The future of work is up for debate between tech giants and CEOs alike. And when it comes to artificial intelligence, the fog has yet to lift. Is it due to the uncertainty around AI and its ever-growing presence in the tech industry? Or, is it due to the looming changes that the use of AI could create? Whatever the case, no one can seem to agree.
Even tech giants Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk cannot seem to agree, creating two of the five schools of thought that exist on AI. There are many questions revolving around the AI world adding to the opposition—and confusion. Will it take our jobs? Will it create new jobs? Will we work together? Will AI get smarter than humans?
Only time will tell. For now, according to Harvard Business Review there are five schools of thought on AI. We need to look at the opinions centered around AI to understand where you fit in—and how you’ll prepare and react to it in your workplace.
This school of thought is all about seeing the positive effects of AI on the economy. Utopians believe that AI will bring forth a new era of extreme wealth and growth without any economic decline. HBR explains it this way, “AI and computing power will advance in the next two decades to achieve ‘the singularity’ — when machines will be able to emulate the workings of the human brain in its entirety.”
Brains will be downloaded and replicated. These replicated brains will do the cognitive work while robots will do the physical work. Utopians believe that this switch in cognitive and physical skills will create a growth in economic output, doubling every three months. The main belief in this school of thought is this: with AI and robots doing all the work, humans will be able to apply their skills and talents to meaningful actions, a way to officially “do what you want” with what you have.
On the other hand, dystopians focus on what could be the negative effects of AI and robotics on the market and the world. HBR calls it a “Darwinian struggle” that machines will dominate. These AI systems that are put in charge will dominate the heart of middle and high skill jobs. The positions that are left in the low-skill range will be given to robots.