“How can we affect education for the better?” In this thought-provoking AI Talk, Jonny Gilmore, CEO of Ai8, explains the transformative potential of human:machine teams in the education to career value chain. Ai8 aims to redefine the entire system of education, training, employment, and upskilling, making it more bespoke, affordable, and accessible.
As a young student with exceptional math skills, Jonny was a self-directed learner in the UK public school system. At age 12, he passed exams that are typically not completed until age 17 or 18. His reward? Essentially detention for the remaining 5 years of his school career. This destroyed Jonny’s love of learning, but ultimately ignited his passion for redefining “education-into-work.”
Ai8 is not an AI SaaS business. It aspires to bring about systems change in education, employment, and upskilling. The company envisions a future where AI agents collaborate with human employees, forming advanced "hybrid teams." Ai8 is comprised of Jonny, Dr. Alastair Moore, Richard Groves, Jiangbo Shangguan, Niall Roche, and many advisors.
Sym, Ai8's first tool
Ai8's educational tool, called Sym, is being implemented in universities this year. Sym facilitates student learning by leveraging AI agents to assist and evaluate student progress. By gathering and analyzing data on performance and human-computer interactions, Ai8 aims to optimize the learning process and bridge the gap between students' initial abilities and their AI-enhanced learning potential.
A better way to identify and recruit talent
Ai8's vision extends to recruitment, where they aim to reshape the hiring process by identifying and nurturing talent from various backgrounds. Their approach involves spotting potential and offering educational support to individuals, creating a supply chain that contributes to diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplaces.
What types of jobs can be done by AI?
The paper “GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models,” by Open AI, March 2023, explains that, surprisingly, jobs with higher training requirements may be most vulnerable to automation. This trend could reshape the job landscape, raising questions about the future of work. Ai8 envisions a future where learning and work are seamlessly integrated. “We see education into work as a value chain from identifying bright people with aptitude for various different disciplines right into educating them into to practicing some real world applications, maybe in an internship, through to getting that job, through to upskilling, and maybe changing career down the line. If you have the connective tissue to tie all those together, which will be an AI co-pilot (in our case, a Sym), you can start to do some really exciting things. We're going to work with a few global top 10 universities to find out how the current brightest and best work with AI.” Ai8’s data will shed light on the ideal task orchestration needed to quickly reach high standards of work.
Talking with your AI co-pilot and task orchestration
Jonny describes a future where human-machine interaction is driven by verbal, conversational interfaces. The transition from traditional graphical user interfaces to voice-based interfaces is expected to offer a more natural and intuitive way of interacting with AI. Additionally, the web of interactions at work will include human to machine, machine to machine, and human to human.
“In an organization, I may go over to talk with someone in marketing, then speak to someone in product. Then they're speaking with their product team. If every one of those nodes is speaking to their own personal AI, maybe that becomes the plug board interface where we're all having conversations when we log on in the morning with our personal assistant.
(The personal AI) may see that actually Jonathan needs to talk with Emily. He needs to talk with Alan. He needs to talk with Debra in accounts. Then there's this sequence of events of my workflow for that day. My Sym in the backend can go talk with their Syms, get the tasks that are automated done and the remainder pops up and then I start to work on everything else. So it becomes a communication system as much as it becomes a computation system.”
The goal is to create a more efficient and collaborative workspace where humans and AI work together seamlessly to tackle complex projects.
Choosing AI optimism
Jonny emphasizes the positive potential of AI. While there are concerns about AI surpassing human intelligence, he believes that the real promise lies in AI's ability to empower people to learn and work more effectively. He sees AI as a tool for improving access to learning, creating equal opportunities, and transforming the way people build their careers.