Before listening to cries that the robots are going to take over, look at what artificial intelligence technology can do for humanity. Artificial intelligence – the ability of a computer or machine to think and learn – is an ongoing and accelerating trend. While the technology may be brand new, the potential fears (and opportunities) happen in nearly every new technological innovation.
Take electricity, for instance.
Like artificial intelligence (AI), electrification let machines replace many kinds of human labor and opened the door to innovations previously not thought possible, such as the lightbulb. And like AI, it was a divisive issue of its time.
Some people were very excited about having light after dark and others thought it would come out of the walls and kill you. Now, that fear might seem silly, but in truth, electricity is dangerous, but not because it can come out from the walls.
Now, with AI is in its infancy, we’re again seeing this trend: some people feel it will bring out our greatest feats, and others feel it will bring about our demise.
Let the data do the talking
Depending on where you get your information, artificial intelligence will either unite or destroy us.
But we think the case for unite is far stronger than the case for divide. Take a global tech giant, Microsoft, for example.
The image below is a link to a video from Microsoft’s Seeing AI that helps a blind person navigate life. This is particularly important at the moment when diversity in the workplace is such a hot topic. But many often limit the topic to the traditional categories.
By developing a product with someone who is blind, Microsoft not only created a more inclusive workplace, they created a more inclusive product.
Here’s the issue. The same company created a chatbot in 2016 and released it to the public. Within 24 hours, the chatbot was racist, sexist and essentially biased at all levels.