It might be considered a platitude, but people are always looking for new ways to break away from the monotonous beat of everyday normalcy – either temporarily or permanently. According to a 2013 report on drug abuse by the United States government, 9.4 percent (around 24.6 million people) of individuals age 12 or old noted that they had recreationally used a drug within the past month. This tendency to seek life-changing experiences is true whether it concerns things like the countercultural movements of the 1970s – which infamously involved controversial music and use of illicit drugs – or the technological experiences today.
Most people are fascinated with those experiences that allow them to escape crushing boredom and constancy of regular life. That’s why the prospect of virtual realities and the possibilities of automation afforded by artificial intelligence are so exciting. Here are some of the biggest changes related to these two fields that are quickly arriving with the technological advents of modern society.
A brief history of AI
In order to understand the importance of the changes that are currently taking place in the field of AI, a brief description of historical approaches to the problem of replicating intelligence is helpful. Let’s illustrate these approaches by taking a look at how chess engines function. With regard to chess engines, the goal is clearly defined and the problem is how can we code a machine to make accurate decisions that will lead to a winning outcome despite the difficulty of running large sequence searches through possible move sequences.
In the past, engineers solved this issue through cruder methods that involved the use of decision trees and using certain mathematical methods to guide the chess engine’s choice and calculation of the best possible move sequences. The issue with this method – and the challenge that impacts most AI development efforts – is that there needs to be significant amounts of training material in order for the engine to develop sufficient resolution and accuracy in making its choices.
Another limitation that is implicit in these older methods in artificial intelligence is that the methods themselves are static – there is no way for the methods to refine themselves without the help of human ingenuity. The concept of machine learning is part of the set of revolutionary methods in artificial intelligence that is addressing this limitation and attempting to surpass it.
The intersection between artificial intelligence and virtual reality
So, where does virtual reality come into all of this? Well, to start off virtual reality is similar to artificial intelligence in the sense that the field is still in its development stages. However, virtual reality is in an even earlier stage of nascency.
With the introduction of the popular Oculus Rift to the market,…
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