Cover Image: Exploring AI

Exploring AI

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Member Reviews

STEM books are typically a strong choice when picking books for kids. They explain a complex concept in an accessible way, providing at least a base understanding. The problem comes when it's a rapidly changing field, like this one, and what is published today may be irrelevant next month. High turn over.

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And so the gaslighting starts… Well, that's going to be some people's verdict of this book, which actually is very snappy, easy and decent in its introduction to AI and machine learning. Here it seems only of benefit – we're shown how it might have been taught through piece-by-piece human prodding how to generate images to convert visuals to text for the visually impaired. We then see how it would process an image in the cancer-detecting lab it's being used at. Oh, and the next thing an AI does is protect freshwater supplies when deemed at risk, and track beluga whales and other critters. Forget Superman!

We do close with the warning that ethics needs to be highlighted in the development of AI programmes and datasets. And we also see how none of it is (so far) possible without human creation, forethought, checking and rechecking. The learning the machine can spark off from is all from us humans – it's actually been my biggest earning job over the last three or four months, as I write, too. So no, I don't think this is biased towards the machine – there's barely an image here without a human in, and while done well this is not suspiciously good! In fact it's a very attractive and intelligently-done piece, nicely geared to the upper years of primary school and getting people on a sound platform from which to operate, benefit from or train AIs of their own. A strong four stars.

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This book is a great overview for AI and I recommend it for students and teachers who are looking for an introduction into this popular topic.

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I'm kind of torn on this book.
It's a very high level overview of how AI works and in what industries it may be used for and how. It includes pictures and questions to accompany the text. It's obviously written for children, as it says the age-range is 8-11. Though it makes me question if that's really true, as I find the language and the questions one has to think about to be quite difficult for that age-range.

With that reason 3/5*

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An easy to understand introduction to AI for all ages without technical jargon that allows the reader to feel at ease with AI, technology, and advancements in the field of AI.

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If you like science, computers, robots, and educational things, this book is for you. Explanations of how AI is used, some basic ways in who gathers the data, who programs it, and who uses the technology and for what purposes in aiding human beings are mapped out. Great illustrations. The "Use Your Brain" sections are brilliant and would definitely help a child have a hands-on experience of how AI works. There is also a helpful glossary included. In my opinion, this would be a great 'experience' for any scientifically-minded reader.

A 5-Star rating from me.

~Eunice C., Reviewer/Blogger~

September 2023

Disclaimer: This is my honest opinion based on the complimentary review copy sent by NetGalley and the publisher.

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