An “AI Race” Between U.S. and China Is a Terrible Idea

One thing we can be sure about AI – because we are told it so often and at so increasingly high a pitch – is that whatever it actually is, the national interest demands more of it.

We need it now, or else China will beat us there, and we certainly wouldn’t want that, would we? What is “There,” exactly? What does it look like, how would it work, and how would it change our society? Irrelevant! The race is on, and if America doesn’t start taking AI seriously, we’re going to find ourselves the losers in an ever-widening Dystopia Gap.

How would we “Beat” China, exactly? Beat them at what, exactly? Which specific problems do we hope to use AI to fix? At a point in history when cities are beginning to scrutinize and outright ban “AI” technologies like facial recognition, are we sure the fixes aren’t even worse than the problems? Nationalists caught in an arms race have no time to answer questions like these or any others; they’ve got a race to win!

All anyone can manage to do is bark that we need more, more, more AI, more investments, more R&D, more collaborations, more ventures, more breakthroughs, simply more AI. Maybe we’ll worry about what we needed all of this for in the first place once we’ve beaten China there.

New America’s Justin Sherman has written numerous articles about why framing AI development as an “Arms race” is wrongheaded – but only because it leaves out all the other potentially frightening and draconian gifts a nationalist AI sprint could produce.

“Competing AI development in the United States and China needs to be reframed from the AI arms race rhetoric, but that doesn’t mean AI development itself doesn’t matter,” Sherman wrote in March.

Sherman highlights a couple of nonweapon AI applications we ought to not leave to the Chinese, like the potential to use self-teaching software to detect cancer – though he provides only a glancing admission that “Many legal and ethical issues plague AI in healthcare.” It’s hard to square the belligerent drumbeat of AI nationalism with a calm, composed approach to making sure these technologies are only developed and deployed within a rigorous ethical framework, after all.

This article was summarized automatically with AI / Article-Σ ™/ BuildR BOT™.

Original link

Vein-pattern recognition is the latest technology driving China’s AI, robotics revolution

“Because we programme machines, they will react the way we do. The best AI is that which behaves closest to the human way,” Chen says.

Technology will lead to the loss of many jobs, either because of an increase in productivity or because machines take the place of humans [altogether].

“Fast forward 100 years; now we have machines and the [population] has increased several fold. But unemployment is not higher than it was then. And what has happened to the efficiency of the global population? It may surprise you, but it has actually decreased.”If we look forward another century, we will see machines taking over many of the tasks humans do, so humans can concentrate on other things.

“Technology will lead to the loss of many jobs, either because of an increase in productivity or because machines take the place of humans [altogether],” Wu says during an interview in Shanghai.

“We thought human intelligence could never be copied, much less replaced. We are still very far from that because AI is not yet able to reason, but we need to understand that human intelligence is not irreplaceable. Machines will eventually make decisions, and do so better than us.”

Chen has put a time frame on developments: “The computational ability of a machine increases exponentially every year, and machines are getting smaller and smaller. A human brain has around 30 billion neurons. In about two years a chip will surpass this capability. In China, we have already reached the equivalent of 8 billion neurons.”

“The future is made up of human consciousness, which can’t be replicated because it’s unique to each individual, and the computational ability of machines,” says Chen.But will that superintelligence be free of human bias?

This article was summarized automatically with AI / Article-Σ ™/ BuildR BOT™.

Original link

The NYT investigates China’s surveillance-state exports

Ecuador’s intelligence agency has access to a vast Chinese-made surveillance system which could be used to spy on its citizens, a report from The New York Times has discovered.

The discovery is likely to increase concerns about the use of Chinese-made surveillance state equipment around the world.

The ECU-911 system used in Ecuador was manufactured jointly by China’s state-backed C.E.I.E.C and Huawei, and consists of as many as 4,200 cameras, monitored by 16 centers and around 3,000 employees.

The system lets the government track phones, and may soon be upgraded with facial-recognition capabilities, according to The New York Times.

Outside of Ecuador, similar systems have been sold to Venzuela, Bolivia, and Angola, and the NYT reports that as many as 18 countries worldwide are currently using Chinese-made monitoring systems.

China isn’t the first country to have produced this technology, but activists are concerned that it has made these systems vastly cheaper for other countries to install, use, and ultimately, abuse.

The full report and video documentary is well worth your time.

This article was summarized automatically with AI / Article-Σ ™/ BuildR BOT™.

Original link