Artificial Intelligence: 4 Myths Debunked & Explained
July 14, 2020
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of those things that everyone recognizes as a name, but very few people seem to really know what it does.
It’s something to do with smart robots, thinking for themselves that if we’re not careful enough, could turn into a Terminator sequel, right? Wrong.
Don’t laugh just yet as misconceptions about artificial intelligence go well beyond The Terminator parallel universe. They are nothing more than a product of misinformation about this generational breed of technology.
Today, we’ll address 4 popular myths and give you the cold hard facts about what is true, and what is pure fiction. Let’s begin.
AI Myth #1: Artificial Intelligence is For NASA, Tesla & MIT
AI sounds something out of a space movie and it comes as no surprise that most people think of it as untouchable, as something only the few can access and use.
That couldn’t be further from the truth, as AI has come a long way since its inception, slowly yet steadily becoming a commercial product. Today, AI is found in everyday business tools that can transform your brand.
Here are a few examples:
- Conversica – with its army of Intelligent Virtual Assistants, Conversica helps organizations drive and convert customers at scale. The software can engage with leads, schedule meetings, and turn them into paying customers
- x.ai – your personal scheduling done right. x.ai is integrated to your calendar and emails and takes over the scheduling of your life without your involvement.
- Recorded Future – this is one of the best cybersecurity products on the market. Recorded Future provides real-time tracking, and analysis of massive data sets to detect potential threats and breaches of information.
- Identomat – with KYC being as dynamic of an industry as it is, Identomat has managed to streamline the onboarding process, building a solution that adapts and serves businesses of all industries and sizes.
AI Myth #2: Artificial Intelligence Will Replace People in The Workplace
One of the most common misconceptions about AI is that it will end up taking away jobs from people.
Once again, this is normal as AI does a lot of things that were traditionally performed manually. The truth is that AI will not steal jobs. On the contrary, it will create jobs.
According to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) 2018 Future of Jobs report, AI will be responsible for 133 million new jobs by 2022.
The generational nature of AI technology means that job roles will evolve, not be abolished. People will have to adapt their skill-set and take on more decision-making positions. AI is not an enemy, but a friend.
AI Myth #3: Artificial Intelligence Operates Autonomously
We’re back to the whole “machines taking over the world” argument. Don’t sweat it just yet.
There’s a big difference between automation and completely autonomous machines. AI is great at making sense of large data sets, personalizing them to the user’s habits, and providing a seamless, faster, smarter user experience.
When it comes to matters of critical importance such as healthcare and the military, the human element is still essential. Going back to the previous point, AI is creating jobs for people to create, operate, and interpret it.
The whole idea behind the technology is predicated on the notion that a human will be at the tail-end of the process to make sense of the data and have the last say.
IBM’s Senior Vice President for Watson and Cloud, David Kenny, stated the following in IBM’s Open Letter to Congress on Artificial Intelligence: “Critical decisions require human judgment, morals, and intuition—AI does not change that.”
AI Myth #4: Artificial Intelligence is a Digital Version of The Human Brain
This is a very inaccurate positioning of AI’s nature and capabilities. This misconception stems from the fact that we have frequently used the words “learn” and “think” in our descriptions about the technology.
That is a very free-form way of explaining the complex workings of artificial intelligence but it’s essential to understand the things that separate it from the human brain.
Thankfully, a recent paper in Minds and Machines by David Watson of the Oxford Internet Institute and the Alan Turing Institute comes to the rescue. The paper goes into detail, analyzing the major differences in the level of understanding and perception between AI and the human brain.
Here’s a quote by Watson that summarizes the essence of the paper:
“Algorithms are not ‘just like us’… by anthropomorphizing a statistical model, we implicitly grant it a degree of agency that not only overstates its true abilities but robs us of our own autonomy… It is always humans who choose whether or not to abdicate this authority, to empower some piece of technology to intervene on our behalf. It would be a mistake to presume that this transfer of authority involves a simultaneous absolution of responsibility. It does not.”
AI is no longer the future, it’s the present. It has infiltrated almost every single industry and it’s an essential cog of the business world.
As it becomes more and more prominent it’s good to start familiarizing ourselves with what AI is, what it can do, and how it can ultimately help our business.
Knowledge is power and debunking these myths is not just cool for a watercooler convo but the beginning of an exploration journey regarding AI. Our team here at Identomat are always ready and available to answer any questions you might have on the subject of AI.
Feel free to contact us.