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    AI 2041 — the dance between artificial intelligence and human society

    Newsletter: FT Weekend

    The Luddite movement claimed a place in history when they replaced the workforce and broke textile looms. But there were quiet supporters who were unaware of the serious impact they had on the Industrial Revolution: the masses of people who sat down and made technology change the world.

    Now, on the brink of another revolution caused by artificial intelligence, AI guru and former Google head of China, Kai-Fu Lee, now has the destructive potential of inferrable machines. Warn that society needs to be prepared, learn like humans and solve problems.

    AI 2041 Introducing a “roadmap for the coming decades” that shows how AI will evolve by combining an essay written by Lee with a short story written by Chinese science fiction rising star Chen Qiufan. Chen tells Lee’s vision into ten stories set around the world, from Indian teens fighting discriminatory algorithms for love to evil German scientists on the verge of unleashing a quantum slaughter. Convert.

    This book is full of interesting insights on how the industry can leverage intelligent machines. Health checks no longer require human contact, and smart toilets analyze patient excrement without the need to handle test tubes. Waiters love adventure, providing culinary recommendations based on customer favorite meal records.

    The treatise is simple. AI has good and evil abilities, but humans, not machines, are responsible for determining their end use. This book warns readers to protect themselves from the indifference that can easily take root if we speculate that we have lost the ability to shape the world by giving intelligence to machines. “We are masters of fate, and the technological revolution will never change that,” Lee wrote.

    The author presents a list of steps governments and businesses should take to reflect the state of AI today and protect against the negative externalities of technology, to get clues about what the future holds.

    However, this book does not reflect the most obvious examples of its harmful applications. No mention is made of the role played by major Chinese AI companies in establishing Chinese AI. Extensive monitoring status — Not surprising given Lee’s financial interests in this matter.

    His venture capital firm Sinovation was an early investor in Megvii, whose face recognition technology is being used by Chinese security services to implement strict population control measures.New York Times Report in 2019 Megvii’s AI has been trained to identify Uighur Muslims, allowing police to track their movements in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region. The company denies that its technology is being used to violate human rights.

    Chen’s short story AI 2041 It also lacks the dark and witty introspection that makes his previous work very compelling. The writer was notorious for his 2011 short story. Lijiang fishA brilliantly crafted story of a burnt-out office worker who often goes to holiday resorts when he was young to escape the pain of his digitized presence. The protagonist finds everything in the resort fake and falls into despair. This includes holographic fish, which he presumed to be the only trace of real life.

    But the story AI 2041 It is designed to be subordinate to the purpose of the book, which is to educate its readers. Awkward explanations about AI get caught up in dialogue because there are too few words left for a fast-paced story.

    For every flaw in this book, we have successfully solved the AI ​​mystery and provided a helpful caution guide. Some of the warnings about the dangerous externalities of AI are well known. In Nigeria in 2041, a deepfake video of a popular person appearing to spew vitreous propaganda exacerbates tensions between Igbos and Yoruba.Jordan Peele, Director Get out, Released in 2018 video Machine-generated Barack Obama calls Donald Trump a “perfect and perfect dip sit”, showing that the human eye can no longer distinguish between fact and fiction.

    But if technology causes a problem, it also has a solution. Lee predicts that regulations will require social media sites to host anti-counterfeiting software to warn users about counterfeit content.

    “In the story of AI and humans, a correct understanding of the dance between artificial intelligence and human society will arguably be the only greatest achievement in human history,” Lee declares.

    AI will also be an eternal force. A quicker medical diagnosis saves lives. Repetitive tasks, from stacking shelves to processing data, are performed by the machine, freeing workers for more creative tasks. AI 2041 A manifesto for finding the best with this technology. It is up to everyone, including the author of this book, to put that lesson into practice.

    AI: 2041 10 Visions for Our Future Kai-Fu Lee and Chen Qiufan, Currency, $ 30 / WH Allen, £ 14.99, 480 pages

    Eleanor Olcott is a Chinese technical reporter for FT

    Join Facebook’s online book group. FT Books Café

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