Computer systems that can mimic human intelligence aren’t far from reality. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will take an entirely new direction in the way we use technology.
We might not be fully aware, but AI is practically being used today, one way or the other in modern computer systems. Its application today might not be so advanced as what you see in Sci-Fi series such as HBO’s Westworld. AI advancement of this nature can allow for humanoid robots which are capable of passing the Turing test.
In Nigeria today, AI is still finding its grounds. Although there are some organisations that are endeavouring to catch the pace, they usually end up being stalled due to lack of support or proper funding.
Major technological companies have been investing in AI. This is due to the fact AI represents the next frontier of technology, and without it, it would be as difficult to withstand competition and scale through the market.
Here are some (potential) applications of AI in Nigeria:
Digital Personal Assistant
A digital personal assistant can be integrated into an Operating System (OS). If enabled, voice queries can be detected and a response, pending on what is asked, can be sourced online or retrieved from local storage.
Here are some tasks a personal digital assistant can do for you:
- Answer questions by searching online.
- Make recommendations.
- Give directions.
- Add events to calendar.
- Send text messages, e-mails and notifications.
- Language translation.
In Nigeria, when people are faced with planning and organisation issues, a digital personal assistant will come in handy. It can help organise meetings, initiate voice friendly notifications and tips.
Voice Interaction can enable easy interaction so you don’t have to always tap your phone to initiate a task request. All you need do is speak to it, and it acknowledges your voice then performs the task.
When privacy is demanded, a password can be set so that anyone does not access your data to perform unauthorized tasks. Advancements in the technology would permit more features peculiar to a real life personal assistant.
An autonomous vehicle is essentially a self-driving car, engineered to move with little or no human effort. The vehicle, to an extent, can be able to operate itself without the need for a driver.
AI technology found in an autonomous car gives it the ability to sense its surroundings and make intelligent decisions as to where to move, when to stop, and what to do in case of an emergency.
Self-driving cars will solve a lot of transportation problems in Nigeria. Accidents on the highway will be reduced as these cars are able to adjust to the required speed and keep up with the changing surroundings. GPS technology, being integrated to the cars will allow them to take the best and safe routes.
Connected vehicle technology will allow cars to communicate, thereby limiting collisions. Although for this to take place, the cars must be on a Network such as 5G. The inherent danger in this is Car hacking, whereby the car is being manipulated by someone elsewhere.
There is a catch to self-driving cars in Nigeria.
The connectivity of self-driving cars can be manipulated by criminals to create gridlocks and accidents. Even if Nigeria was to implement connected cars, it will be reserved for the wealthy or those that can subscribe to 5G data plans to have their cars connected.
AI can virtually replace classroom learning and provide the exact similar experience. Students at home, including teachers can all be connected through virtual reality. The software running the simulation can set a classroom and depict the character of the students and teachers as they so desire.
With the application of AI, the technology can learn from experience, adjust to new inputs, and perform human-like tasks. AI can allow the system to understand the student’s learning profile, thereby personalising a suitable lesson plan to ensure the student learns effectively.
The major issues that might hinder effective e-education in Nigeria are connectivity – some locations don’t have good internet connection, power shortage – insufficient electric supply.
Treatment, prevention and diagnosis of health conditions can be effectively achieved with the application of AI technology in Nigeria.
Machine learning, through the use of statistical techniques, allows computer systems the ability to learn with data received, thereby making decisions with little to no human intervention.
In Nigeria, with information from AI, Doctors are able to assess risks, make better decisions, and give patients more effective medications.
Complex medical procedures such as kidney transplant, heart transplant which most Nigerians would otherwise prefer to fly abroad for, can be rest assured with the application of AI in Nigeria.
The application of AI in Nigeria can mitigate terrorism and unrest. The mode of operation can be analysed by AI, and then simulations can be run to find out which pattern is feasible as deterrent.
Soldiers or combatants can train in a simulated AI generated environment. In battlefield, they can utilise their human intelligence against the AI, based on data received by the system. This means, the more Data the system has, the better the chances in the fight against terrorism/unrest.