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Tags: order | equality | equity
OPINION

AI Not Science Fiction and Can Wreck Our Lives

equity or equality

(José Luis Gallego Avilés/Dreamstime.com)

James Hirsen By Friday, 03 November 2023 01:26 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

An executive order recently signed by President Joe Biden centers on the regulation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its implementation in the "whole of government."

The AI acronym itself has been absorbed into our national lexicon.

And although it may sound as if we all share the same definitional understanding of the words, the truth is we actually don’t.

I begin this article with a clarification of terms in the hopes that it will serve to increase awareness of misunderstandings that are making the rounds.

The term "Artificial Intelligence" refers to computer algorithms being combined with data for the purpose of solving problems, addressing issues, or facilitating the creation of innovative ideas, products, etc.

An algorithm is basically a list of instructions for specific actions to be carried out in step-by-step fashion by computer technology.

AI utilizes something called "machine learning," which allows the computer technology to be educated, so to speak, and to advance further by adapting without having been given explicit instructions to do so.

The type of AI that most people are familiar with and that is currently in widespread use is designed to specialize in a single task.

Conducting a web search, determining the fastest route to a destination, and alerting the driver of a car to the presence of a vehicle in the car’s blind spot are just a few examples.

This type of AI is often referred to as Specialized AI.

Specialized AI is starkly different from another type of AI called Artificial General Intelligence. Artificial General Intelligence is the kind of AI that can, and likely will, match and even exceed human intelligence capabilities.

The executive order recently signed by the president is voluminous, exceeding 100 pages. It is also massive in scope, directing the "whole of government" to strictly regulate Artificial Intelligence technology.

There are several items that should be of concern. However, one thing that is especially alarming is the repeated use of the word "equity."

In the executive order, all federal agencies are directed to establish an annual "equity action plan" aimed at helping "underserved communities."

In a section titled "Embedding Equity into Government-wide Processes," the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is tasked "to support equitable decision-making, promote equitable deployment of financial and technical assistance, and assist agencies in advancing equity, as appropriate and wherever possible."

The same section also states, "When designing, developing, acquiring, and using artificial intelligence and automated systems in the Federal Government, agencies shall do so . . . in a manner that advances equity."

Again looking at definitional meaning, even though the words are often conflated, the meaning of "equity" is quite different from the meaning of "equality."

The meaning of "equality" was iconically conveyed in the words of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., when he urged that people " . . . not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

Character is the essence of a person and unique to the individual within whom it is found.

The meaning of "equity," particularly within the context of the executive order, is something very different.

It means treating each individual in a selective manner precisely because of skin color, gender identity, or myriad other designated categories.

The end result of such an overriding governmental policy may actually end up being the antithesis of true equality.

The executive order dictates that AI projects conform to prescribed equity principles.

Senior Fellow of the Manhattan Institute Christopher Rufo tweeted that the order has created "a national DEI [Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion] bureaucracy" and has "a special mandate for woke AI."

This may mean that woke algorithms could ultimately be incorporated into cell phones, electronic devices, automobiles, household appliances, etc.

Writing for Forbes, Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute James Broughel did not mince words.

Broughel called the order "the biggest policy mistake of my lifetime."

He also emphasized the hazardous aspects of the executive order, stating that it “may prove one of the most dangerous government policies in years."

To sum things up, Specialized Artificial Intelligence improved our lives in a lot of ways.

But when the inevitable happens and it evolves into a woke Artificial General Intelligence, under government control it has the very real potential to wreck our lives.

I find myself longing for the days when it was only science fiction.

James Hirsen, J.D., M.A., in media psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, media analyst, and law professor. Visit Newsmax TV Hollywood. Read James Hirsen's Reports — More Here.

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JamesHirsen
To sum things up, Specialized Artificial Intelligence improved our lives in a lot of ways. But when the inevitable happens and it evolves into a woke Artificial General Intelligence, under government control it has the very real potential to wreck our lives.
order, equality, equity
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2023-26-03
Friday, 03 November 2023 01:26 PM
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