The buzz surrounding Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning has grown from a soft swell to a set of technological offerings already on the market. Today, 80 percent of enterprise businesses already have an investment in this growing market, and 30 percent are already planning to expand that investment over the next three years. Increased availability of compute power and the addition of large, existing databases of training data have turned machine learning into a more affordable technology that can demonstrate a rapid return on investment.
The predicted impact of AI over the next decade is so large, most experts simply expect it to be an integrated and ubiquitous part of daily life. For many people, it already is in small and unnoticed ways. Facebook's facial recognition makes tagging photos quick and easy. Automated scheduling bots move information from emails to calendars. Hundreds of companies use chatbots as their first line of contact with current and potential customers. But, predictions put AI into virtually every activity by the year 2025. Here are a few of the hard predictions surrounding the industry:
That represents just a fraction of the total predicted growth in the AI market. Some products predicted to make it through the hype cycle in that time include:
Autonomous driving is expected to add to the list within the next twenty years and brings with it the potential for massive change. Each of these technologies can disrupt existing markets and bring AI into the fabric of daily life for businesses and consumers.
As the demand for AI increases, so does the demand for more and more computational power. Cloud computing is one example where a distributed network provides services to many, but the cost and hardware are still centralized, creating expensive infrastructure and leaving top-level technologies in the hands of the most wealthy individuals and companies.
Truly distributed networking, like platforms enabled by blockchain, work with millions of individually owned machines, distributing tasks and data across that same network. While cryptocurrency has been the most visible use of blockchain applications, that is changing. Smart contracts and new platforms find ways of linking providers with users, without the need for a third-party intervention.
Current predictions of computer usage versus availability for businesses show that today's infrastructure could reach a critical failure during that same decade. Simply put, availability of computer resources is not growing fast enough to meet demand. In addition, the ecological costs of those resources may make them unsustainable in the long term. Data centers are already working to reduce both power and water usage, but the adoption of IoT and AI technologies is making gains in both of those areas too slow to handle the rate of growth. That's where distributed networking may offer a concrete solution.
By allowing individuals to monetize their computer resources during off-use times, businesses can continue to find needed resources at a fraction of the cost. Blockchain technology is the foundation that makes this possible. Instead of mining tokens, users allocate system time and collect payment for used resources. Businesses get the needed computational power without the overhead of management and specific capital investments in hardware. Consumers get to turn an existing resource into a revenue stream that can help cover the cost of maintenance and upgrades. With enough adoption of tokenized system resource allocation, the failure of infrastructure may not be the problem that it first appears.