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AI Is a Matter of Survival

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Anxieties about artificial intelligence range from the threat of sudden joblessness to robot insurrection. But if companies and governments shy away from investing in and developing AI technologies, then they could face a worse fate: obsolesce, or even annihilation.

At Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen, Colo. on Tuesday, a panel of executives and leaders from GMIntel, Slack, and the U.S. Navy discussed a coming wave of AI automation—and why neglecting this tech revolution could spell doom for laggards.

Naveen Rao, who leads AI products at Intel, compared the situation to a dog-eat-dog, Darwinian model of the natural world. “AI recapitulates what happens in evolutionary systems,” he said.

Animals use their senses, brains, and bodies to acquire food and other necessities, Rao said. Similarly, companies collect information about their users, products, and environments, and process that information in order to survive and grab more market share.

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