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IT experts are excited about future AI innovations and aren't scared of it taking their jobs.
Artificial intelligence (AI) has been a hot topic lately as some of the biggest names in tech debate its future. Tesla CEO Elon Musk worries AI could grow out of control and lead to killer robots. Andrew Ng, former AI lead at Chinese search engine Baidu, thinks it could cause job displacement. And Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the negatives of AI are overblown.
In the end-user computing (EUC) market, AI innovations will help IT professionals do their jobs more than it will threaten their livelihoods, experts said.
"It's not going to take people's jobs, but it will change the way they do it," said Jim Davies, director of IT at Ongweoweh Corp., a pallet and packing management company in Ithaca, N.Y. "Organizations can embrace it or not, but I really feel those that don't will be left behind."
Jack Goldfounder and principal analyst, J. Gold Associates
Some EUC products already take advantage of AI innovations to enforce policies around users' access to corporate data, and it will be interesting to see how these evolve. For example, Citrix's new Analytics Service tracks user activity on a corporate network and recognizes patterns. If the AI technology catches unusual activity, it can block a user from accessing a document or enforce multifactor authentication without the help of an IT person.
If AI evolves a step further and can onboard new users, implement appropriate policies and enforce those policies on its own, it would take some responsibilities off IT pros' plates. But AI won't take their jobs; it will simply change the way they work, said Jack Gold, founder and principal analyst at J. Gold Associates, an analyst firm in Northborough, Mass.
"AI will progress over time and get smarter and have more capabilities," Gold said. "IT people will find different things they need to do that AI isn't good at yet."
Willem Bagchus, messaging and collaboration specialist at United Bank in Parkersburg, W.Va., agreed.
"People have been terrified of AI forever from all these horrific movies," Bagchus said. "I don't quite believe that it will ever become anywhere near a complete replacement for human intelligence. But for monitoring and automating simple tasks, it could do very well."
Machine learning capabilities also continue to grow in end-user applications as well, with AI-based features in Box, Microsoft Office 365 and more.
"AI ultimately will be embedded in most aspects of EUC, from security to management to deployments," Gold said. "It will ultimately make things more efficient and effective for users, and that's what you want."
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