Should we be scared of AI?
Anyone who has watched cult classic films such as The Matrix and Ex-Machina will undoubtedly have contemplated just how close to reality these storylines could become. Could we really see a day when computers develop real emotions or gain enough intelligence and power to take over the world? There are certainly people out there who think so. So, should we be worried?
AI is advancing at a rapid pace. That is something we can say for sure. Whilst it has taken almost 60 years to progress from the room-sized calculators of the 1960s to today’s micro-sized processors, the rate of technological development has most definitely accelerated in recent years. And it is not just impacting the way we do business but changing the way we live our lives. For example, Google and Amazon have applied AI and intelligent use of technology to bring us more relevant, personalized experiences and new services that we never knew we needed. Most people would accept that this has been a highly practical and convenient application of AI.
What is it that worries us most about AI?
And yet, there are still concerns that AI could become an unstoppable force in the future. What is driving these concerns? According to an article in Forbes, the fears around AI seem to stem from a few common causes: general anxiety about machine learning super-intelligence, the fear of mass unemployment, and general concern and caution regarding new technology.
The fear of mass-unemployment
This is not a new concern – for decades, many people have been afraid of machines taking over our jobs and leaving us without work. It’s true that many jobs of the past, particularly those with very manual tasks, have been replaced with more automated processes. But this hasn’t always led to mass unemployment. Take, for example, the printing industry. We once had people creating printing plates and manually managing pre-press activities. Most printers now use computers and machines to automate the process, bringing greater efficiency and cost savings to print production. Whilst some jobs have disappeared, new ones have been created in their places, such as machine programming, maintenance, and quality control. Technology has enhanced the industry, but computers are certainly not independent enough to run the show.
Machine learning super-intelligence
One of the greatest fears around AI is that it will one day become more powerful and intelligent than humans, and our brains will not be able to keep up with its advancement. AI is becoming more intelligent by the day. There is a great deal of investment into this growing technology, with organizations, governments, and even the military vying to create a competitive advantage through AI technology. Whilst deep-learning AI uses neural networks to replicate human-like behaviors such as learning and rationalizing, it does not yet have more complex intellectual abilities such as the emotional intelligence or instinct that humans possess. Take, for example, self-driving cars – the impressive AI technology behind these clever vehicles are bringing new possibilities for the vehicle industry and could well change the way we travel in the future. However, as those who drive will know, one of the critical driving skills is having an instinct for what other drivers on the road might do. This is something that self-driving cars have yet to master, meaning they are still prone to accidents.
It’s examples like this that demonstrate that even the most intelligent AI computers still need human input to operate most effectively. This means that they are not likely to take over the world just yet. But what we can say is that they bring a level of analytical intelligence far superior to any human brain, both in capacity and speed. So, blending the abilities of humans and machine learning can bring some incredible results.
Fear of technological advancement
Much of the fear in AI technology derives from the fear of the unknown. The pace of change and progress means that our world is developing in a way that makes many people feel uncomfortable and out of control. The fear of change has always been a challenge for humankind. It can take us years or even decades to feel genuinely at ease with such substantial developments. But they do become part of our way of life in the end. Just imagine if Henry T Ford had bowed to the fears of many regarding his newly invented car. Perhaps the vehicle industry wouldn’t have been born. An industry that has brought a host of employment opportunities, both within car production and via associated sectors.Not to mention the benefits of our reliable road infrastructures and the convenience and ease of travel we enjoy today.
AI is enhancing the way we live and work. It is part of our future, and accepting it will help us progress and develop as a society. We are already adapting to new ways of working and living, and once ‘worrying’ changes will soon become the norm. We may not always be able to control change, but we can embrace it. AI can bring exciting new developments that make our world better if we let it – that is something we can control.
About Cloudapps deep learning AI
Cloudapps is the first and only provider of ‘Deep Learning’ powered AI in the CRM sector.
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If you would like to understand how our technology could enhance the work of your data scientist and bring new insights to your sales function, contact us today.