Why Robots Won’t Replace Us

Artificial intelligence, if headlines are anything to go by, promises to herald either a wonderful new age of possibility or harkens the beginning of the machine world —and once set in motion, one eventuality will happen, either with or without us.

Let’s be clear right from the start: At best AI can amplify the ability of humans, but I don’t see it replacing us.

Much about AI has been hyped, oversold, misunderstood, mislabeled and wrongly feared. There isn’t enough discussion about the technology’s true purpose, which is to serve and amplify human potential. As Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella articulately described in a recent opinion piece, “The beauty of machines and humans working in tandem gets lost in the discussion about whether A.I. is a good thing or a bad thing.”

A simple way to understand AI

First, let’s understand what AI is not. It’s not a one-to-one replacement for people. It’s not an all-powerful product capable of the same cognitive thought as we are. It’s also not interchangeable with AI-related concepts like machine learning or deep learning. Instead, AI is the practice of applying technology and autonomous or semi-autonomous machines that take on tasks or jobs that we either don’t want to do, or may be unable to do (think deep sea exploration with robotic submarines). AI is the science of making machines do those things that would be considered intelligent if they were done by people…

Read the rest of Abdul Razack’s essay at Innovation Communicator