Prelims level : Science and Technology Mains level : Artificial Intelligence Applications, Facial Recondition Technology
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Why in news:

  • Facial recognition technology being used by china to track and control the Uighurs. It is the first known example of a government intentionally using artificial intelligence for racial profiling,


  • The facial recognition technology, which is integrated in China’s rapidly expanding networks of surveillance cameras, looks exclusively for Uighurs based on their appearance and keeps records of their comings and goings for search and review.
  • The practice makes China a pioneer in applying next-generation technology to watch its people, potentially using technology for automated racism. Facial recognition technology uses aspects like skin tone and face shapes to sort images in photos or videos.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

  • It is a branch of computer science which deals with creating computers or machines as intelligent as human beings. The term was coined in 1956 by John McCarthy at the Dartmouth conference, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • It is a simulation of human intelligence processes such as learning (the acquisition of information and rules for using
  • the information), reasoning (using the rules to reach approximate or definite conclusions), and self-correction by machines, especially computer systems. Nowadays it has become an umbrella term which encompasses everything from robotic process automation to actual robotics. It has become widely popular and gained prominence due to its multifaceted application ranging from healthcare to military devices.

Artificially Intelligent Technologies Applications:

  • Robotic process automation: Automation is the process of making a system or processes function automatically. Robots can be programmed to perform high-volume, repeatable
  • tasks normally performed by humans and further it is different from IT automation because of its agility and adaptability to the changing circumstances.
  • Natural language processing (NLP) is the processing of human language and not computer language by a computer program. For Example, spam detection, which looks at the subject line and the text of an email and decides if it’s junk.
  • Pattern recognition is a branch of machine learning that focuses on identifying patterns in data.
  • Machine vision is the science of making computers visualize by capturing and analyzing visual information using a camera, analog-to-digital conversion, and digital signal processing.
  • It is often compared to human eyesight, but machine vision isn’t bound by biology and can be programmed to see through walls. It is used in a range of applications from signature identification to medical image analysis.
  • Machine learning: Field of study that gives computers the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed. Deep learning is a subset of machine learning and can be thought of as the automation of predictive analytics.
  • Robotics is a field of engineering focused on the design and manufacturing of robots. Robots are often used to perform tasks that are difficult for humans to perform or perform consistently.

In Indian Context:

  • The partnership between think tank in India NITI Aayog (National Institute for Transforming India) with Google to develop India’s artificial intelligence ecosystem will help to improve healthcare, education, agriculture, transportation, develop innovative governance systems and improve overall economic productivity. This will  also  help  in  promoting entrepreneurs associated with it, research in the field in premier institutions like IITs and providing crash course to students across India.


  • Development in such advanced technologies affects employment opportunities also as machines can do the work of many labours. Whether they can compete with a human brain is also a question.
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