Blog 9 AI in Education 9 What is Artificial Intelligence?
What is Artificial Intelligence?

Written by Rebecca Dove

December 30, 2021

Cover Image Photo by Kindel Media from Pexels

  • Artificial Intelligence completes tasks that can be done by humans.
  • Machine Learning is a subset of Artificial Intelligence.
  • AI powers education technology in different fields.

What is Artificial Intelligence?

Artificial Intelligence is one of the latest cutting-edge technologies. It is where a computer completes tasks such as text messaging, phone calls, online searches, video camera recognition, and so much more. These tasks could be done by humans, but computers are now trained to complete these tasks. According to a researcher, AI is being developed to:

  • Think like humans & think rationally like humans
  • Act Like humans & act rationally like humans

From the granular level, how does AI start? It starts in the 0s, 1s, and algorithms that engineers, data scientists, and product teams build for human applications.Algorithms need inputs(data and information) and then output.

For example, if I wanted to build teach the computer how to select clothes for my shopping experience. I would give the data of size, colors, types of clothes, body type, fabric, price range. The output would be the item I am looking for.If you think of your own day-to-day experiences many of your interactions with social media apps, your phone apps, and technology in your community, AI is already being used and a part of our lives.You can learn more in this article here.

What is Machine Learning?

Machine Learning is a subset of AI. Machine Learning is, “the use of data and algorithms to imitate the way that humans learn, gradually improving its accuracy.”Using mathematical equations and algorithms train machines. Once the machine is trained it organizes the information into models and makes predictions for the user. With Machine Learning professionals need to train algorithms, build models, and data sets for the machine to process data.


Mathematician Catherine O’Neil simply explains machine learning models with the explanation of food.

She explains in her book, Weapons of Math Destructions how algorithms, AI, and Machine Learning models affect our lives. The example below is explained from her book.

  • Data input-family’s appetite, changing appetites, ingredients on hand, her own energy, time, and ambition.
  • Data output-deciding what to cook.
  • Evaluate-the success of a meal by the amount of food her family ate, their opinions about the meal, and how healthy the food was.
  • Her model is improved over time with learning what her family likes, by including a friend or family member, or even sharing her recipes.
  • The program includes: food, nutrition, cost, and family’s tastes.

machine learning model is essential “a file that has been trained to recognize certain types of patterns.” Catherine was recognizing certain patterns about her family’s food preferences on a small scale, and this is an example of one component about machine learning models work.


In Catherine’s case, the dataset would be how she might organize her recipes, organize the types of ingredients that she would include. A data set is essentially a container where one stores information, document, and data.

Algorithms explained by Data Scientist Cathy O’Neil

In today’s world, scientists are building algorithms, models, and datasets to improve machine learning and artificial intelligence to impact our lives.

Read2Think uses Machine Learning, and our goal is to build equitable algorithms so that all children’s voices are recognized and can be accurately understood. AI and machine learning are in many educational disciplines. If you would like to learn about Read2Think, click here.

Read2Think is a web application to help parents, educators, and students to discover a child’s reading challenge. Our software applies machine learning and humans to assess how children read. Visit our homepage to sign up or learn more.

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