A.I. vs Algorithms: Your words matter… especially in your proposals

  • September 25th, 2020

With new technologies being born every day and an increase in the number of tech-based startup companies who often create them, it can be difficult to get a handle on the proper nomenclature of what type of technology you are discussing. One common word that is often misused is the tech term “Artificial Intelligence” (also written as A.I. or just AI). So many people use the term AI when in fact, what they are actually referring to is an algorithm based technology.

What’s the difference? While all AI programs have algorithms as core functionality, not all algorithms make a product artificially intelligent. An algorithm is a programmed decision prompted by environmental factors. Data are entered to determine a set outcome from the product in the presence of certain conditions or scenarios. Algorithms are not adaptable. They can not learn, they can not self-incorporate new data into their database. They must be specifically programmed for each task they are to perform. 

AI relies on algorithms, but in a different way. AI has so much data programmed into it that it has actually developed the ability to create new algorithms for itself to follow in similar future situations. 

A simple way to remember this is that AI outcomes are adaptable and “learned”, while an algorithm dictates an outcome based on a pre-existing recipe of what the situation calls for.

Words and concepts like this can be very confusing. As technology progresses there will be more and more new terms and definitions to remember. Life is busy, and finding the time to study concepts like these can be difficult, especially for busy entrepreneurs doing everything they can to be awarded #SBIR or #STTR #funding. One thing successful leaders tend to have in common is their ability to delegate and outsource. 

A consulting agency such as @EBHConsulting can handle details like this for you while you, allowing you to offer the entirety of your focus where it needs to be: on your new business. 


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