I use cookies to help run this site. Accept Cookies
Hire Me
Ross A Hall
freelance UX designer and consultant

Artificial Intelligence: the new fool’s gold?

Follow me on social media...
Artificial Intelligence: the new fool’s gold?

Artificial Intelligence has finally emerged from the world of geeks and computer scientists and started to enter the mainstream. Each day I see another press release or announcement from a company somewhere proclaiming how it is using “AI” to improve insight or offer services. Many of these claims I raise an eyebrow to and hope for the day a new fad comes along and distracts marketers.

For the past few weeks I’ve been doing desk research into AI powered products (disclaimer: I didn’t get to complete my Masters Degree in AI and Expert Systems, but I kept up the interest!) Many of those I’ve looked at have appeared to be little more than sophisticated use of rules engines at best, at worst simple repositioning of existing products. There are genuinely exciting developments going on, only these are few and far between.

To some extent it doesn’t matter what’s driving the technology. It could be a sophisticated AI that’s assessing “big data” sets and forming reasoned decisions. It might just be a set of rules being triggered and adjusted by a bucket brigade. What matters is whether the technology is solving a real business problem.

Many companies I’ve visited and spoken to over the years do not need AI to drive improvements. They need better leadership and management, timely and accurate Management Information and more effective ways of working. To some extent Artificial Intelligence may be an unwelcome distraction as it will divert attention away from their underlying problems and towards a shiny new toy that promises much but will only deliver disappointment.

I don’t doubt AI is going to be more widely used in the coming decade. I know from experience the effective use of the technology can bring substantial benefits when used correctly. What I do doubt is a business that has deeper problems will solve them by buying into the promises those two vowels are making.


Why the answer to every question shouldn't be JQuery - not if you want fast loading pages and better coders

Design, June 25th, 2017

Photography from the streets of Athens. A group of protesters carry their banner in friendly unity.

Photography and Imagery, June 23rd, 2017

Was Star Trek Beyond really worth the wait? Was it an improvement over Into Darkness? Could another British Actor create a compelling villain and out-act the crew?

Sci-Fi, June 21st, 2017

A digital transformation is sweeping through the UK’s economy. Sectors such as retail and entertainment are seeing profound changes that are radically changing the way consumers and business interact. In the past the UK’s insurance sector has been slow to embrace change. Sometimes this is caused by the suppliers to the sector being unresponsive, other […]

Business, June 20th, 2017

Could behavioural change, driven by exemplars and rewards, be more effective at solving income inequality and poverty than taxing the wealthy?

Society, June 20th, 2017

Placing the right value on your services can mean politely turning work down. Just make sure you stick to your guns.

Business, June 19th, 2017

Special Interests
Privacy Policy
Terms of Use