The Different Kinds of AI

Uwais Iqbal2022-11-01

AI isn’t just one thing. There are different kinds of AI that help to break down what AI can do.

The Two Kinds of AI

A common categorisation of the different kinds of AI is based on what the AI system is capable of doing. Researchers usually break AI down into two kinds:

  1. Strong AI
  2. Weak AI

Strong AI

Strong AI refers to an AI system which has reached a level of human intelligence. The system can learn, perceive, understand, and function completely like a human being.

At the moment, we haven’t developed such systems so Strong AI is still something purely theoretical. Many researchers are sceptical as to whether Strong AI systems are even possible. Strong AI is also known as General AI or Artificial General intelligence (AGI).

Weak AI

Weak AI refers to an AI system that can perform a specific and precise task like extracting a field from a document or clustering a set of documents. The AI systems we have today are all examples of Weak AI. Weak AI is also known as Narrow AI.

Will AI ever replace lawyers?

The claim that “AI will replace lawyers” certainly grabs attention and is great for headlines. However, it's a claim about Strong AI. Strong AI systems are still a theoretical estimation - we don’t know if we’ll ever get to that point. It’s fair to say that lawyers are still around today and will be around forever more.

Legal AI

AI can be useful in the legal domain in the form of Weak AI. With a focus on specific tasks, AI systems can be developed to help scale expertise, create efficiencies and save associates from hours of gruelling grunt work.