Whenever talk turns to artificial intelligence (AI) and robots, the debate usually includes a discussion on whether or not there will be a robot uprising that will eventually exterminate the human population.
According to business analyst group Gartner, there will be absolutely nothing to worry about – and the movies are at least partly to blame for stoking fears that there is.
“Hollywood has a lot to answer for (when it comes to a robot uprising). We are nowhere near the capabilities and we won’t be for at least the next fifty years. It just isn’t going to happen,” said Gartner analyst Stephen Prentice.
He explained that what you really get when designing robots is actually a synthetic intelligence, and not artificial intelligence.
“They will always be a human invention, and there will always be an ‘off’ button. They won’t destroy humans, as we are perfectly capable of doing it ourselves,” he said.
That also brings on the question if robots will be taken human jobs in the future, leaving many jobless.
Prentice believes that robots will be taking human jobs in the future, but said in the same breath that new jobs will be created to replace the ones lost. “Technology has been taking or replacing human jobs since the dawn of technology, and this will be no different.”
Some new jobs that could be created include AI developers, and a lot of smart systems will need to be fixed. “The human is still the best general purpose worker out there.”
According to Prentice, trainers and therapist won’t be replaced by robots, as those jobs are some of the most secure when AI becomes more prevalent in the world. What could also happen, is that robot will be used to help less skilled workers complete more complex tasks.
Robots or mechanical creations won’t be out of control, as we will have to give them context for which they operate in, said Prentice. He added that it will only start to become a problem when things are fully automated.
But fully automated systems will be necessary for applications that require speed, like alerting authorities to an emergency.
Like it or not, Prentice believes that AI, even at its most trivial level, will be entering our lives more from now on out.
How we teach these robots and what context we give them, that will be the key.
[Image – CC by 2.0/Mark Strozier]