How Blockchain Plays An Important Role In AI Development

Blockchain is bringing about a major transformation in the financial sector. It is a global phenomenon — in fact banks and fintech companies in India are applying a test and scale approach to blockchain technology in a controlled environment. According to a Deloitte report, banks such as Axis Bank, ICICI Bank and Yes Bank are rolling out POCs to further explore blockchain use cases for KYC applications and fraud detection. When compared to other centralised technologies, blockchain technology makes operations safer, faster and more transparent.

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While the impact is felt in the financial sector, blockchain can also play a major role in the development of artificial intelligence:

Here Are Some Use Cases:

  • According to industry experts blockchain and merger of AI into mainstream products and services can create plenty of opportunities for enterprises. The convergence of AI and blockchain can create a foolproof and reliable technology-enabled decision-making systems.
  • Besides building tamper-proof systems, blockchain can play a crucial role in the regulation of machine learning and AI technologies. The essential application of blockchain is seen in a distributed system where the nodes are not foolproof while AI works by finding out patterns and predicting eventual outcomes. One of the best use cases of AI and blockchain merger is distributing the data a blockchain needs to contain.
  • According to a cryptocurrency publication the CoinTelegraph, blockchain can also provide a mechanism for regulation of autonomous AI entities.
  • The cryptocurrency news portal further emphasises a future where standards are defined around what AI has to write to the Blockchain
  • AI also facilitates smart contract testing. For example, AI marketplace SingularityNET,  a decentralised protocol for accessing a network of AI algorithms and agents is an open-source protocol. According to the SingularityNET team, the blockchain technology works well for its transactional and bookkeeping advantages.
  • The SingularityNET platform enables AI developers and programmers to add an AI service for use by the network and receive network payment tokens in exchange.
  • According to AI advisor and tech investor Francesco Corea, blockchain can also help tackle AI’s black box problem by giving a clear audit trail and improving the trustworthiness of the data
  • Another key point by Corea is that blockchain can also help fuel the creation of secure data marketplaces. Given how blockchain technologies can secure the data, it would help lower the entry for data storage and allow for the emergence of AI marketplaces (for eg. SingularityNET) and models marketplaces.
  • It can also provide a route that traces back the machine decision process. It can also help improve the AI effectiveness by providing a secure means for sharing data.
  • There is also a use case where blockchain can benefit from AI. According to this paper from University of Johannesburg, the Bitcoin blockchain system is uses elliptic curves based private and public key generation. But there has been any development of a public-key algorithm which is tamper-proof. According to the researchers, intelligent search algorithms can be used to search the bits of a secret key.

Outlook

Earlier this year we saw a lot of development in the AI-blockchain space with the emergence of decentralised intelligence companies such as Effect.ai, Synapse.ai, Dopamine.ai, AI Blockchain and the OpenMined project among others. Corea also cites ethical implications that lie at the intersection of AI and blockchain — the key difference being the latter fosters centralised intelligence on close data platforms while AI helps decentralised applications in an open-data environment.

An important question in blockchain-AI merger posed by Corea is whether the data can ever be edited and secondly this will further push companies of all sizes to become data hoarders. However, there is another side to the data hoarding argument.  The confluence of blockchain-AI will make data accessible to everyone on the open distributed network, thereby bringing an end to the data hoarding trend led by big tech web companies.

According to AI expert Ronald Van Loon, merger of blockchain and AI can lead to greater security to  trust by creating reliable systems. According to the AI expert, the future of AI development lies on a network that allows free flow of information between connected users and operators. The decentralised nature of Blockchain technology means that this could be the platform where we see the most breakthroughs on AI, he emphasised in his blog.

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Richa Bhatia
Richa Bhatia is a seasoned journalist with six-years experience in reportage and news coverage and has had stints at Times of India and The Indian Express. She is an avid reader, mum to a feisty two-year-old and loves writing about the next-gen technology that is shaping our world.

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