Keeping your AI on the Prize!

Keeping your AI on the Prize!

Year 5 have been talking about how computers can learn and how AI systems are ‘trained’ by feeding them lots of data that is usually categorised by human beings. They offered numerous suggestions about how this could be used, as well as some of the risks that can come, both in apps and in society, when AI systems are trained using incomplete or inaccurate data.  

For a practical demonstration of this, the children had a go at training an AI-powered robot to clean up the sea: they trained it by sorting images of fish and rubbish so that the system would know which was which, then set it loose on a virtual sea floor to see how it got on. It was a fun activity, but gave us a lot to talk about, especially when it started binning innocent sea creatures! 

“Hey, it binned an otter, but I didn’t see one when I was training it, so I couldn’t tell it not to!” 

This prompted some excellent discussion on how we train AI systems and how unintended oversights or gaps in data can have important consequences. 

If you’d like to try for yourself, you can train your own robot here: 

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