Machine Learning Challenges and Impact: an interview with Thomas Dietterich

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BigML’s Co-founder and Chief Scientist, Professor Thomas Dietterich was recently interviewed by National Science Review, a peer-reviewed journal aimed at reviewing cutting-edge developments across science and technology in China and around the world.

ML for Ecosystem Management

The piece touches on many contemporary topics that are source for much debate in the AI/Machine Learning community as well as his own projects:

  • Expanding application areas of Machine Learning e.g., anomaly detection techniques that can identify unusual transactions and present them to a human analyst for law enforcement or improving the management of forest fires in Oregon by applying reinforcement learning.

  • The impact of deep learning and its pros and cons with specific emphasis on the migration of academic talent on the brain drain caused by academics specialized on the topic migrating to large technology companies.

  • Interpretation of alternative future scenarios involving advanced AI systems, technological singularity and the (so called) superintelligence i.e., impact on humanity as a whole from economical, cultural and moral perspectives.

For extra credit, we also highly recommend the presentation below, which Professor Dietterich gave in Valencia at the The Age Of Machine Learning event sponsored by BigML. It does an excellent job of bringing everyone up to speed in understanding the roots and evolution of the discipline of Machine Learning and the future challenges facing technologists like us and the society as a whole. Enjoy!

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