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Artificial Intelligence: Friend or Foe?

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The human mind has been a source of great fascination to the world. Perhaps one of the most complex processing unit, it remains the benchmark in terms of potential capability in an age of lightning fast super computers. Much of this intrigue stems from the fact that a human mind is unique and has the ability to create new things. While much about the human mind is unknown, efforts are being made to replicate it in the form of artificial intelligence or AI. Though still a long way to go from the indistinguishable humanoid cyborgs found in sci-fi movies, great strides have been made. As with any new ground breaking development, the consequences are of great importance.

What we achieve

The evolution of forecasting – photo credit linkedin

One of the greatest perks of current gen artificial intelligence is its ability to make redundant decisions for us thus saving our mental stamina for greater things. A very rudimentary example is that of auto tagging in photos by Facebook. Despite the occasional hiccup, it a simple yet a time saving feature. Similarly, many companies rely on chatbots to provide the basic customer service. It is available 24 hours a day and is quite convenient for both vendors and customers. All this and much more is achieved through the concept of machine learning – the ability of programs to “learn” from a large sample space of real life situations allowing them to alter their behavior accordingly for future instances. Furthermore, AI can be a useful tool to augment our own intelligence as well. It can provide us with the means to realize a revolutionary idea. Calculations and simulations can be carried out through AI. It can help us reach new horizons of discovery. Recently, NASA intends to train AI to explore space and bring us new information about uncharted regions of the universe.

Chatbot – credits vulcanpost.com

The other side

 

Robots and artificial intelligence will kill off five Million jobs by 2020Credits dailymail.com

The greatest criticism and simultaneous fear about AI is its ability to replace us. On a smaller scale, it is already a reality as many are losing their jobs due to being replaced by AI. However, in the grand scheme of things, it is possible that after reaching a certain point in its evolution, it may deduce human race to be expendable. This may feel like a plot for a sci-fi movie but AI can go haywire. This was evident from the Microsoft chatbot Twitter account that had to be shut down as it became a proponent of hate speech. Thankfully, this isn’t the concern of the general public only but some of the brightest minds of our generation like Elon Musk have voiced their concerns.

Eric Schiffer

AI continues its growth by molding itself to our society’s persona and needs. AI may seem frightening or a threat to our existence but at the end of the day remains a man-made creation. It is our responsibility as a race that we ensure that it doesn’t end up being misused for ill means like great inventions of the past. The future is always uncertain but with the right intentions and sound planning, we can put our best foot forward to achieve peace and prosperity down the line.

 



Kostas Deroukakis
Love to search, to try, to give, to learn. Knowledge, is the road for this achievement
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