Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence: A Threat or Technological Advancement?

Delve into the debate on Artificial Intelligence, assessing its benefits for industry innovation against its risks to privacy, employment, and ethics, and understand AI's influence on our future.

US President Joe Biden issued a comprehensive Executive Order on October 30 to clearly warn against the dangers posed by artificial intelligence (AI), particularly in the areas of developing devastating weapons of destruction and cyberattacks, as the debate over whether AI is a threat or a technological advancement reached a fever pitch.

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The directive proceeded to delineate the parameters of robust federal intervention, should it prove imperative to guarantee AI Safety, Security, and Trust. This would entail closely observing firms engaged in AI product development and employing the outdated Defence Productions Act as a means of coercion to force the abandonment of a specific enterprise initiative. This action has also been taken in light of the fact that the US government is a major sponsor of scientific research.

The main risks linked to AI include invasions of privacy, meddling in elections, damage to vital infrastructure, especially in the energy sector, preparing for pandemics, mishandling biological material, and the development of repressive tools. Administration representatives in the US have discussed research funded by China that looks into ways to interfere with vital communications networks connecting the US and Asia.

Given that social media was already being used as a weapon in warfare, it was obvious that artificial intelligence (AI), which would be the pinnacle of IT development, would entice nations and players to develop it for both the automation of weapons and new iterations of “proxy wars.”

It’s interesting to note that AI-based deepfakes are already in use in India. They are intended, among other things, to sway public opinion, discredit public figures and leaders, and sow discord.

Misuse of data to produce market volatility, social unrest, and socioeconomic inequality can lead to algorithmic bias.

Renowned machine learning and neural network expert Geoffrey Hinton has allegedly discussed the perils of artificial intelligence (AI), and Elon Musk, along with numerous other tech titans, has cautioned in an open letter that unbridled AI research could present “huge risks to society and humanity.”

The CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman, urged legislators to make sure that rules “promoted innovation and did not strangle it.”

India is leading international efforts to support the appropriate development of AI for the benefit of all people without allowing it to have any negative side effects. The security establishment was able to rely on the AI-based cameras of the Facial Recognition System in the lead-up to the G20 Summit in Delhi last September. AI was a major topic of discussion during the G20 summit in Delhi.

A number of concerns were voiced regarding the potential economic impact of generative AI, particularly with regard to the loss of white-collar jobs, as a result of AI applications.

It is evident that companies can use AI to increase productivity and efficiency without eliminating jobs; after all, productivity is measured by efficiency.

The necessity of international AI regulations will be a key item on the agenda for the upcoming G20 meeting in Brazil. Other things that would come up there are big tech monopolies and anti-competitive policies.

The G20 meeting in Delhi covered the topic of using AI to advance economic growth while preserving human rights, and it was suggested that this quickly developing technology needs international regulation.

On September 8, the eve of the G20 summit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Biden held bilateral talks at the Prime Minister’s residence with the aim of enhancing cooperation in emerging domains such as AI and space. The Indo-US relationship has reached a whole new degree of strategic friendship as a result.

The Indo-US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) created a program of Indo-US engagement for Technology Partnership for the Future earlier this year in July. The program includes $2 million in endowment, a new direction, and energy investment in AI. The program’s goal is to jointly develop and market artificial intelligence.

India is confident that by influencing health care, agriculture, climate change, and other areas, it can avoid taking any risks in order to implement the program that will advance social well-being.

More recently, during the APEC meeting in San Francisco on November 15, US President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed artificial intelligence (AI) in great detail.

AI makes IT applications smarter, just as computerization of human processes makes IT applications more efficient. Being smart means being able to produce more per unit of resource, whether it be money, manpower, or time.

India’s technological services, finance, and retail sectors are adopting AI more quickly than other industries like media and communications, education, transportation, etc., but overall, India is moving toward AI adoption more quickly than many other countries. As a result, Indian industries are well-prepared to use AI.

AI is a system’s or program’s capacity for thought and experience-based learning. Techniques like machine learning and deep learning rely on massive amounts of data being instantly analyzed in order to make smart decisions or find solutions to particular issues.

AI technology contributes to better customer relations and increased brand loyalty. Customers’ interests and preferences are gathered and examined using artificial intelligence (AI) tools in relation to their browsing history. In order to make communication as human and intimate as possible, natural language processing is used.

Conversation windows enhance the user experience, and voice assistants such as Alexa and Siri provide access to educational resources. AI-powered robots use real-time updates to perform tasks like inventory management, office cleaning, and carrying goods.

By looking at user patterns, artificial intelligence (AI) helps businesses by decreasing credit card fraud. Fake reviews can be detected by AI. People take advantage of AI’s capabilities because the amount of work they must do every day is constantly growing.

AI should be mentioned since it produces essential lesson plans, audio and video summaries, and rich learning experiences. AI can assist in the analysis of lab data and chronic conditions to guarantee an early diagnosis.

Facial recognition is becoming a common AI application in high-security areas across multiple industries, aside from personal use. AI recognizes unauthorized access. Machine learning makes it possible to identify even the smallest irregularities and can indicate any issues that may be present in the system.

However, there is still much that AI needs to develop in areas like language processing, creativity, problem-solving, understanding nuance, and assessing human output.

Artificial Intelligence can be thought of as a computer process that adds layers of 1s and 0s very quickly. An analyst stated that a computer’s “inside” and a human’s are not the same, and that binary computations do not produce a “soul.”

The ability to think analytically, be conscious of oneself, and have emotional intelligence set the human brain apart from computers.

In the end, AI was based on the input-output principle and focused on word recognition and pattern reading.

AI has the potential to enhance corporate growth and expansion, promote health and education, reform governance, particularly with regard to the implementation of welfare programs, make organizational operations more ethical and transparent, and improve everyone’s quality of life.

Human judgment will need to be used in critical situations, such as the administration of justice or the deliberation of a nuclear detonation.

By the way, the idea behind nuclear deterrence is that while firing a nuclear missile would require conscious decision-making, the counterattack that would guarantee complete destruction of the adversary could be entirely automated.

In the end, it must be realized that while technology, due to its widespread use, could be used for the benefit of humanity, it could also be accessed by those who would do harm, from terrorists and other non-state actors to brutal dictators who only cared about maintaining their “personal” power.

President Biden’s executive order, which addresses both national and international security, is a timely move, as India shares the hopes and concerns that the world has expressed regarding artificial intelligence.

While acknowledging that “ethical” AI carries some risks, Prime Minister Modi has called for its expansion and noted that AI has enabled the digital and innovation ecosystem.

India is aware of the necessity of proactively developing regulations with a “risk-based user harm” foundation. It sees AI as a driver of industrial transformation, job creation, and economic expansion. India wants the benefits of AI to be equally available to all societal segments and recognizes the significance of protecting citizens’ interests. When it comes to developing AI, we should encourage cooperation and include researchers, industry stakeholders, government agencies, civil society organizations, and subject matter experts. We should also choose an adaptable regulatory framework.

India’s leading policy think tank, NITI Ayog, is actively working to develop the country’s AI development strategy, paying particular attention to important areas like research, education, workforce development, security, and data usage.

(The author was the Director of the Intelligence Bureau in the past. Opinions are subjective.)

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