Artificial intelligence (AI) has rapidly integrated into our everyday lives. We see AI-powered devices and services everywhere from phones, computers, and cars to apps and services that help us manage finances, stay in touch with loved ones, and shop for goods and services.
As the Deputy Commissioner at the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services and Chief Information Officer for the State of Connecticut, I am responsible for overseeing the state’s use and implementation of technology. This includes how new technology is deployed to better serve you: the public.
Whether it’s diagnosing disease or detecting computer viruses, A.I. continues to advance and is becoming increasingly sophisticated and capable. A.I. systems are now able to learn and adapt at an unprecedented rate, and in some cases beginning to surpass human capabilities.
The rapid advancement of A.I. has raised several concerns about what the future has in store. Some people fear A.I. will eventually become so intelligent that it will completely surpass human intelligence and pose a threat to our existence. Others worry that A.I. will lead to mass unemployment, as machines become capable of doing more and more jobs that are currently done by humans. Science fiction writers expanded our imaginations over many decades of exploring these possibilities.
While it is important to be aware of the potential risks associated with A.I., it is also important to consider the potential A.I. has for advancing good in the world. AI can be used to solve some of the world’s most pressing problems, such as climate change, poverty, and disease. A.I. can also be used to improve our lives in many ways, such as by providing us with more personalized services, making our homes more energy-efficient, and helping us to learn new things.
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Society will continue to develop and deploy A.I. A future with more technology is the most likely outcome. We must act strategically in developing and deploying this new technology to maximize the benefits and minimize the risks. We need to ensure that AI is used in a responsible and ethical way, and that it benefits all of humanity, not just a select few.
Here are some things to consider when implementing further advancements in A.I.:
• Transparency: We need to ensure that A.I. systems are transparent, so we can demonstrate how and why decisions are made. Transparency will help to build trust of AI systems, and it will make it easier to identify and address any potential problems.
• Accountability: We need to ensure that those developing and deploying AI systems are accountable for their actions. A.I. can bring greater accountability to our work by reviewing both our human and A.I.-assisted decisions.
• Fairness: We need to ensure that A.I. systems are fair and unbiased. This means that the outcomes of using these systems should not discriminate against any particular group of people. As a tool, A.I. starts with data and determines patterns. If the data we provide is biased, and much of our historical data does contain bias, we must carefully monitor the outcomes and make them more equitable.
• Safety: We need to ensure that A.I. systems are safe. This means that they should be designed to avoid causing harm to humans or the environment.
A.I. is a powerful tool, but it is still a tool. The more these technologies sound and act like us, the more we assign human qualities to them. These technologies are not human. We have the ability to use our imagination and intellect to lead to a better future. The government, the technology sector, and the public have the right and obligation to apply these technologies in ways that amplify the best of our society. As we move forward it is important to note that A.I. systems are designed to follow the instructions and framework they are given.
By considering these factors, we can help to ensure that A.I. is used in a way that benefits all of humanity.
Mark Raymond is Deputy Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services