Will AI Be Empathetic? The HyperHuman Thinks So

We’ve reached a level whereby when artificial intelligence (AI) is mentioned a certain cloud of worry hits everybody around. Reason; people have been made to believe that AI will not understand empathy, leave alone being empathetic, and that, intelligent robots could bring an irreversible disaster to humanity when the tech attains full independence. However, the HyperHuman thinks otherwise.

Let’s dig a bit into the AI fearmongering currently floating on the internet. Most people now believe automation will wipe away all jobs, while those who don’t care about losing employment (maybe because they are employers,) are concerned about finding themselves trapped in a Westworld-esque era dominated by heartless intelligent agents that will be able to read their minds or wipe out humanity.

Are AI Fears Justifiable Across the Divide?

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Either side, the common denominator on this AI clash revolves around whether this technology is coming to assist or destroy us. Thank goodness, a company by the name IDEO has come on board to help clear these worries. IDEO is a global design company specialized in offering technology solutions, and in this case, it is exploring how AI could be that empathetic, caring and reliable problem solver in the society.

To explain this, the company hinges its argument on a concept they call HyperHuman exhibition, brought forth in form of intelligence machines designed to make life simpler. The concept has birthed two machines, the Purpose Machine and the Empathy Machine, both of which focus on working for humans.

Challenging the AI Fearmongering Wave

Almost all tech experts, Billy Gates, Jack Ma, Elon Musk and the rest have been in the frontline warning of a dystopian feature if AI is not controlled. To counter these talks, Jure Martinec one of IDEO designers say their research proves that machine intelligence will add more value to the future world than threats.

“The movies we watch, like for instance The Matrix Series, Terminator, I, Robot and the rest can’t really be used to foretell our future with machines. Reason; they sent only one message ‘robots might sabotage humanity’.

“But for real, we need to separate facts and fiction and put each to their right side in order to judge right. It’s obvious that chances of one day having a machine that would regenerate on its own are minimal and illogical –that’s the fiction part. However, the fact is, we’ve seen algorithms exhibit biased traits where developers used unbalanced data or forgot to define the exact purpose of the machine,” said Martinec.

Ideally, the experts at IDEO like to make it clear that machine learning developers need to focus on the challenges facing humanity when making algorithms. Not just the excitement that follows after they’ve hit a technical milestone. Like for instance, a clear explanation needs to be set when researchers decide to build a mind-reading AI — as in what challenge is being solved by such a system. IDEO’s HyperHuman exhibition tries to elaborate more on this using their new models:

The Empathy Machine

Source: static.standard

With this system, Martinec and his team demonstrate and explore how people could interact with agents effectively to make conversations more clear and meaningful.

From a practical notion, screens define how messages are exchanged between people nowadays — and it’s clear that at times it’s easy to type words that may deliver a different meaning, from what the sender intended. That is, from your end the message could be well sounding, loving and caring, but based on your recipient’s moods, he or she might interpret the message the wrong way.

To tame such scenarios the Empathy Machine deploys an intelligent guide to ensure the message you write carries the exact message, empathically to the intended receiver, clear right?

The Purpose Machine

Source: standard

On the other IDEO’s Purpose Machine seems to go against the notion that automation will consume jobs, as it helps folks attain their carrier goals, by helping them discover their inborn capabilities. This to be precise overturns the research that pointed out that over 800 million jobs will be hijacked by machines.

This AI system is driven by the keyword purpose where it takes an individual’s career goals and matches them with their natural skills to see if they can make a promising path. Meaning it can be used to advise in situations where students don’t know what they want to do in life.

In addition to the above systems, which are exclusively meant to focus on improving the quality of life of people, IDEO has designed another algorithm that helps folks make better decisions about the clothes they want to buy, the best place to spend a holiday and so on, called The Belief Checkout.

All these can be used to predict how AI will be of help in solving the challenges people go through every day, in the near future.