Clearing up misconceptions about artificial intelligence

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Posted on: July 10, 2020 5:52 pm EDT

Some common ideas about what AI can do are completely misguided

As time goes by, more companies are starting to work along with big data, automation and neural network technologies brought about by artificial intelligence (AI) due to the many – and unprecedented – potential applications that AI could have. This technology tends to generate a lot of noise that can turn into misconceptions and, for some people, AI is bad news because they tend to mischaracterize or misunderstand what it is. However, it is a technology with unlimited potential that deserves proper recognition.

The first argument from opponents is that AI has come to take over jobs currently performed by humans. This is not a lie, automation is one of the big changes AI is bringing in, but it is applied to a number of certain low-skill jobs, which is something that other technologies have done before by replacing humans with machines to tackle the most repetitive tasks. What is not being considered is that the automation of processes can bring new opportunities for humans to work on new tasks and even create more jobs.

The second misconception is actually an untruth that has been accepted as fact. AI does not work exactly like a human brain. Actually, today’s advancements are very simple if compared to what a whole human brain can do. Even though there is evidence of AI-powered robots beating humans in a game of chess – or even poker – AI cannot understand its surroundings nor learn from the environment in the same way humans can.

The belief that AI algorithms are neutral and objective processes is another of the misconceptions among people who don’t understand what it is. AI is neither objective nor neutral, and it is only as good as the people or the company creating that machine are. This means that the quality and trustworthiness of AI can vary a lot depending on where it was created – and for what purpose.