• Michelle Hebert

Studies find computers are starting to be better at reading than humans

A number of artificial intelligence programs beat humans on a Stanford University reading comprehension test. Alibaba (BABA) and Microsoft (MSFT) created the programs that beat the humans, multiple sources reported. The program was invented by experts of artificial intelligence at Stanford University; the main purpose of the program is to measure computers' growing reading abilities.

Multiple sources reported that Microsoft’s program scored an 82.650, and Alibaba’s program scored an 82.44. Alibaba’s score was determined first, and then Microsoft’s score was calculated. The human competitors scored an 82.304, multiple sources also reported.

The test is made up of questions about Wikipedia articles. On Jan. 11, 2018, Alibaba was given the test, and a day later, Microsoft took the test, CNN reported.

On Monday, Jan. 15, 2018, Alibaba commented on the results: "This is the first time that a machine has outperformed humans on such a test," according to CNN.

Andrew Pickup, a spokesman for Microsoft, stated, "These kinds of tests are certainly useful benchmarks for how far along the AI journey we may be."

“Luo Si, the chief scientist of natural language processing at the Chinese company's AI research group, called the milestone ‘a great honor’ but also acknowledged that it will likely lead to a significant number of workers losing their jobs to machines,” CNN reported.