Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing how the world runs. With Silicon Valley giants ramping up their AI research investments, and businesses — from process manufacturing and medical science to technology and finance — drawing off AI talent, the turn of the century technology is leaving lasting footprints in every sector.
AI will contribute to around USD 13 trillion to the world economy by 2030. (McKinsey Report)
The question for most of the aspirants seeking to become AI Engineers is: how to get started? Without a doubt, computer science is the best-positioned discipline to give you the edge.
Role of Computer Scientists in AI
While ‘Data Analyst’ is the top job up for grabs for professionals working in the field of AI and Big Data, the professionals who solely focus on the development of AI (like an AI Engineer) are typically computer scientists.
Describing a computer scientist’s work in AI, Bethany Edmunds, Associated Dean at Khoury College of Computer Science says,
There is always someone developing a faster and stronger machine. That someone who is pushing the boundaries of the discipline is most likely a computer scientist.
If you are looking to develop algorithms and become an AI professional, here is a quick roundabout of how computer science can help you, the education you must pursue, AI jobs you can get, and career outlook.
Where do AI Computer Scientists work?
The brightest lot is usually grabbed in quick time by tech industry behemoths.
AI jobs require advanced level computer science skills typically possessed by AI professionals or doctorate holders in the field of AI.
Irrespective of the sector or industry they find themselves in — healthcare, education, private companies, public organizations, military, or others — they are often involved in either research activities aimed at developing the field, or they are involved in product-building such as consumer goods (household robots, etc.).
A quick compilation of the types of AI careers led by Computer scientists:
- Software developer
- Software analyst
- Algorithm specialist
- AI engineer
- Computer scientist
- Computer engineer
- Manufacturing and electrical engineer
- Surgical technician working in robotics
- Graphic art designer and architect
- Digital musician
- Medical professional working with restoration devices (prosthetics, limbs, etc.)
- Military and aviation electrician (working with drones, armaments, simulators)
- Research scientist
- AI consultant
What are their responsibilities?
AI engineers or computer scientists specializing in AI are hired in businesses for financial modeling, fraud detection, among other purposes. In universities and private industries who undertake research work, computer scientists are the brains behind. They are engaged in inventions, discoveries, perfecting algorithms, and robotics.
They essentially apply their knowledge and rules to any issue that can be solved by algorithms. Their efforts make stock trading programs and robotic surgeries possible.
A lot usually depends on their specialization and their role in the industry. Overall one would work around:
✔️Advancing data systems
✔️ Developing new software
✔️Overseeing ethics and accountability
What should you study to become an AI Engineer?
Core Artificial Intelligence jobs, which go beyond Big Data domains, require advanced know-how in computer science, along with basic knowledge of mathematics, physics, and logic.
Due to the need for a background in not only statistics but also the mathematical theory and others, a master’s or/and Ph.D. is highly sought for research roles.
You can trail the following trajectory:
👉 In Undergraduate, choose computer science and familiarize yourself with AI concepts such as neural networks, machine classification, and expert systems, among other things.
👉 In Graduate school, you can specialize in AI or computer science with a focus on AI. In-depth knowledge in AI will introduce you to other subject fields requirements for AI such as Maths, Statistics, Physics, etc.
👉In Ph.D., you can join a group project on AI or opt for a research area of your interest in the field of AI.
From time to time in your career, you can gain a certifying status by choosing one of the top AI certifications. It will keep you the latest and in touch with the industry practices followed by top-level AI professionals.
Career Outlook of an AI Computer Scientist
New York Times estimates that the topmost AI researchers can make as much as USD 1,000,000 and upward annually, with lower-level AI engineers and other AI professionals making around USD 300,000 and USD 500,000 annually.
The demand for AI experts is high and it’s rising. Are you ready to ride the AI wave?