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How Artificial Intelligence Will Impact Our Identities and Relationships

Language and the Machine

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“I believe identity is created between one and another. You discover yourself in relation to someone else. With AI, we’re creating a relationship with something.”

At Social Media Week London, Founder of The Web Psychologist Nathalie Nahai sat down with Tom Anthony (Author, AI specialist) and Dr. Aaron Balick (Author, Psychotherapist) to explore the nature of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how it might differ from a human and tech perspective.

Below are some takeaways from the session. To watch the entire talk, plus access more than 100 hours of other SMW events and presentations, sign up for SMW Insider.

Anthony and Balick start the conversation off by discussing the different types of intelligence there are as well as how it differs from artificial intelligence. “IQ is the one that people are most familiar with. There’s also emotional intelligence, spatial intelligence, praxis intelligence, and more. When we’re thinking about AI, we’re usually thinking about intellectual intelligence,” says Balick.

“There is a key difference in how we’ve taught computers to be intelligent,” adds Anthony. “Machine learning is very goal driven. A computer is taught to do specific things, like play chess or do certain tasks. It’s a long way from general intelligence.”

The emerging trend of having AI bots represent brands and interact with customers was also explored. Anthony asks, “At one point are you confident for an AI to start representing your brand or your online personality?”

“There’s a lot of people who go on Facebook and see it as a measure of their worth. Is there going to be some people who represent themselves by using AI to seem smarter, seem sexier?”

When it comes to the future of AI, Anthony and Balick warn against the dangers of it augmenting our relationships with others. Anthony use Google Inbox as an example. “It is an easy way to handle your email. It also suggests replies for the email — now you’ve got an AI that’s representing you. What facets of your personality has it learned? What mistakes has it made? Some people are not even looking at their messages when they send it.”

Nahai summarizes it best when she says, “There is a danger of people using AI to make their live easier and make themselves lazier versus someone using it to challenge themselves.”

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