Where AI is Headed in 2019

To say that artificial intelligence is a buzzy technology would be an understatement. There are thousands of AI startups and counting, and they attract billions of dollars in venture capital investment. This buzz has recently prompted some hand wringing and warnings about an over-hyped bubble.

Yet the AI train has already left the station. Like it or not, machine learning is turning our world upside down, and in 2019 we will see more and more AI-driven applications in our lives. Autonomous cars, packages delivered by drones and automated medical diagnostics are just a few examples. Here are some trends and industries to watch for in the coming year:

Hacking Your Health

Hundreds of companies are applying AI to a variety of predictive and prescriptive healthcare diagnostics and monitoring solutions. These developments range from monitoring your health and predicting medical conditions, to taking a deep dive analysis of your DNA sequencing and suggesting how your life could be extended by detection of heredity conditions that develop over decades. This technology could enable you to hack your healthcare and become your own doctor.

For example, at Cognitiv Ventures, we’ve invested in Zebra Medical Vision, an Israeli startup that’s applying AI to radiology in order to examine images more accurately than a radiologist can. And it’s democratizing radiology: For the price of $1 per read, you get an AI-driven analysis that can detect abnormalities more effectively than the radiologist’s human eye, and compare those results to millions of other data points. It’s just one example of how, for repetitive tasks like this, machine learning can be superior to what the most skilled and trained human professional is capable of.

For over a century, medical professionals have relied on technology to improve diagnostics and enhance invasive and noninvasive procedures. This is yet another level of precision and accuracy that’s entering the field.

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