A Comprehensive Guide to the 5 Types of Artificial Intelligence

This comprehensive guide explains 5 types of artificial intelligence: Reactive Machines; Theory Of Mind; Limited Memory Machines; Theory Of Mind; Self-Conscious Artificial Intelligence; Narrow Artificial Intelligence.

A Comprehensive Guide to the 5 Types of Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a branch of technology that seeks to closely mimic the human mind. It uses so-called neural networks, which “learn by processing the labeled data provided during training”, and uses this answer key to learn what characteristics of the input are needed to build the correct output. AI can also use machine learning and deep learning methodologies in combination with computational linguistics to effectively ingest and process unstructured speech and text data sets. Now that you understand what AI is, let's take a look at the different types of artificial intelligence.

There are three categories of AI based on capabilities, and four types of AI based on functionalities. The first type is Reactive Machines. This is the most basic form of AI, which does not store memories or use past experiences to determine future actions. It works only with current data, perceiving the world and reacting to it.

Reactive machines are provided with specific tasks and have no capabilities beyond those tasks. The second type is Theory of Mind AI. This type of AI requires a deep understanding that people and things within an environment can alter feelings and behaviors. It must understand people's emotions, feelings, and thoughts.

Despite the fact that there are many improvements in this field, this type of AI is not yet fully complete. These systems understand their internal traits, states and conditions and perceive human emotions. They will be smarter than the human mind, able to understand and evoke emotions in the people it interacts with, as well as having its own emotions, needs and beliefs. The third type is Limited Memory Machines.

These machines have the capabilities of purely reactive machines, but are also capable of learning from historical data to make decisions. Almost all of the existing applications that we know of belong to this category of AI. All current AI systems, such as those that use deep learning, are trained with large volumes of training data that they store in their memory to form a reference model for solving future problems. For example, an image-recognition AI is trained using thousands of images and their labels to teach it to name the objects it scans.

When an AI of this type scans an image, it uses the training images as references to understand the content of the image presented to it and, based on its “learning experience”, labels the new images with increasing precision. The fourth type is Theory of Mind AI. This is an advanced class of technology that exists only as a concept at present. A theory of AI at the mental level will be able to better understand the entities with which it interacts by discerning their needs, emotions, beliefs and thought processes. While artificial emotional intelligence is already a budding industry and an area of interest for leading AI researchers, reaching the level of Theory of Mind Artificial Intelligence will also require development in other branches of AI.

This is because, to truly understand human needs, AI machines must perceive humans as individuals whose minds can be shaped by multiple factors - essentially “understanding humans” - which is the final stage in the development of AI. The fifth type is Self-Conscious Artificial Intelligence. This type of AI has evolved to be so similar to the human brain that it has developed self-awareness. Creating this type of AI is decades or centuries away from materializing; however, it is still the ultimate goal for all AI research. Not only will this type of AI be able to understand and evoke emotions in the people it interacts with, but it will also have its own emotions, needs, beliefs and potentially desires - something technology doomsayers are wary about due to its potential for catastrophe if it develops self-preservation ideas. Finally, Narrow Artificial Intelligence refers to AI systems that can only perform a specific task autonomously using human-like capabilities.

These machines cannot do more than what they are programmed to do and therefore have a very limited or narrow range of competencies. According to the classification system mentioned above, these systems correspond to all reactive and limited memory AI.