Well, when you consider the growing gap between the #ageing population growing trend in most part of the developed world & the foreseen declining / stagnant number of caregivers, there probably should be.
#Ai systems have currently their own limitations, but could definitely bring soon great support to this fragile population starting to loose autonomy. In order to cut through the usual #ai debate, I 100% agree that further development of #ai cannot go without strong fundamental #ethics research development. Those need to go side-by-side. We are human beings and we deserve respect.
In the case of direct « human » contact/ interaction (and not the usual efficiency optimisation « back office » tools where AI applications usually outperform), these new forms of intelligence should definitely pass this famous Alan Turing test where If you think this interaction is human, then it is human. Strong progress is being made to reach that level.
let’s start a potential list though (I am happy to get any suggestions through Fb, Linkedin, mail) :
- Automated remote health monitoring. Sometimes, fast notice of change of behaviour can prevent health disasters… Better to prevent than cure. The whole AI here will be to study your habits & check any potential problematic trends. To this category could fall as well Medication Management Systems (« do not forget your pills », new tablets being automatically delivered – adapted to your measured situation …). As much as this algorythm is understood & controlled by an independent medical association, this could deliver great benefits. A great source of efficiency.
- Health Chatbots as a first contact line (not for emergency) ? In order to save time for healthcare profesionnals & allow them to concentrate on more significant actions. IF it passes Turing test, and does fill this potential need for social interactions, this could be considered.
- Home sensors. Think of an appartment plugged with hundreds of #IoT sensors everywhere (in your bed sheets, your fridge, every lightbulbs,…) monitoring every gestures of yours in order to keep you healthy, in a good shape & limit any incidents (temperature, light, cleanliness… control). Right now, this is quite expensive, but for senior residencies, this could be a source of efficiency (short-term future) & comfort for the tenant. Under this category, we could find as well dedicated Fall detection devices (through image recognition patters, body sensors,…) In other word, a huge source of data with lots of potential applications.
- Smart device (fitbit alike) to keep you fit, but as well tracked in case you lose yourself (or deviate from a usual route, or confirm some erratic Alzheimer patterns in your promenades outside…). We could find here connected « kinesitherapy » equipment that could automatically check you perform the right gestures regularly enough to recover from an injury
- Virtual companions. Loneliness is really an issue. To me, social inclusion in a mixed age environment, intellectual stimulations are key factors to « prevent » dementia, breakdowns,… ). These companions could be as well bot brain coaches, or specific games to keep your sanity fit. The goal is not to replace human interactions, but to help you keeping as much as possible normal human interactions.
- Healthcare Robots. do not think of the gimmick robots on wheels (like on this picture cover) asking for a selfie you usually see at fairs or conventions. Think of smart exoskeletons, prothesis adapting themselves depending on your actions, the ones that help you keeping reasonable level of autonomous mobility.
- Anti-aging research. Well, Sillicon Valley Kurzweil theories are mesmerizing (we’ll win over the aging process and manage to live hundreds of years), but I still consider them as sci-fi, and not really bringing any soon tangible products (which is the goal of ubiz.io accelerator).
As a conclusion, Yes, of course, #ai will be key to effectively face a growing population in need of care. As much as we pay close attention to empathy & humanity – in case of human mimicking interactions – I can only see better service & process improvement. To ubiz.io, humanity equals to sanity and this is the direction we pursue in our #startups selection re our first #Agetech #silvereconomy cohort @ubiz
Tanguy Vanderlinden – CEO Ubiz