What is Artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence is the Simulation of human intelligence in machines. Machines attempt to mimic human thought and action. This can be in the form of search engines, chatbots, voice assistants like SIRI, even the Netflix recommendations you see after watching a few movies. Now we see advancements like Chat GPT and AI image generators. The scary thing is, as far as the technology has already come, AI is still in its infancy.

The concept of AI has its roots in Science Fiction dating back to the 1950s. Like many concepts in Sci-Fi that couldn’t be realised at the time it is starting to take shape now, 70 years later. The term itself was coined in 1956, but it wasn’t until 1970 when the first program capable of solving algebraic equations was made, that we could say real progress in this field had started. Progressions from there included Chess game (1990) ImageNet (Remember that from 2007?) and the Google driverless car (2009). Basically whether you realise it or not you’ve probably been using AI for some time now without even realising it.

Can AI turn Evil?

At this point in time with the technology the way it is, AI can’t just *Turn* evil. AI is a program or software produced by humans. Any “Evil Intent” attributed to AI is more to do with the intent of the human(s) programming it rather than the software gaining some sense of self awareness. This means that yes, it can do evil things as its programmed to, but the software itself can’t yet turn evil.

When I say “yet”, we ABSOLUTELY need to make sure AI is programmed and released in line with the goals of humanity in mind, not just the wants of a few. This is set to become a huge moral issue in the coming years. Does that mean it can’t become “Self Aware” or “Evil” in the future? Only time will tell with that.

Further more to this, what is evil Anyway? Are the features in say “TikTok” that keep showing us videos it knows we like, that keep us addicted to the platform “Evil”? Where to we draw the line at free choice and addiction to online services? It could sound like a minor issue to some but think how much time social media is taking out of our lives as a whole due to this features. How much money is AI shopping carts taking out of our collective pockets? What about more sinister AI impersonations that are putting people’s faces on scam and explicit videos. This really has the potential to wreck people’s lives in a much faster way than it did previously. Do we have an obligation to outlaw stuff like this or punish those caught using it improperly?

The other issue is does it really matter whether the software turned evil or the users programmed it that way to those that have been hurt? To those people, in many cases once the damage is done, semantics are irrelevant.

We’ve already seen one example of a chat bot in twitter starting to spew racist comments after “learning” from the site users and their comments. This was in 2016. This wasn’t the bot turning evil but not performing properly due to the data that it used to “learn” from.


INACCURATE DATA – if the data fed into an AI tool is faulty we can only expect faulty results. This is especially true for big data, statistics and what not. THE PROGRAMMERS involved in the development will play a huge part. Again this is similar the the data accuracy as an AI program will only be as good as the people programming it. is your company or department relying on AI produced data or stats to make important business decisions? Remember: AI is driven by data and is only as good as the data going into it.

BREAK DOWN OF CUSTOMER TRUST – do the general public trust AI to give them the data / information needed? Do your customers trust it? Do you trust the programmers behind the software you are using to have included the relevant data to to best serve your customers? Or will it better than having half trained employees and even build trust?

ADDICTIVENESS – the AI in social media / online content that feeds us content it determines we want to see is contributing in a large way to social media addiction. THis is especially an issue surrounding our kids on platforms such as “TikTok into the social media algorithms.

JOBS WILL BE AT RISK – Is your job at risk with the rise of AI? I can assure you many jobs will be at risk. This will include lower level webdesigners (like me), maybe statistiicans, definitley call centre workers will loose jobs. Will this expand to doctors and statisticians (and even other professionals) as the programming gets more and more advanced? Especially with visual recognition getting better and better by the minute. Will the jobs created by AI come anywhere near replacing these jobs?

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