A Simple Tool to Start Making Decisions with the Help of AI

Harvard Business Review

There is no shortage of hot takes regarding the significant impact that artificial intelligence (AI) is going to have on business in the near future. Much less has been written about how, exactly, companies should get started with it. In our research and in our book, we begin by distilling AI down to its very simplest economics, and we offer one approach to taking that first step.

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When looking at artificial intelligence from the perspective of economics, we ask the same, single question that we ask with any technology: What does it reduce the cost of?

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The Economics of Artificial Intelligence

McKinsey Quarterly


Earlier this month, Google unveiled remarkable new capabilities for its automated assistant. They’re based on Google’s growing expertise in artificial intelligence (AI).

Perhaps the most dramatic, and, to look at the deluge of commentary, troubling, demonstration was the ability of Google AI to make phone calls that imitate a human.

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Google’s AI Assistant Is a Reminder that Privacy and Security Are Not the Same

Harvard Business Review


Just because you "work with people" doesn't mean your job won't change with AI

Quartz

Human Resource (HR) managers often view their job as dealing with people. They believe that in order to do it well, they must know people, read emotional cues, and respond with empathy. Therefore, they conclude, should artificial intelligence (AI) put jobs at risk, they’ll be the ones delivering bad news, not receiving it.

Well, I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but HR jobs are actually quite likely to be impacted by artificial intelligence.

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If someone were to provide you with an oracle to tell you the future, where would you use it first? A common answer is to predict moves in the stock market.

The new revolution in artificial intelligence promises to hand everyone an oracle, whether for investing or another decision.

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AI will change stock-market trading, but it can’t wipe out the human touch

Market Watch


For the last few years the talk has been on Big Data. The world has taken a step forward again – and now the buzz is on AI – artificial intelligence. The very phrase conjures images of Hollywood Robocops, Hals and Hers. But what is the reality?

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Artificial Intelligence for Beginners

IEDP Viewpoint


Companies are suddenly declaring themselves "AI first." Why it’s a problem for their current customers

LinkedIn Pulse

In March 2017, in a keynote speech at its annual I/O event, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced that the company was shifting from a “mobile-first world to an AI-first world.” Then a series of announcements followed involving AI in various ways: from the development of specialized chips for optimizing machine learning, to the use of deep learning in new applications including cancer research, to putting Google’s AI-driven assistant on as many devices as possible. Pichai claimed the company was transitioning from “searching and organizing the world’s information to AI and machine learning.”

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To answer this question, consider this thought experiment. Most people are familiar with shopping at Amazon. As with most online retailers, you visit its website, shop for items, place them in your cart, pay for them – and then Amazon ships them to you. Right now, Amazon’s business model is “shopping then shipping.”

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Artificial Intelligence is Here. Is it time to rethink your business strategy?

UofT Magazine


Make Sure AI is Right for Your Business before taking the plunge

The Globe and Mail

“AI is the next big thing,” your boss tells you. “Go out and get me some of that AI.” What do you do? Is AI something you can just go out and purchase? Is it like a robot you can buy and then just plug in and put it to work? To read the popular press on the coming AI revolution and the opportunity or threat that AI is coming for jobs, you could be forgiven for having that notion.  But that is far from the reality of artificial intelligence today. Instead, as with many technologies, AI does one thing really well. You need to understand what that is and where it fits in before you can “get some AI.”

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Toward a National Policy on AI

Policy Options

Advances in AI technology will improve our capacity for prediction and help to develop an AI policy toward deciding on the many trade-offs we want to take as a society.

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Navigating the AI Maze is a challenge for governments

The Conversation

New developments in artificial intelligence are proceeding apace. As an economist who has researched the AI revolution, I see 2018 as similar to 1995 when the commercial internet was born. The technology is advancing rapidly, but most businesses are only just starting to figure out how to put it to work.

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Artificial intelligence in the Boardroom

The Corporate Board

In January 2007, when Steve Jobs paced the stage and introduced the world to the iPhone, not a single observer reacted with, “Well, it’s curtains for the taxi industry.” Yet fast forward to 2018 and that appears to be precisely the case.

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Is your company's data actually valuable in the AI Era?

Harvard Business Review

AI is coming. That is what we heard throughout 2017 and will likely continue to hear throughout this year. For established businesses that are not Google or Facebook, a natural question to ask is: What have we got that is going to allow us to survive this transition?

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The Simple Economics of Machine Intelligence

Harvard Business Review

The year 1995 was heralded as the beginning of the “New Economy.” Digital communication was set to upend markets and change everything. But economists by and large didn’t buy into the hype. It wasn’t that we didn’t recognize that something changed. It was that we recognized that the old economics lens remained useful for looking at the changes taking place.  ...

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How AI will change strategy: a thought experiment

Harvard Business Review

How will AI change strategy? That’s the single most common question the three of us are asked from corporate executives, and it’s not trivial to answer. AI is fundamentally a prediction technology. As advances in AI make prediction cheaper, economic theory dictates that we’ll use prediction more frequently and widely, and the value of complements to prediction – like human judgment – will rise. But what does all this mean for strategy? ...

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It doesn’t take a tremendous amount of training to begin a job as a cashier at McDonald’s. Even on their first day, most new cashiers are good enough. And they improve as they serve more customers. Although a new cashier may be slower and make more mistakes than their experienced peers, society generally accepts that they will learn from experience. ...

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The trade-off every AI company will face

Harvard Business Review


How AI will change the way we make decisions

Harvard Business Review

With the recent explosion in AI, there has been the understandable concern about its potential impact on human work. Plenty of people have tried to predict which industries and jobs will be most affected, and which skills will be most in demand. (Should you learn to code? Or will AI replace coders too?)

Rather than trying to predict specifics, we suggest an alternative approach. Economic theory suggests that AI will substantially raise the value of human judgment. People who display good judgment will become more valuable, not less. But to understand what good judgment entails and why it will become more valuable, we have to be precise about what we mean. ...

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What to expect from Artificial Intelligence

Sloan Management Review

To understand how advances in artificial intelligence are likely to change the workplace — and the work of managers — you need to know where AI delivers the most value. ...

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On October 12, 2016, President Obama’s Executive Office published two reports that laid out its plans for the future of artificial intelligence (AI). The reports received less media attention than they might have otherwise because the United States was gripped by the final weeks of a presidential campaign race. But depending on one’s view of AI’s potential impact, the work described by these reports may be more influential on the long arc of history than the outcome of that election. Combined, the two reports include eighty-eight pages and twenty-five recommendations. Here are the highlights.

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The US AI Policy Roadmap

Harvard Business Review