Artificial intelligence scares me.
I’m not a Luddite, I’m not stuck in the past, and I don’t worry easily. But I have a feeling that the emergence of AI is on the level of the Covid pandemic, the development of nuclear weapons, and the destruction of our environment all rolled into one. It is going to change our world, and not for the better.
Of course, there are good things that will come from AI. But not all technology is inherently good technology, and both my gut reaction and my ongoing thoughts about the technology tell me that the problems from AI will outweigh the benefits.
Short-term Impact. If you think that truth is getting lost among fake news, watch what happens when ChatGTP and similar AI systems begin generating content on a larger scale.
Mid-Range Impact. We’re going to see the slow erosion of jobs and the concentration of power via AI’s evolution. As a tech friend noted: probably 90% of people will get screwed, 9% will have an admin role, and 1% will win big in this new world reality. This will happen slowly, and we might not even fully notice it.
Long-Term Impact. We might wipe out the human species. The consensus seems to be that there’s about a 5 percent chance AI is going to kill our species. If I gave you a bowl of M&Ms and told you that five in the bowl would kill you instantly, would you still eat from that bowl?
Few things keep me awake at night. The emergence of AI is one of them.