FORBES: Can We Trust Critical Infrastructure To Artificial Intelligence?

ORIGINALLY POSTED: 1 JULY 2022
AUTHOR: AJ ABDALLAT FOR FORBES TECHNOLOGY COUNCIL
LOS ANGELES, CA

 

Artificial intelligence (AI) is thought to be instrumental to the complex phase confronting critical infrastructure and its sectors. Every industry is facing the mounting necessity to become more agile, resourceful and sustainable. As a result of those pressures, entities in charge of systems that are essential in our everyday lives have made substantial strides toward constructive transformation and smarter digital initiatives. Ambitions for smart cities with intelligent critical infrastructure are no exception.
 
Out of the 16 “critical systems” infrastructure sectors defined by the U.S. Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency (CISA), AI stands to make some of its greatest impacts on energy, power/utilities, manufacturing and healthcare during this transformational stage, which seeks to make our systems as smart as possible. AI is expected to play a foundational role across our most critical infrastructures.
 
However, some are hesitant and concerned that AI isn’t relatable enough to be delegated such an important assignment, asking important questions about whether it’s capable of taking on such vital tasks, collaborative enough to cooperate with humans and trustworthy enough to prove its transparency, reliability and dependability. As the CEO of an AI company making advanced digitalization software products and solutions for critical infrastructure industries, I believe that enabling humans and AI to form a trusting partnership should always be a crucial consideration.
 
 
AI Across Major Critical Infrastructure Systems
 
Whether because of resistance to buy-in by stakeholders that misinterpret AI’s goals or underutilization of proposed solutions—and unrealistic expectations (or simple distrust) around the technology’s ability to solve complex problems—AI adoption and implementation reluctance have been noteworthy obstacles. However, AI has long been proving its value across major industries such as those within critical infrastructure. It’s often at the forefront of driving valuable strategies and optimizing the industry across all operations, largely putting such uncertainties to rest.
 
According to Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott, “You really could transform not just human well-being through the end product of what you’re building. The process of solving the problem could put into place this infrastructure that could also define entire new sectors of the industry and our economic outputs for decades ahead.”
 
In the coming years, AI is positioned to demonstrate its pivotal part in the transformational phase confronting our major industries and could pave important paths for compelling approaches designed to make our critical infrastructure more intelligent. Several examples of AI at work have already presented themselves, yet provide just a glimpse of what we might see in the future.
 
 
Power And Utilities: AI impacts the power grid system through its capacity to absorb usage pattern data and deliver precise calculations of prospective demand, making it a prime technology for grid management. AI can examine massive amounts of data across plants and accurately forecast when surplus energy is available to supply and charge batteries or vice versa.
 
 
Energy: AI works to help the oil and gas industry boost efficiency, elevate resource output, democratize expertise and grow value while decreasing environmental repercussions. AI can support stakeholders in enhancing production and progressing asset upkeep by isolating drilling prospects, examining pipes for issues with remote robotics equipment at the edge and forecasting potential critical equipment wear and tear.
 
 
Manufacturing: AI is digitalizing procedures and delivering instrumental insights across manufacturing. Predictive maintenance solutions engaging sensors and other practical data provide optimization use cases extending from heightened, more simplified documentation tracing to supporting decision-makers through corrective action proposals around equipment preservation, persistent operational challenges and other obstacles concerning sudden strategy departures.
 
 
In terms of the supply chain, the digital transformation of data and widespread sensor examinations can be based on human-readable AI recommendations in cooperation with critical stakeholders. AI can also offer simplified process automation. Heightened holistic visibility around operations can increase predictability, improving corrective responsiveness.
 
 
Healthcare: AI helps tackle healthcare’s currently problematic operational processes that could lead to complex challenges at the point of patient care. AI solutions help yield a more well-rounded understanding of the industry’s most important data. With AI making vast quantities of previously unstructured data immediately understandable to stakeholders, the outcome could be improved prognostic precision and simplified organizational operations, alongside more conscientious patient screening and procedure recommendations. AI implementations have the potential to advance the industry’s methodology, enhancing both medical professional and patient encounters.
 
 
Explainable Is More Trustworthy
 
Successful AI adoption and implementation come down to trust. One path to trusting AI with the digital transformation of critical infrastructure is explainable AI. Explainable AI approaches are established in solutions that deliver intelligible, observable and adjustable audit trails of their actionable advice, often resulting in increased usage from necessary participants.
 
This capability is fundamental for describing corrective recommendations in a human-readable way with clear evidence that mitigates uncertainty and risk. In this way, these solutions are collaborative with humans. AI solutions’ usefulness may be measured by human-usability with their definitive worth equating to their ability to provide humans with usable intelligence so they can make quicker, more precise decisions and develop confidence. Explainable AI helps ensure critical stakeholders aren’t left out of the mix. It facilitates a cohesive correlation between humans and machines, tethered with trust.
 
 
AI And Imminent Intelligent Infrastructure
 
AI solutions are advancing at an accelerated pace, and such solutions are expected to be essential for creating smarter cities and generating the intelligent critical infrastructures of our future. From energy and power/utilities to manufacturing and healthcare, AI helps make our most pivotal systems as efficient as possible. There are boundless opportunities for AI to make a substantial impact across our most fundamental industries. As the technology has matured and established itself with impressive outcomes, adoption and implementation have steadily increased.
 
AI is already all around us, in virtually every part of our daily lives. Where critical infrastructure is concerned, AI is set to be the linchpin for our global strategy around digital transformation efforts. Adoption, implementation and trust challenges can also be mitigated with the use of explainable solutions, now and into our future.
 
 
 
Check out the Article on Forbes – HERE.
 
 
 
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