The term “artificial intelligence” is used liberally throughout our modern-day technological culture. From literature to movies to music, we interact with the concept of computer-led thinking. Yet, what is the true definition of A.I.? More importantly, to us at DTVMS, what impact does artificial intelligence have on the automotive industry?
A Brief History and Definition
Let’s define what Artificial Intelligence is.
According to Science Direct, artificial intelligence is defined as*: “the simulation of human intelligence by a system or a machine goal-oriented to mimic human behaviors that include perceiving, reasoning, learning, planning, predicting, and so on.”
An interesting yet very brief explanation of A.I. will include a few key points:
John McCarthy*: The pioneer in the field of AI, John McCarthy is best known for coining the term ‘artificial intelligence.’
1956: First use of the term “Artificial Intelligence.”.
Alan Turing*: According to the CIA—does that make this a relevant source?—he created the process by which we test a computer’s ability to think. The “Turing Test” tests a machine’s ability to behave in a manner indistinguishable from that of a human.
1961*: The first industrial robot starts working at a General Motors plant in New Jersey.
2022: DTVMS writes a series of blog posts about A.I. in automotive retail marketing—this is pivotal, right?
As we all know, automotive manufacturing uses artificial intelligence in varying segments of the car-making process. From the early adaptation of robotics in the construction of vehicles to the futuristic uses of autonomy in a self-driving automobile, there is no shortage of ways an A.I. can be useful for the evolution of our industry.
From a conceptual standpoint, adopting ai’s processes and protocols of dealership life can even potentially streamline the interaction between business and customer. Yet, one must wonder at what expense? We have all had an experience where Human Intelligence should have sent the A.I. to the corner with a dunce cap.
One such example occurred at a dealership I consulted with, where the A.I. engaged with a customer exactly how it was to:
“Hello, thank you for choosing ABC Motors. How may I assist you?” It texted.
“Hi, I’m on a test drive with one of your vehicles, and I’m not going to be able to make it back tonight. I need to take a hairbrush to my cousin.” The customer responded.
“Thank you for that information. I would be happy to pass this on to a sales associate who will reach out to you as soon as possible.” The computer texted back.
It took two days for the dealership to hunt down their vehicle and two minutes to call their vendor partner.
The Skeptic in Me
I am very skeptical of vendor conversations about ai. In many ways, we haven’t perfected the human side of our process. We struggle to achieve full CRM use. We struggle with departmental cooperativeness. How can we confidently trust a computer to do a job that we humans aren’t doing well? How can we build a perfect artificial intelligence with our human intelligence flaws?
That is not to say there are not a lot of opportunities for A.I. implementation in our space. The ability to target conquest-marketing, build engagement and customer loyalty, personalize ads, and upsell products are all made easier with the assistance of an intelligent computer.
But we are still in the bridge-building process, and as we grow into our new evolution, it is incumbent upon humans not to rely too heavily on a computer, still learning how to think.