Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming very real—and at an exponentially faster rate. Moreover, those organizations that leverage AI in sync with those Hard Trends and Soft Trends that are shaping the future stand to make the most of its extraordinary potential.

Anticipating Societal Shifts and Civil Unrest Using Artificial Intelligence

On one level, artificial intelligence is poised to help anticipate and address such critical issues as cybersecurity, civil unrest and even outright acts of terrorism. For example, using technology such as automated smart detection, officials at the recent Olympics in Rio were successful in maintaining security in a wide array of venues and locations.

Closer to home, the Central Intelligence Agency’s deputy director for digital innovation Andrew Hallman recently addressed the issue of anticipatory intelligence at an event hosted by the government and technology website NextGov. Hallman spoke of the agency’s greatly improved ability to predict potentially dangerous events days before they actually occurred. 

“We have, in some instances, been able to improve our forecast to the point of being able to anticipate the development of social unrest and societal instability—some, I think, as near as three to five days out,” he said.

Anticipatory Opportunities Beyond Safety

Organizations that identify and leverage the opportunity afforded by artificial intelligence and security matters stand to profit handsomely in the future. But the promise of AI isn’t limited to issues of public safety.

It’s no great revelation that consumers have always been and always will be hungry for greater convenience and faster results. Apps are decidedly handy and easy to use, but shoppers are growing tired of having to shift from one app to another, looking for more consolidated and faster means to purchase goods and services.  Read more about Seamless Consumer Experiences..

Consider: How might a platform be received that not only offered, in effect, the ultimate in “one-stop shopping” but, through artificial intelligence, further streamlined the experience by predicting what consumers would find appealing, no matter if it’s an upcoming birthday or the Christmas holidays? What sort of game-changing opportunity could that sort of real-time knowledge and availability offer those organizations that anticipate what their customers want and when they want it?

It’s happening already. On the surface, the semi-autonomous driving capacity of Tesla cars may seem both cool and useful, but so, too, is the vehicle’s capacity to gather detailed driving information about routes and destinations to increase the accuracy of the systems in each car as well as to anticipate the user’s future needs and interests.

Major players are increasingly tuning in to the potential of artificial intelligence. Corporate giants like Google, IBM, Facebook, Apple and Salesforce are racing to acquire private AI companies, with Samsung emerging as a new entrant this month with its acquisition of startup Viv Labs, which is developing a Siri-like AI assistant. And it would be foolish to take your eye off of Amazon and its AI applications. Roughly 140 private companies working to advance artificial intelligence technologies have been acquired since 2011, with over 40 acquisitions taking place in 2016 alone.

They all see the game-changing opportunities afforded by AI. What about you and your organization? Will you wait and react, or will you use the hard trend of AI to anticipate and innovate? The choice is yours.

See Daniel Burrus’ approach to accurately forecasting the future in this short clip.

Daniel Burrus has been trusted by leaders from Fortune 500 companies, the Pentagon and heads of State– to deliver a message that accurately predicts future trends and identifies game changing opportunities before the competition. See some of Dan’s Recent Keynote Speeches below: