Summary: The decisions that we make now and in the near future will set the tone for the rest of the decade including how artificial intelligence (AI) may develop and how we will use it. It will require enlightened leadership to maximize the benefit for human society.
Original author and publication date: Imtiaz Adam – June 21, 2021
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: We (humans) are still paying the not-so-good consequences of the previous Benightment (the one that began in Europe around the 18th century.) Are we so sure AI will lead us to a new, better Benightment?
From the article:
This article is focused on providing a moment of reflection in terms of where we are and where we are going from a policy and philosophical perspective and to serve as a prelude to a more technical article on the next generation of AI that will follow.
Positive use case potential for AI includes the fight against Covid -19. For example The Lancet published an article authored by Zhou et al. entitled “Artificial Intelligence in COVID-19 drug repurposing” and state that ” In this Review, we introduce guidelines on how to use AI for accelerating drug repurposing or repositioning, for which AI approaches are not just formidable but are also necessary. We discuss how to use AI models in precision medicine, and as an example, how AI models can accelerate COVID-19 drug repurposing.”
Another example is provided by Brandon Vigliarolo MIT develops Machine Learning model to quicken release of COVID-19 vaccine and states that “Researchers from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) have developed a new combinatorial machine learning system that could both decrease research time needed for a COVID-19 vaccine and make it more effective, researchers said. “
“The platform, called OptiVax, focuses on developing peptide vaccines, which are a different approach from common whole virus, DNA, and RNA vaccines currently among the more than 100 vaccines in development.”
The Types of AI
We’ve tended to focus on the difference between Narrow AI and Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), albeit there is an intermediate step in between that we will be the focus of AI research in the 2020s. For a definition of AI, Machine Learning and Deep Learning see the Article on this hyperlink.
In order to truly realise the potential of AI this decade in these sectors we’ll need to deploy techniques such as Federated Learning with Differential Privacy and Broad AI.
However, just as important is the people element. We’ll need to invest in people and skills across the education system and workforce.
This means that our political and organisational leaders enable sufficient investment to develop the human talent needed and to enable AI and other emerging technologies to address some of the crucial issues that we as humanity face going forwards. It will require an enlightened approach by our political and policy leaders to enable a transition to Industry 4.0.
The Covid-19 crisis has resulted in both human suffering and also economic damage. Our leaders will need to consider policies to enable GDP and employment growth whilst also taking into account the need to combat pollution and move away from the business as usual model that perhaps played a role in our world being in its current state.
I hope that 2021 will be a time of recovery and enlightenment for all, wherever you maybe in the world and that we will experience the leadership and vision to steer us beyond the Covid crisis and in the direction for applying AI for productive use cases across the economy to also heel the economic damage that has been caused and also to improve living standards and healthcare for many around the world. The future is in our own hands and the decisions that we take now and in the near future will determine our future for many years ahead. One hopes that we will emerge next year into a new period enlightenment with Data Science and next generation technology being used in ways that improve our quality of life and result in a better world for all of us.