Some of the best-known applications for artificial intelligence, or AI, range from autonomous vehicles to finance to medical diagnosis. But AI is rapidly expanding to every sector of the economy, including fashion. For a growing number of fashion companies, AI is already transforming the methods used to predict trends, create products and interact with suppliers and customers. Not surprisingly, AI advances raise unique new legal questions, chiefly in the realm of intellectual property and privacy.
What is AI?
Broadly defined, AI is computer technology that aims to simulate intelligent human behavior, or to perform cognitive tasks that ordinarily require human intelligence. The development of “strong AI” attempts to replicate human reasoning as closely as possible or even to create sentient machines (think Hal in 2001: A Space Odyssey), while “weak AI” focuses on performing specific tasks that require capabilities similar to human cognition (think customer service chatbots that can answer a limited range of questions). Branches of AI include “machine learning” and “deep learning,” which use algorithms to parse huge volumes of data to draw inferences and make predictions.
AI in the Fashion Industry
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