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The Future is Here: Artificial Intelligence & What it Means For Our Kids

From healthcare to transportation, we believe it is incredibly important for young people and adults to be learning about AI, and we are writing more about it to equip teachers and parents with information to help young people ask good questions about the implications of AI on their lives and livelihoods.

When I wrote Getting Smart in the fall of 2010, I predicted that by 2015 most learning platforms would feature a smart recommendation engine, similar to iTunes Genius, that will build recommended learning experiences for students.

also predicted that “information from keystroke data would unlock the new field of motivation research, yielding insights about what causes students to persist through difficult work.” And we’re still a few years away from that.

And over the Christmas break, a superintendent asked me what learning would look like in 2035, so I blogged him a response and that thought experiment caused me to make artificial intelligence and machine learning, the practical subset, my personal learning project for the year.

Over a two-week period in August I spotted 101 current applications of AI–it’s part of every facet of life today from music to transportation, medicine, retail and, of course, learning.

We need to promote deeper learning through big projects –sustained efforts against complex tasks in novel situations–that’s how we’ll best prepare youth for the automation economy.

It’s not just learning to code, although that may be a useful vocational skill, it’s combining Cause + Code: The New Impact Formula, the inclination and ability to become an expert at a cause worth fighting for and combining it with big data tools and strategies.

An example of how this is working: 800 North Carolina factory jobs got shipped to factories in China and call centers in Bangalore, where they blossomed to 1600, but they’ll come back as 80 high wage jobs working with smart robots and chatbots.

The 16 member study panel issuing the report sees increasingly useful applications of AI, with potentially profound positive impacts on our society and economy emerging by 2030.

The study identifies eight domains where AI is already having or is projected to have the greatest impact: transportation, healthcare, education, low-resource communities, public safety and security, employment and workplace, home/service robots and entertainment.

If we can automate everything that is a repetitive application of rules then the value add as human beings is going to be in how we approach complex and novel situations–that suggests a project-based pedagogy aiming for deeper learning experiences.

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