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Artificial Intelligence (AI) Literacy: AI Literacy

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Resource Guide


What is AI Literacy?

There is no current common definition for AI Literacy, but Long & Magerko (2020) summarize it as a set of competencies that enables individuals to critically evaluate AI technologies; communicate and collaborate effectively with AI; and use AI as a tool online, at home, and in the workplace.  

This can be organized under three categories:

  1. Design Concepts: People who are AI literate should have a conceptual understanding of the technology involved in creating AI-based tools, as well as the relevant computer science and engineering subfields. Since the understanding is conceptual, it does not require a technical background or training.
  2. Evaluating AI Tools: People who are AI literate should be able to critically evaluate AI tools and their outputs, so as to productively communicate and collaborate with them. Understanding the design concepts is foundational to this competency.  
  3. Ethics of AI Applications: People who are AI literate should be able to consider the human-centered social and ethical implications of the variety of AI applications. To understand how be an ethically responsible user and creator of AI tools, all three competencies are necessary. 

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Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence is both a field of study and a type of technology. Artificial Intelligence or AI refers to the capacity of computers or other machines to exhibit or simulate human behavior (OED). (Read More)

AI technologies are data-driven, and rely on three major subfields:

Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)

"The tendency to anthropomorphize AI systems is one of the big obstacles in the way of trying to understand how AI might impact the world in the future." - Nick Bostrom, Professor of Philosophy Oxford University 

One of the important things to note is that we do not currently have Artificial General Intelligence (AGI). AGI, also known as Strong AI or Human-Level Machine Intelligence (HLML) refers to systems capable of conducting a complete range of intellectual tasks at a level equaling that of the best-performing human beings. This type of Artificial Intelligence is still entirely theoretical, but continues to be researched. (Read More)

AI Family Tree

What we are really seeing today are different AI-driven applications. Therefore, it's important to understand the applications that fall under AI.

Below, you will find an AI Family Tree (created by librarians at McGill University) that illustrates some, but not all, of the relationships between different applications and AI. To fully understand the tree, see their blog post.

What is AI?

Source: Crash Course