|Photo: Christina Cardoza|
However, with all the recent advancements to democratize artificial intelligence and use it for good, almost every company started to turn to this technology and technique in 2016.
The year started with Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg announcing his plan to build an artificially intelligent assistant to do everything from adjusting the temperature in his house to checking up on his baby girl. He worked throughout the year to bring his plan to life, with an update in August that stated he was almost ready to show off his AI to the world.
In November, Facebook announced it was beginning to focus on giving computers the ability to think, learn, plan and reason like humans. In order to change the negative stigma people associate with AI, the company ended its year with the release of AI educational videos designed to make the technology easier to understand.
Microsoft followed Facebook’s pursuit of artificial intelligence, but instead of building its own personal assistant, the company made strides to democratize AI. In January, the company released its deep learning solution, Computational Network Toolkit (CNTK), on GitHub. Recently, Microsoft announced an update to CNTK with new Python and C++ programming language functionalities, as well as reinforcement learning algorithm capabilities. In July, Microsoft also open-sourced its Minecraft AI testing platform to provide developers with a test bed for their AI research.