3 major types of artificial intelligence systems

3 Major Types of Artificial Intelligence Systems

Deriving concepts from the management literature, researchers Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein introduced the three types of artificial intelligence systems. These are analytical AI, human-inspired AI, and humanized AI.

Kaplan and Haenlein: The Three Types of AI Systems

1. Analytical Artificial Intelligence

One of the three types of artificial intelligence systems presented by Kaplan and Haenlein is called analytical AI. It has characteristics consistent with cognitive intelligence. As a backgrounder, cognition is defined as the process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought, experience, and the senses.

In artificial intelligence, analytical AI mimics cognitive intelligence because it involves the generation of a cognitive representation of the world, as well as the use of learning based on past experience to inform future decisions. A prime example of this AI system is machine learning.

Specific applications of analytical AI include face and image detection systems, autonomous vehicles, fraud detection, and intelligent assistance, among others. Note that analytical AI is the most commonly deployed among the three types of artificial intelligence systems.

2. Human-Inspired Artificial Intelligence

Human-inspired AI is an AI system that combines elements of cognitive intelligence and emotional intelligence. Thus, aside from generating a cognitive representation of the world and using learning from past experience to inform future decisions, this system processes and analyzes human emotions, and uses them in decision-making.

One application of a human-inspired AI centers on assessing human emotion for customer service, as well as recruitment and assessment purposes. The system would include facial recognition or voice analysis mechanisms to look for cues such as facial expressions or patterns in intonations to determine emotions.

Walmart has installed similar systems in some of its stores to identify unhappy and frustrated customers and provide suitable customer care response. Affectiva, a company founded at the MIT Media Lab, has developed emotion recognition technology capable of recognizing joy, surprise, and anger, among others using facial recognition and biometrics systems.

3. Humanized Artificial Intelligence

Another type of artificial intelligence system is called humanized AI. It has characteristics of the two previous AI systems while factoring in social intelligence in its capabilities. The primary purpose of this system is to enable self-conscious and self-aware machine-to-human and machine-to-machine interactions.

Humanized AI is still not available today due to limitations in technology and ongoing improvements in AI research. Once fully realized, the primary application of this AI system centers on autonomous and self-aware virtual and mechanized assistants.

Some of the imagined examples of a humanized AI system include virtual agents dealing with customer concerns or inquiries, computer-powered autonomous teachers and moderators, and systems for psychologically training individuals.


  • Kaplan, A. and Haenlein, M. 2019. “Siri, Siri, In My Hand: Who is the Fairest in the Land? On the Interpretations, Illustrations, and Implications of Artificial Intelligence.” Business Horizons. 62(1): 15-25. DOI: 10.1016/j.bushor.2018.08.004