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You've Got It All Wrong about AI

Many people are afraid of artificial intelligence (AI) and its potential impacts on our society. They imagine scenarios where AI takes over the world, replaces human workers, or causes harm to innocent people. But is this fear justified? Or is it based on a wrong idea of what AI is and what it can do?

AI is not a scary monster that has a mind of its own. It is a tool that humans create and use for various purposes. It is not inherently good or evil, but it reflects the intentions and values of its creators and users. AI can be used for good, such as improving health care, education, or environmental protection. Or it can be used for bad, such as spreading misinformation, surveillance, or warfare. The choice is up to us, as human beings, to decide how we want to use this powerful tool.

This means that we need to think carefully about the ethics and morals of AI. Ethics is the study of what is right and wrong, and how we should act in different situations. Morals are the principles and values that guide our actions and judgments. Both ethics and morals are important for human society, because they help us to live together peacefully and cooperatively.

But ethics and morals are not fixed or universal. They vary across cultures, religions, and times. They also depend on the context and the consequences of our actions. For example, lying is generally considered wrong, but it might be acceptable or even necessary in some situations, such as to protect someone's life or dignity.

The same applies to AI. There is no one-size-fits-all answer to what is ethical or moral for AI. It depends on the purpose, the design, the implementation, and the impact of AI systems. It also depends on who benefits and who suffers from AI applications. And it depends on how we balance the rights and responsibilities of humans and machines.

Therefore, we need to have an ongoing dialogue about AI ethics and morals. We need to involve different stakeholders, such as researchers, developers, users, regulators, policymakers, civil society, and the public. We need to listen to diverse perspectives and opinions, especially from those who are marginalized or vulnerable to AI harms. We need to respect human dignity, autonomy, privacy, justice, and democracy. And we need to promote human values, such as compassion, empathy, solidarity, and creativity.

But sadly, our education system is ignoring to teach these basics of a peaceful society. Instead of fostering critical thinking, ethical reasoning, and moral awareness among students, it focuses on standardized tests, grades, and rankings. Instead of encouraging curiosity, exploration, and innovation among learners, it imposes rigid curricula, schedules, and rules. Instead of preparing students for the challenges and opportunities of the future, it reinforces the status quo and the existing power structures.

This is a huge mistake that we cannot afford to make. If we want to use AI for good and not for bad, we need to educate ourselves and others about AI ethics and morals. We need to learn how to use AI responsibly and wisely. And we need to learn how to coexist with AI harmoniously and

AI is not scary. It is just a tool. But it is a tool that can shape our society in profound ways. It is up to us to make sure that it shapes it for the better.

Image: created with leonardo.ai

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