My love/hate relationship with technology has been moving more to the “hate” side of things because of recent developments in the field of artificial intelligence (AI).
OK, “hate” is a bit strong. I really don’t like the word, and it doesn’t apply to anything I actually feel. I do, however, have a somewhat dualist approach to our looming AI future.
On my best days, I see AI as a partner in creating what will become the halcyon days of memory for our children. Yeah, even I can be a little upbeat like that.
On my worst days, I think AI is going to be every nightmare Sci-Fi novel come true. Ben just wrote about some of the fears that people who understand AI have:
The jobs are going bye-bye. They are not coming back.
More and more, human labor will become irrelevant – an overpriced, inefficient commodity.
Efficiency is what the market demands, so efficiency is what it gets.
Given the incentives in front of it in terms of potentially shaving labor costs and streamlining its workflow, why wouldn’t IBM replace its workers with AI, which is already faster, cheaper, and more proficient than humans and will continue to become even more so with time? It’s an exponential growth model.
The “we’re all going to lose our jobs” fear is part of each new technological growth phase. What’s happened thus far is that new jobs were created. AI might be the thing that makes that not happen. Read more…