Google's DeepMind already proved it could beat a Go world champion, and it's AI has even been used to cut the company's energy costs. So what's next for the technology? How about improving the way we treat cancer?
DeepMind recently announced a partnership with the Radiotherapy Department at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. The department provides world-leading cancer treatment, but there's one area in particular where Google's AI could help speed up the process.
When it comes to certain types of cancer in areas like the head and neck doctors need to plan carefully to avoid damaging important organs and body parts. The process, called segmentation, can take four hours to complete. DeepMind says it can get that down to just one hour.
To pull this off Google's AI would analyze anonymous medical files from 700 former cancer patients. That should be enough to tell the company if machine learning will work in this situation.
If it succeeds, doctors will have a lot more time to focus on patient care and research. The same AI could also potentially be used in other cancer treatments, bringing Google one step closer to its previously stated goal of curing disease and death with technology.