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ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE | ETHICS | TECHNOLOGY
Towards Ethical AI
Implications of Becoming One with the Machine
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is probably the most disruptive technology of our time; it can alter the way we live and how we think. I believe AI will be the technology which will enable us to “mediate between the fast-paced future which technology is enabling, and the slow-paced human response” as Paul Saffo puts it.
It is natural that with the availability of more computing power and data, AI gears up to dominate the world. And let’s be honest, AI has significantly improved our way of life. I further discuss the importance of AI in another post, if you want to check it out.
The field of AI has exploded exponentially in the last couple of years. No one really had the chance to sit down and consider what life will be like with all these technological advancements around us. How will we control the use, the adoption, and the application of this powerful technology? How can we ensure that every user of AI understands its implications?
So, we are now at crossroads. Should we double down, pedal to the metal, and continue innovating applications of AI or dial down on the innovation and start focusing on setting up proficient regulatory bodies.
But are we even competent enough to do that? To regulate a market, shouldn’t one first be able to comprehend at least the basic structures of the said market?
AI should be Integrated into Education Systems
I believe the future of AI should be focused on democratization of education. In the same way that mathematics and the English language are considered to be ‘must be taught’ subjects, AI should also be highly integrated within the education system from an early age.
AI is already being used for things like self-driving cars and medical diagnoses, but what many people fail to realise is how much AI has already changed their lives. For example, when you use Google Maps to get directions, you are using an AI system. When you ask Siri a question or use Alexa to order something online, you are using an AI system. And when you see an advertisement on Facebook based on your interests and search history, again — you guessed it — you are using an AI system!
These examples might not seem too scary at first glance. But what does this mean for our future? Who is responsible for these systems? Who will make sure that they’re safe and ethical? How do we know that they aren’t being used in unethical ways? These questions are important because they show how much more work needs to be done before we can truly trust the power of AI in our lives.
The young generation of today will be the regulators of tomorrow, and we need them to understand the implications of AI before we continue to adopt it. We must prepare them to be able to make ethical and moral decisions about this technology — and that means giving them the tools they need to do so.
We have seen several instances where AI has made mistakes or shown bias, which has caused many people to question its reliability. If we don’t teach our students how AI works, they may not know how to interpret what they see or hear from these systems in a way that makes sense for them — or even if they should trust their judgment at all!
We want our children to grow up thinking critically about all aspects of their lives, including technology, so they can make informed decisions when it comes time for them to vote on issues like this one.
It is important that we ensure that AI does not become the source of problems for future generations. It is crucial that we lead our young generation into a world of critical thinking and inquiry as they interact with technology.
It’s time to create an external AI board of ethics
The field of Artificial Intelligence is no longer theoretical. It is already being used on a large scale by major search engines, social media platforms, and public services. AI is an important technology to understand and can no longer be ignored.
The same way we have ethical boards set up to decide on legal measures and moral dilemmas, why are we not pushing forward the idea of AI ethical boards? AI is perhaps the most influential factor of our lives in the past couple of years and is responsible for one of the biggest shifts in societal behaviours in human history.
The ethical implications of artificial intelligence are a hot topic in the tech world. As the field of AI grows, we must continue to be mindful of the ethical implications of our work, and one way to do that is to create an external AI board of ethics.
We need to create an external AI board of ethics, who can help ensure that we’re always considering the impact of our work on people. Elect members who are able to maximise the input of the end-user, and make sure they are representative of the general population.
The board members should be educated on the fundamentals of AI so they can understand how it works and what it does; but also make sure they have knowledge about how humans interact with machines and vice versa so they know what will affect people’s behaviour when interacting with machines.
We must be held accountable for our actions when dealing with artificial intelligence — the outcomes of these AI ethics boards should be seriously considered and implemented whenever possible.
I think it can all be summed up pretty simply: AI is going to be a part of our daily lives and we need to start planning for it now. Nothing is certain, but the potential for AI applications in the coming decades is exciting. The reality is that we are going to have a serious responsibility when it comes to designing the AIs of the future. We need to be cognisant of the ethics involved in AI design, and we need to help shape the face of AI going forward.
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