WVU Tech Working Towards Advancements in Artificial Intelligence - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

WVU Tech Working Towards Advancements in Artificial Intelligence

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Artificial intelligence is not just something from our favorite movies. At the West Virginia University Institute of Technology researchers and students are working to advance it.

AI can be broken down into four categories, thinking and acting rationally and thinking and acting humanly. 

For Dr. Stephany Coffman-Wolph, it’s all about the thinking using what’s called fuzzy logic.

“You have normal binary tube logic where you have yes or no or on and off, which is how computers normally operate,” explained Dr. Coffman-Wolph, who is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems at WVU Tech. “For fuzzy logic, you get all of the in between values so you can have a much richer environment to manipulate in, which is much more like humans do, cause we have a lot of maybe, sort ofs and that kind of thing.”

Creating fuzzy logic also deals with another concept called “the hunch factor.”  For example, when you use a computer to find or do something, there’s no guessing. It takes you exactly where you need to go.  Adding the hunch factor adds human intuition or a “gut feeling” and guessing to give the computer more or less confidence in a decision.

“If it’s for something or searching for something, then it’s going to do that much more like a human than a computer algorithm that tends to be much more brute force or very exacting as to what it’s going to do where a human doesn’t quite,” said Dr. Coffman-Wolph.

Once the computer begins to think humanly, the question is, where will this artificial intelligence be used?

“You can build a robot that could make could find things or do search patterns or different things and it would use my sort of more human-like approach to doing it,” Dr. Coffman-Wolph said. “It saves time and makes it faster and it also gets us a more human-like answer.”

Dr. Coffman-Wolph says she believes it will take some time to actually have robots and other technology like in the movies, but she hopes it happens.

“We have a lot of things that can work very much along side us to do different things cause they’ll have that much more human interaction and make decisions on that,” she explained. “We’ll have all the automated cars and automated systems that we want to have.”

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