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AI (artificial intelligence) technology is getting better and better quickly, and it is changing many parts of modern life.
But some experts worry that it could be used for bad things and could put jobs at risk.
What is AI and How does it Work?
AI makes it possible for a computer to act and reply almost like a person.
Computers can be given a lot of data and taught to find patterns in it so they can guess, solve problems, and even learn from their own mistakes.
AI also uses algorithms, which are lists of rules that must be done in the right order to finish a job.
Siri and Alexa, which can be managed by voice, are made possible by this technology. It lets Spotify, YouTube, and BBC iPlayer guess what you might want to listen to next. It also helps Facebook and Twitter decide which social media posts to show users.
AI lets Amazon look at what customers buy and figure out what they might want to buy next. The company also uses AI to get rid of fake reviews.
What are ChatGPT and Snapchat’s My AI?
ChatGPT and Snapchat My AI are two powerful apps that use AI and have gained a lot of attention in the past few months.
They show what is known as generative AI.
This finds patterns and structures in huge amounts of source data and uses them to make new, original content that seems like it was made by a person.
The AI works with a chatbot, which is a computer program that “talks” to human users through text.
The apps can tell stories, answer questions, and write computer code.
But both programs sometimes give users wrong answers and can repeat the biases in their source material, like sexism or racism.
Why do Critics fear AI could be Dangerous?
Experts have warned that AI’s rapid growth could be dangerous because there aren’t many rules about how it can be used. Some people have even said that work on AI should stop.
Many people think of Geoffrey Hinton as one of the “godfathers” of artificial intelligence. In May, he quit his job at Google and warned that AI robots could soon be smarter than humans.
Later that month, the Center for AI Safety in the US released a statement that was backed by dozens of top tech experts.
They say that AI could be used to spread false information, which could make society less stable. People say that the worst thing that could happen is that machines become so smart that they take over and kill everyone.
But Margrethe Vestager, who is in charge of tech for the EU, told the BBC that AI’s ability to make bias or discrimination worse was a bigger worry.
She is especially worried about how AI could be used to make decisions that affect people’s lives, like whether or not they get a loan. She also says that there is “definitely a risk” that AI could be used to sway elections.
Others, like tech pioneer Martha Lane Fox, say that we shouldn’t get “too hysterical” about AI and that we should have a more reasonable talk about what it can do.
What Rules are in Place at the Moment about AI?
Governments all over the world are trying to figure out how to control AI.
Members of the European Parliament just voted in favor of the EU’s planned Artificial Intelligence Act, which will set up a strict legal framework for AI that companies would have to follow.
Margrethe Vestager says that AI needs “guardrails” to stop the biggest risks it poses.
The law, which is scheduled to go into effect in 2025, divides AI applications into groups based on how dangerous they are to consumers. For example, AI-powered video games or spam filters are in the lowest risk group.
The most strict controls would be put on systems that are used to judge credit scores or decide who can live where.
In the UK, where the government laid out its plans for the future of AI in March, these rules will not be used.
It said that there would be no need for a new AI monitor and that it would be the job of already existing groups to keep an eye on AI.
But Ms. Vestager says that AI control needs to be a “global affair” and that she wants to build a consensus among “like-minded” countries.
US lawmakers have also asked if the voluntary rules that are already in place are good enough.
In the meantime, China wants companies to let people know when they use an AI algorithm.
Which Jobs are at Risk because of AI?
Although AI has the potential to revolutionize the workplace, it is unclear which positions it might replace.
According to a recent research by the investment bank Goldman Sachs, when some processes and job functions are automated, AI might eventually replace the equivalent of 300 million full-time jobs globally. That is equivalent to 25% of all existing human labor in the US and Europe.
The report listed a number of professions and businesses that could be impacted, including management, law, architecture, and administrative positions.
However, it also identified other significant potential advantages and projected that the use of AI could boost the world GDP by 7%.
AI is already being utilized in several fields of science and health, with researchers utilizing it to create new drugs and doctors using it to assist detect breast cancer.