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Artificial Intelligence is a significant part of computer science that pays special attention to the development of intelligent machines that operate and behave like humans in the course of their work. Computers with Artificial Intelligence are generally designed for learning, speech recognition, planning, and problem-solving (Lawrence, Palacios-González, and Harris 250).
Programming computers for particular traits such as reasoning, problem solving, perception, learning, planning, knowledge, and manipulating and moving objects is a highly technical process and constitutes one of the core problems associated with Artificial Intelligence. This technology began almost seventy years ago when a checkers-playing program was first created. Herbert A. Simon from Carnegie Mellon University and Marvin Minsky of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology were the core founders and developers of the Artificial Intelligence research who hoped of making machines capable of performing human tasks as well as substantially solving the issues surrounding the creation of the ‘artificer intelligence, a process that faced a series of technical and financial obstacles along the way to its success (Müller 79).
Today, Artificial Intelligence is appropriately referred to as narrow or weak Artificial Intelligence since it is only designed to execute the narrow tasks such as only internet searches or car driving, or only facial recognition. Nevertheless, many more types of research are being conducted in the field with a long-term goal of creating a general or strong Artificial Intelligence which would surpass humans in terms of performance of almost all intellectual tasks.
The idea behind the creation of Artificial Intelligence was mainly based on the need to make human lives easier and better in different aspects as stated by Müller 79. However, the discussions surrounding the significance of Artificial Intelligence in the human life has, over recent years, acquired huge momentum. As much as artificial intelligence could provide huge benefits for companies and factories, it also causes a threat to the individuals who already have jobs that could be done by the artificial intelligence of computers (Müller 79). The artificial intelligence research stretches into different industries and sectors of the economy such as business and economics as well as the science and technology section where its advantages and disadvantages have, for a period of time now, been exposed and studied. This essay will argue on the importance and benefits brought about by artificial intelligence and provide a counterargument to show the drawbacks of artificial intelligence as well. Ways of overcoming the consequences of artificial intelligence in a workforce will also be discussed further.
Artificial Intelligence comes with many advantages and disadvantages and it is all up to the humans to craft ways of ensuring the advantages pull through and the disadvantages fail. As opposed to humans, artificial intelligence executes its tasks in a reliable manner without fatigue (Hernández 37). It deals with huge volumes of data and gets the best out of the data through the addition of intelligence much to the benefit of the owner of the information. Artificial intelligence is also very accurate, precise, and fast, hence, results in little or no errors in comparison with the humans. In repetitive and tedious jobs, artificial intelligence significantly serves as a replacement for the humans, hence, fulfilling its motive of making work easier (Hernández 39). Previously, workers used to do their tasks all by their own irrespective of the work volume and the only help one could get to finish up the task faster was the addition of an extra person. In a car factory, for instance, workers did everything by themselves, undoubtedly making them more tired and slow in their work, resulting in a low productivity rate in the industry.
According to Lawrence, Palacios-González, and Harris 250, artificial intelligence is also important in our day to day technological operations because they are unaffected by hostile environments and are therefore able to perform high-risk tasks, explore space, and cope with problems that would otherwise be of great harm to human beings. Exploring deep ocean floors, mining, and extracting fuels are examples of the tasks that could be hostile to humans and are instead performed by artificial intelligence. Apart from organizing and managing records in companies and factories, artificial intelligence systems also have the capability of detecting fraud in card-based systems with a possible future of carrying out the same in other banking and financial systems. George Zarkadakis shows us five things that artificial intelligence could do better than humans (Zarkadakis 119).
Another importance of artificial intelligence is their ability to assess people for medical reasons as well as to interact with them for entertainment purposes such as playing video games. Artificial intelligence can also function as assistants to humans since they can make suggestions for certain actions such as predicting what a user will search, type, do, or ask in a smartphone as well making corrections to any human errors made in spelling (Agrawal, Gans and Goldfarb 23). As opposed to humans, artificial intelligence lacks an emotional side, thus, ensuring that the right programming decisions are made through logical and rational thinking, hence, doing away with the human inefficiency brought about by emotions and moods that affect human judgment. Above all, artificial intelligence systems do not take rests, breaks, or sleep; rather, they are designed to work for long periods of time without getting tired or worn out and, hence, are readily available when needed.
However, despite all the positive outcomes related to artificial intelligence, there are a number of drawbacks that have also resulted from the development and use of artificial intelligence in computer science and technologically related fields. First of all, artificial intelligence is very expensive to create due to the nature of their complexity (Brown and Kauchak 127). Repair and maintenance in the event of a severe breakdown are also very costly and it may take a lot of time to recover any lost codes. The need to frequently upgrade their software in a bid to cater for the fast-changing environment also adds to the high costs involved in the maintenance of the system. Furthermore, artificial intelligence cannot replicate humans and, therefore, cannot judge what is wrong or right but can only perform what has already been programmed. They are, as a result, cannot carry out unfamiliar tasks and may even break down or give incorrect solutions in such circumstances.
Nowadays, things have completely changed. Since artificial intelligence was introduced, a number of disadvantages have been revealed. In the book, “Why the rich are getting richer and the poor, poorer” Robert Reich states that “The boat containing routine procedures is sinking rapidly. pp. 721-727.” By that, he means the individuals with jobs that entail doing the same thing repeatedly on a day to day basis like factory workers are at a higher risk of losing their jobs sooner than later because artificial intelligence is starting to take over the jobs. An example of that are workers in a water bottle production line. Back then, workers had to perform all the tasks related to all the stages of filling and packaging water bottles from the beginning to the end until the final product is ready for sale. With the intervention of artificial intelligence, machines now do everything from the start to the end of water bottling, hence, rendering many people in the factory jobless with a very little likelihood of getting a long-lasting similar job somewhere else. As it is a huge benefit, it is also a huge drawback. Reich also states that “The productivity and resulting wages of American workers who run such robotic machinery may be relatively high, but there may not be such jobs to go around. pp. 721-727.” This shows how artificial intelligence and machinery have taken over many jobs and left barely any space for a worker to actually do what they're taught to do. “Also vanishing are the lower and middle-level management jobs involving routine production. Between 1981 and 1986, more than 780,000 foremen, supervisors, and section chiefs lost their jobs. pp. 721-727,” states Robert Reich. If Artificial Intelligence doesn't have specific restrictions, more people will eventually lose their job and the unemployment rate increase leading the country to more problems.
Another disadvantage of artificial intelligence is that it cannot be improved with time as in the case of humans. Despite storing a lot of data, the manner in which it is accessed is completely different from that of human intelligence because artificial intelligence does not work passionately with the whole heart like humans (Agrawal, Gans and Goldfarb 58). It does not show care and concern, and also lack a sense of belonging and togetherness as in the case of humans. To add on this, artificial intelligence lacks original creativity and imaginations. They can only be of help in designing and creating yet they do not possess the power of thinking and imagining as well as the originality of a creative mind that is owned by the human brain. The immanent instinctive abilities of the human brain such as seeing, hearing, thinking, and feeling cannot be reproduced by artificial intelligence (Lawrence, Palacios-González, and Harris 250).
Another high risk is that hackers could play around with the machinery and cause significant damages. This may result in the manipulation of important information that may highly affect the legitimacy of the outcomes. Important data may also be stolen from the system by ill-intended individuals.
Many people love what is called artificial intelligence, and many people are entirely against it. Many people have come to conflicts with each other on their opinion on artificial intelligence due to the drawbacks associated with it. I believe that artificial intelligence is excellent yet it has many steps that need to be accomplished to not affect anyone negatively in their workforce (Brown and Kauchak 127). People need to find a solution on how to use machinery yet not make anyone lose their jobs because it will eventually change the country’s economy. As we progressively get developed on a day to day basis, artificial intelligence is also expanding in so many ways that it could eventually start taking over jobs of people that work in offices. Once again this is a huge advantage but also a threat to most of the people in the working industry. The more jobs that are being taken over by machinery, the higher the rate of unemployment will grow and, as a result, many people will end up in poverty. Most unfairly though, is that the rich will get even richer because they will now spend less and cut down many of their costs while the poor will get poorer since they will lack a source of income due to unemployment. The part that got me thinking deeply is that if artificial intelligence covers people’s jobs, why will the unemployment rate increase since a high unemployment rate reflects a weak economy? Sherry Turtle states “If we take the computer as a carrier of a way of knowing, a way of seeing the world and our place in it, we are all computer people now. pp. 721-727.” This shows how our minds and daily lives are mostly based on computers. Using computers now simplified many of our daily routines such as communication and research among others. Artificial intelligence is likely to expand to other sectors of the economy and replace employees such as doctors, drivers, and cooks among many others.
Eventually, there’s always a solution to any problem. It would be recommendable to apply restrictions to the application and use of artificial intelligence. Artificial intelligence should not lead to losing of jobs; rather it should be a means of helping individuals in their respective jobs and careers to be able to minimize the risks or chances of making errors in the course of their tasks. It should also be a means of reducing unemployment rates in a given country in a bid to boost the country’s economy (Brown and Kauchak 127). High tax tariffs should also be placed on machinery instead of workers to ensure the stability of jobs and reduce chances of people losing their jobs because of technological replacements. This will, in turn, see to it that companies employ workers even if it means paying them a lower salary. Lastly, the types of jobs which can be taken over by artificial intelligence should also be limited and restricted to only the ones that require very little or minimal training and specialization.
In conclusion, artificial intelligence is a very important aspect of the overall development of the field of technology and computer science. With the increasing research conducted in the field, more knowledge and discoveries are being made every day with respect to the field, significantly building the hope of finding new ways of making artificial intelligence suitable in its application in a bid to ensure that little or no jobs are lost at all due to its effects. Artificial intelligence comes with a lot of benefits that look to make work easier, accurate, precise, and faster but also bears a number of disadvantages and drawbacks such as its high cost of development and operation as well as its low productivity with respect to thinking and creativity. It is important that ways of ensuring job security in the face of artificial intelligence are fully devised because it is only the humans who can take the place of machines in the event that the machines break down, hence, saving the company from very many problems that could arise as a result of the same. I believe that giving the workers help with machinery that won't cost as much would be more productive and hopefully, it won't cause problems to the business or around the business.
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Brown, Laura E., and David Kauchak. "Educational Advances in Artificial Intelligence." AI Magazine, vol. 34, no. 4, 2013, pp. 127.
Hernández Orallo, José. The Measure of all Minds: Evaluating Natural and Artificial Intelligence. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom, 2017.
Lawrence, David R., César Palacios-González, and John Harris. "Artificial Intelligence." Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics : CQ : The International Journal of Healthcare Ethics Committees, vol. 25, no. 2, 2016, pp. 250.
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Reich, Robert. “Why the Rich are getting Richer and the Poor, Poorer?” The McGraw-Hill Reader: Issues across The disciplines, 12th ed., edited by Gilbert H. Muller, McGraw-hill, 2014, pp. 404-417.
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Zarkadakis, George. “5 Things AI Can Do Better Than Humans.” The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, 4 Jan. 2016, www.huffingtonpost.com/george-zarkadakis/5-things-ai-can-do-better_b_8906570.html.
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