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5 Ways Algorithms are Influencing Your Life

Social Media 

Social Media is the easiest thing in the world. Whether it’s a spare moment in your working day or a quick update before breakfast, your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter feed always seem to have something relevant and interesting to offer. That’s because algorithms and machine learning technology is ever-present on those websites taking note of every click you make and post you look at. It learns about your friends, your interests, and what times of the day you’re most active. Because it is so personalized, it is seamlessly entertaining and as addictive as a Las Vegas slot machine. 

Email and Message 

We send emails and messages every day without thinking; long gone are the days when communication required a phone call or a letter. These emails and messages we send also use algorithms to make them safer and more efficient. Think of Grammarly, a spell check that activates as you compose your email to correct any errors, this tool uses AI and natural language processing. When your email arrives at its destination AI is again used to categorize it and ensure it is not dangerous to open. If it seems suspect, you will be forewarned, or it is sent to Spam. 

Google Search 

If you didn’t know it already, Google Search uses Algorithms and AI to monitor your searches and online behaviour. Its goal is to create an avatar of user data that tells the search engine what ads and content you will be most interested in, such as laboratory billing companies. Those ads that seem to follow you around or that pop up shortly after you’ve searched for a product or place are targeted at you based on your search data. The more data search engines such as Google can acquire, the more personalized they can make your online experience – just how personal it gets is yet to be seen. 

Banking 

Algorithms are heavily involved in securing your accounts and monitoring them for inconsistencies. No human personnel could do this for you with the complexities of the digital world. If you deposit a check by scanning it with your phone or buy an item at an unfamiliar location, AI will notice the activity and send a message to you on a smartphone and email to check you are aware of the transaction. With so many hackers and Internet fraudsters around, this AI is particularly useful in keeping your money and bank accounts secure.

Online Shopping 

Almost everyone who uses the Internet has used Amazon at one time or another to purchase a book or gift conveniently. The online shopping giant is not just a successful platform; it’s an AI pioneer with algorithms that are superbly efficient at identifying and presenting items to you that you are likely to buy next. Based on previous purchases and purchases made by similar shoppers, Amazon is so confident in its algorithms to deliver results that it will ship items in shoppers’ direction before they have even decided to buy them. This algorithm is called ‘anticipatory shipping.’ 

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