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Opportunities in AI by Andrew Ng

AI is the New Electricity.

Andrew Ng

It is a general-purpose technology that is applicable to all fields in equal terms. Just as Electricity brought transformation in every bit of industry, AI has started bringing that kind of transformation in the industry. There are opportunities along with some risks in AI and generative AI. Let’s talk about Andrew Ng’s perspective on this:

Andrew Ng’s Talk on Opportunities in AI

Andrew Ng, a Coursera co-founder, chief scientist at Baidu and prominent AI specialist, spoke on the opportunities in AI on July 26, 2023, at Stanford University. Ng discussed a wide range of issues in his discussion, including:

Foundational Concepts Behind Opportunities in AI

Andrew Ng first laid out the Foundational concepts behind the opportunities in AI.

Trends in AI technologies and tools

Ng began his presentation by delving headlong into the ever-changing field of artificial intelligence. He emphasised how swiftly AI has advanced in the past few years(2010–2020), with crucial developments coming left and right. Consider it an epidemic of growth. New machine learning algorithms, oceans of data to explore, and the rise of deep learning — it’s as if AI has discovered its purpose.

AI Collection

Supervised learning and generative AI:

If artificial intelligence were an Avengers team, supervised learning and generative AI would be Iron Man and Captain America. Ng revealed some of their superpowers. Supervised learning teaches robots to perform amazing things like recognising animals in photographs and comprehending your voice instructions. One main example Ng used of restaurant review sentiment analysis. In contrast, generative AI builds things out of thin air. Consider it conjuring up images of art, music, or even complete novels. But the amazing thing is that generative AI uses Supervised machine learning.

Supervised Learning and generative AI

The adoption of AI

Ng’s presentation was not just about futuristic technology; he anchored it in reality. AI is no longer the stuff of science fiction. It’s in healthcare, banking, manufacturing, and pretty much everywhere else.

Kiasaco Research on AI Adoption

However, there is a catch. We need more talented AI mages and certain spellcasting rules if AI is to truly perform its magic. Just like Google, Meta and Amazon made their way into people’s daily lives. But, the rate at which people are adopting AI whether it is in supervised learning, generative AI, Unsupervised or reinforcement learning, will double, triple or quadruple in the next three years. But, it all depends on investments from venture capitalists, and investment firms to bid on the AI which is a really smart thing to do at this time.

Opportunities in AI

Ng identified a number of opportunities in AI, including:

AI for productivity

Many jobs that are presently handled by people can be automated with AI, freeing up workers to focus on more creative and strategic work. Large Language Models (LLMs) are great but people are not taking benefit from it as much as they should. What Andrew meant was, that people need to use these language models more for developing things that is, use LLMs as a developer tool like custom AI applications.

AI for productivity

AI for new products and services

AI may be utilised to build previously unimaginable services and products. AI may be used to create more efficient self-driving cars, personalised medical procedures, and new kinds of entertainment. Ng mentioned, that there will be fads along the way. Some products or services will shoot to the sky in no amount of time but they will diminish as soon as they reach their limits. It happened for the iPhone Flash App, iPhone integrated the Flash and Kaboom the app went out of business.

Products and Services

So, we do not have to worry about the apps rolling in and out but have to keep our focus on making new features available for the greater good of people and businesses(Both do not seem obvious but it is possible).

AI for social good

AI has the potential to address some of the world’s most urgent issues, including climate change and poverty. AI, for example, may be utilised to produce more efficient energy systems and new educational possibilities. The reality is, that AI has not been widely adopted yet for the greater good.

Social impact

For this, developers need to use AI technology as a tool to solve problems in a unique way. Unique way I say, Tail-end problems that do not seem too big for the businesses in narrow niches like Food Inspection, material grading and crop yield enhancement etc.

Process for Building Startups

Ng also spoke on the process of creating AI enterprises. He emphasised the necessity of starting with a clear problem to solve, and he recommended entrepreneurs to focus on creating goods that people value. He also emphasised the significance of assembling a good team and soliciting user input early and frequently.

According to Andrew Ng, Companies or startups have to integrate AI into the existing businesses for them to flourish and invest more in the AI field which would eventually maximize the rate of development in the field of AI.


At the hardware level requirement for AI applications, Capital Investments needed to be made to compete against the giants of the market like NVIDIA, Intel and AMD. For the Infrastructure level, It is also capital-intensive and concentrated as it is against giants like Google Cloud and AWS. Alongside the Infrastructure, there is the developer level, which is again hyper-competitive, startups can go there but it is better to go to the next level which is really picking the niches.

The next layer I say, is the Application Level, which has enormous potential for building successful businesses, whether that is a SaaS or a combination of a Specific domain like romance, business advice and AI.

AI Risks and Social Impact

Ng also discussed the potential risks of AI, such as the risk of job displacement and the risk of AI being used for malicious purposes. He argued that it is important to develop ethical guidelines for the use of AI and to invest in research on AI safety.

Also, AI today still has some problems with bias, fairness and accuracy but it is changing with the development. In the case of job displacement, higher-wage jobs are being disrupted due to AI technology in contrast to the previous revolution of automotive where lower-wage jobs were disrupted.

Cyber Attacks using AI Technology

Therefore, companies, corporations and governments need to make sure that people whose jobs are displaced should be taken care of. Also, there should be a more efficient effort in stopping AI use for illegal purposes.

Key Notes from the Lecture:

Here is a more conversational expansion of some of the key points from Ng’s talk:

AI is transforming the world

AI is already having a significant influence on our lives, and its impact will only expand in the coming years. Artificial intelligence will be utilized to create novel products and services, automate jobs, and tackle some of the world’s most serious issues. But, there is still time or even decades where one can say AI can do anything a human can do.

AI is a powerful tool, but it is important to use it responsibly

AI is a great tool, but it must be used wisely. We must set ethical rules for the use of AI and invest in AI safety research. AI gradually develops itself as well, but the scenario of AI becoming a Superintelligent system and taking over the human race is not factually realistic for now. But human manipulation is making AI a scary thing for the common folks.

Ng’s presentation provided an intriguing look into the future of artificial intelligence. He expressed explicitly that AI has the ability to improve the world, but he also emphasised the significance of utilising AI responsibly for a better future.

Here are some additional thoughts on the opportunities in AI:

  • AI is still in its early stages of development: AI is still a relatively new technology, and there is still a lot of room for growth. This means that there are many opportunities for entrepreneurs to create new AI-powered products and services.

  • AI is becoming more accessible: AI is becoming more accessible to businesses and individuals of all sizes. This is due to the development of cloud-based AI platforms and the increasing availability of open-source AI tools.

  • AI is being used in a wide range of industries: AI is being used in a wide range of industries, including healthcare, finance, manufacturing, and retail. This means that there are many opportunities for entrepreneurs to apply AI to solve problems in new and innovative ways.

Final Thoughts

If you want to learn more about AI, I recommend watching Ng’s presentation or reading his blog entries and papers. AI is a strong technology with the ability to positively change the world, and it is critical to be aware of its capabilities.

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