When artificial intelligence gets real for investors: a timeline

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AI’s recent feats — beating a Go champion, navigating driverless cars, making money for investors — were many decades in the making.

1950: Alan Turing developed the Turing Test for recognizing machine intelligence.

1956: John McCarthy coins “artificial intelligence” at Dartmouth College conference.

1957: Invention of Perceptron, an algorithm that could be trained to classify images.

1964: Computers understand natural language enough to solve algebra word problems.

1968: Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey features intelligent computer HAL 9000.

1979: The Stanford Cart, an autonomous vehicle, navigates across a room full of obstacles.

1982: James Simons starts quant investment firm Renaissance Technologies.

1988: David Shaw founds D.E. Shaw, an early AI adopter among hedge funds.

1990s: AI advances in machine learning, case-based reasoning, data mining, virtual reality.

1997: IBM computer Deep Blue beats world chess champion Garry Kasparov.

1990s: Web crawlers, other AI-based information programs, become Internet mainstays.

1999: Sony AIBO, a robotic pet dog, understands 100 voice commands, learns and matures.

2005: Sebastian Thrun’s Stanford team wins DARPA’s 132-mile driverless car race.

2011: IBM Watson, a system capable of answering questions, wins quiz show Jeopardy.

2012: Google’s self-driving car gets license in Nevada.

2014: Man Group starts using machine learning algorithms to manage client money.

2016: Alphabet’s DeepMind AlphaGo computer program beats Go champion.

2017: AlphaGo Zero learns by playing against itself, beats AlphaGo by 100 games to 0.

2017: Facebook switches entirely to neural networks for 4.5 billion translations a day.

2017: First AI Powered Equity ETF driven by IBM’s Watson computer starts trading.

2017: Two Sigma, a hedge fund that deploys machine learning, crosses $50 billion in assets under management.

2040s: AI could be involved in 99% of investment management, according to Man Group. — Bloomberg