Understanding the language of AI – a glossary with essential terms everyone should know

Technology has a remarkable ability to revolutionise our way of life. In the past, cars replaced horse-drawn carriages, washing machines and vacuums saved us hours of housework, and mobile phones became much more than mere communication devices.

Nowadays, the topic that dominates discussions at work, school, and even in our homes is Artificial Intelligence (AI). This conversation is largely driven by the emergence of chatbots like ChatGPT and Bard. These innovative conversational platforms utilise AI to provide instant answers, foster creativity, and facilitate learning. They can engage in conversation with users, offering assistance with tasks such as answering questions, composing emails and essays, generating content, and translating text.

While it is widely acknowledged that AI falls short of human capabilities in many areas, debates persist about whether it has the potential to replace certain jobs or even pose a threat to humanity itself. Educational institutions are grappling with the challenge of detecting AI usage in students’ assignments to prevent cheating. However, AI also brings undeniable benefits, depending on how it is used. Its potential could completely reshape economies. This potential could be worth $4.4 trillion to the global economy annually, according to McKinsey Global Institute, which is why you should expect to hear more and more about Artificial Intelligence.

We are here to assist you in familiarising yourself with AI by demystifying and explaining key terminology because as people become more accustomed to a world intertwined with AI, new terms are popping up everywhere. So whether you’re trying to sound smart over drinks or impress in a job interview, here are some important AI terms you should know. Rest assured, we did not employ AI to write this text (although it would have undoubtedly been quicker!).

We will aim to keep this glossary updated.