For today and the rest of the camp we have moved over the road and now get to work from Griffith University. We are fortunate to use this funky space, located in the Visual Arts studio. We are also kept company by the cutest little 3D printer I have ever seen.
For today’s opening session, we dove straight in hearing from Brent Richards (Medical Director of Innovation and Director of Critical Care Research at Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service). Brent shared with us the future of AI and what that can mean. As head of innovation, Brent is very well equipped to enlighten us on the possibilities of AI; as he lives in the space of possibilities.
With the only constant in the workplace being change, AI is no longer a nice to have but a must-have for businesses. Especially in the medical industry, we are in the process of a digital information overload, while human capacity is fixed and the quantity of medical information per patient rises, there is a growing need for AI-enabled decision support. On the cusp of the 4th industrial revolution, we draw the conclusion that data is the new oil, and AI is the new electricity. This data-driven world is making us change our perception of data from being an expense, to data being a valuable and highly sort after asset. With whole industry domains dedicated to data and the collection and curation of data. Now, after previous sessions in this program, I am starting to wonder if that google validation test ‘I am human, click all the images with street lights’ is just a way for Google to improve its image recognition at no cost. Also, you can start working in the AI domain today and get paid for it. You will need a vital piece of vision process, and its the best cognitive system we have so far… it’s you and your brain! Companies are paying people to curate their data, amazing times we live in.
We broke out into groups to discuss the concept that AI will make humans redundant and what we think the impacts will be. It is fairly unanimous that AI will affect 100% of industries in some capacity. There is widespread fear that jobs will be lost and people will be out of work because of AI, however, there is a strong opinion that AI is creating industry and this will not be the doom and gloom we are hearing about. We draw the comparison to the idea of apps (phone app) developers, this whole job space was inconceivable just over 10 years ago, prior to the wide use of smartphone and the deployment of the app store. Think about how many people fill this space also think of game testers.
AI, in part, is here to solve the question ‘is there something I would rather spend my day doing’. We will be (already are) working alongside AI, which is a tool help lighten our load on repeatable tasks allowing us more time on the things we/humans are best at.
After a much-needed morning tea coffee break, we heard from Jack Gillespie at Deloitte about team collaboration tools. This is a really quirky guy and great fun to watch (new lesson, you can never have enough memes in your presentation, and if you open with a Simpsons-style image of yourself, then you can’t go wrong). Jack entertained us with his fascinating background, I was particularly interested in his digital vertical garden that was 11ft tall (if I remember correctly), apparently it’s interactive so that defiantly sounds cool and futuristic. He shared some cool tips, tricks and his perspective on different team collaboration tools. Very happy to learn Jira is a widely used tool, (as Jira development is something I am particularly interested in), also Slack is a key player (which is something we are using at the camp, so, go us for being in the know). We learnt the different development processes such as waterfall and agile and that in real-world development often takes a ‘wa-gile’ approach. Jack’s final thoughts were around project planning and that ‘Everybody has a plan until you get punched in the face (~Mike Tyson)’ and as a developer, you just get really good at getting punched in the face (and picking yourself back up).
The teams then re-assembled for some more group work and are feverishly developing their solutions and pitches. It’s great to see the groups taking some varied approaches and really putting their entrepreneur/startup hats on. There a number of girls I defiantly see being my boss in the future and strong leaders in this industry. I also see many girls returning to this program as speakers and presenters in the future, ready to inspire the next generation (my daughter may even been one of the girls they inspire *tear*).
We began the after-lunch session on human factors with Gemma Read from the University Sunshine Coast. Gemma explained that impact that Human Factors and Ergonomics (HFE) plays in development and how this can be applied to AI development. High consideration of HFE in the design phase of development often leads to reduce cost of detection and resolution of human performance related issues during the implementation and operation of a system. Some projects that under address these factors in the design phase can pay the price in the later stages of the cycle. In the scope of AI, ‘human error’ shifts from the human/user and moves to the designer (P-I-C-N-I-C error, will have a whole new meaning I guess). This means testing and verification is important. With the wide use of AI, we can see other issues potentially arise such as, users placing too much or too little trust in the system, skill degradation as we no longer need to learn/teach how to carry out the task that AI is preforming (i.e. ask yourself, will young people still learn to drive if the world moves to solely driver-less cars?). Another consideration, when deploying AI solutions and their impacts on the human users, is that risk of overloading or under-loading usere. For example, driver-less cars don’t demand active engagement from the co-drivers, therefore it’s tempting for them to multitask and engage in distracting tasks or even sleep.
To end the day, we head from Ted Goranson from Griffith University who gave us some promising possibilities about this space and a reaffirming message that it is OK to be disruptors and the world needs people who may not fit the norm to help challenge/ change and ignite stale domains. There are areas that are tired and waiting for an injection of innovation and I see many girls in the room today that fit this description.
As an extra special treat, we heard from Beth Cardier, a Cognitive Narratologist from Sirius-Beta. Beth shared stories that resonated with all girls in the room and a message that could have only come from someone like herself. In the short moments I got to listen to her and the time I managed to steal (also the shameless selfie, totally fan-girling over her, I’m not going to lie). Beth is a true role model to all women and has truly captured my respect. Some of my take ways from meeting and listening to her today are:
· STEM might be closer than you think
· A leader is the story teller of your tribe
· How non-technical (‘inter-disciplinary’) people can bridge the gap between the two worlds, by finding common terms and learn what metaphors you have in common
· When leading a male dominate team, as a female, actions speak louder than words and show you deserve respect by your actions not your words (that’s my interpretation of her message)
Beth left us with the empowering message to harness what we’re experiencing in this program and that this community is something she wished she had during her early career. Also, to be mindful when people come to you, if they come to you with a problem, then that is good, they value your input/knowledge, if they come to you and just tell you about themselves, then that speaks to where they are at.
Finally, special mention to Kelvin Ross reinforcing Beth’s message and being so aware/active around the importance of diversity, equality and inclusion. Thanks for being a driving force and supporting this program. Now we are through day 4, we are starting to see into the inner workings of AI and it is no longer a ‘black box’.
See you all tomorrow, and don’t foget, we’re getting GYG tomorrow night!