cross-industry platforms, that connect people, machines, production processes and services to the infrastructure via the Internet.

Hardly any other buzzword from the IT universe is currently as hotly discussed as “Artificial Intelligence" (AI). The term originates from a 1956 project proposal by the computer scientist John McCarthy, with which he asked the Rockefeller Foundation for financial support for a scientific conference. But until the turn of the millennium, the vision of machines that think for themselves failed because of the limited technical possibilities: Computers still computed too slowly and storage space was expensive. The revolution could only begin as the processors became faster and faster, and the associated data more digital: Human beings overcome cognitive boundaries with machines, and machines simulate human thought processes.

But groundbreaking technologies also need adequate rules. In view of the enormous speed with which artificial intelligence is conquering everyday business life, the supervisory authorities in Germany and the European Union are finding it difficult to determine the necessary specifications. Added to this is the concern of many citizens that the conquest of algorithm-based intelligence will lead to the loss of countless jobs. The new AI age also presents companies with challenges, but also opens up great opportunities for them: Innovative data analytics concepts provide the ability to optimize processes in real time, predict the behavior of key customers, and identify business risks before losses occur. An international study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers concluded that one in ten banking CEOs is convinced that artificial intelligence will change the business of the financial sector over the next five years. Nearly 60 percent even expect AI to change the world more than the Internet.*

What is behind trend concepts such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning, data mining or predictive analytics?

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* PricewaterhouseCoopers: 22. CEO Survey – Banking and Capital Market Trends 2019”,