Originally Published: 2018
Category: Technology and Design
Organizations are designing smarter connected products, services and features that provide safety, boost our health, and protect our environment through anticipating our needs.
Elon Musk ignited a worldwide media panic recently when he tweeted that the global race to dominate artificial intelligence would be the most likely cause of a third world war. Just a few weeks after Musk’s tweet, a new Hollywood disaster film called Geostorm was released, telling the story of a world where weather-controlling technology goes wrong and ends up creating a global ice age. Should we worry about this kind of danger in the real world?
In a less sci-fi example, self-driving cars promise to reduce accident rates and make roads safer, but what happens if hackers find a way to turn these cars into weapons? What happens when an automated car must decide between hitting (and likely killing) one person or aiming the other way and hitting four?
These sorts of questions make Asimov’s famous rules of robotics more relevant than ever. And we are already seeing the effects of these dangerous developments: For example, Facebook reported that in its experiments with AI bots, they ended up developing their own language and conversing with each other in a new language humans did not understand.
This trend was published in the 2018 edition of our Non-Obvious trend research and therefore automatically receives an ‘A’ grade. The continuing relevance of these trends is assessed annually and rated based on a combination of reviews feedback from readers, clients, colleagues and our own observations.