With our ongoing march into the endless maw of technological progression, there is a looming fear of Artificial Intelligence uprooting billions of skilled jobs that might bring about the ultimate self-destruction of the human race. Studies have been researched, articles written, and philosophers debated over the advantages and disadvantages of artificial minds with different conclusions seemingly from every direction. Through the slog, there is a truth that emerges. Artificial intelligence is not “terminator” but will bring about the freedom of menial jobs from humanity that will progress society exponentially.
Artificial intelligence is often depicted in the media as an evil mastermind, cutting through each and every plan that the protagonist creates with cold ruthlessness. Hollywood is no stranger to embellishing, and unfortunately, society often adopts those dishonest perceptions. AI (Artificial Intelligence) in reality is much more constricted and mundane. It might know how to be able to unfold proteins, making leaps and bounds in the medical scene, or recommend a tv show on Netflix. However, there is no evidence that AI have their own alternative motives or basic emotions for that matter. Quoting Hubert Dreyfus, a technological philosopher: Part of intelligence is childhood, culture and a native body. These conditions have no current way to be recreated to the point of being on par, much less past a human. A robot that only knows how you like your coffee doesn’t stand much ground to becoming a calculated anti-hero, now does it?
The use of AI will replace dangerous and boring jobs, freeing many from the mundane life of an HR representative. There is a growing feeling amongst the population, particularly younger people that their jobs are meaningless. This is supported by a YouGov poll, discovering 1 in 5 Americans don’t believe their job has any meaning whatsoever. With artificial intelligence, these jobs of filling graphs, salespersons, and market analysts can be filled with efficient and forever enthusiastic silicon minds. Many will point out how in the ruthlessly capitalistic structure we preside in, that these innovations will let the rich not have to pay any workers, making billions unemployed and the wealth gap widen to even more sickening levels. However, the recent move toward leftist polices, such as universal basic income and bolstered social services point toward a world where one does not need to work a 40-hour workweek to live comfortably and can focus on what they truly care about.
The freedom from work will bring about social revolutions. There is not a single county in the entire united states that will let someone working a 40-hour minimum wage job be able to rent a one-bedroom apartment. Without an expensive college education, many find themselves working 2 or more jobs, not even being able to contemplate their future. This is not the environment for artistic, physiological, or societal revolution. However, what if this person was able to not worry about scraping by, but focus on finally getting that doctor’s degree? Or making that film they always dreamed of? We simply cannot continue the level of productiveness necessary to reach this honorable goal without the use of AI.
There was a time when people said the printing press was bound to make people too lazy to remember things. You will hear the phrase that “the last advancement wasn’t that bad, but this is different” float around in any history book, and yet it always seems to fall flat in hindsight. Each advancement like fire, plumbing, or the internet let us open more doors. Every time we become a little freer. Every time we grow a little smarter.