Through the past few decades of summer blockbuster movies and Silicon Valley products, artificial intelligence (AI) has become increasingly familiar and sexy,..

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On the surface, you could take Bryan Johnson’s post as a celebration of the limitless creativity of the human mind (Human Intelligence or HI).  On this level alone, the post is fascinating.   

Yet as Johnson traces HI in terms of the “evolution of human tools, from rocks to (Artificial Intelligence) AI, he provides insights into the impending, world-changing impacts the merger of HI and AI brings. It is this deeper level that demands our thought and requires smart global, collaborative leadership.        

We’re at an interesting transition point where we are moving from using our tools as passive extensions of ourselves, to working with them as active partners. An axe or a hammer is a passive extension of a hand, but a drone forms a distributed intelligence along with its operator, and is closer to a dog or horse than a device…Think about the evolution of the car: from horse and carriage to Model-T, from cruise control to adaptive cruise control, and now to driverless cars.

“…Amazon’s recommendation algorithm is one of the most powerful forces in the world, determining which books are read, what ideas are listened to and what we learn…Engineers are now programming cars using subtle ethics models to determine, in situations where an accident is unavoidable, whether to hit pedestrians or veer off the road and jeopardize the driver’s life.”

What?  An online retailing giant directing our thoughts?  Nameless engineers guiding our ethics?

“It is certainly true that with every new technology we create, new risks emerge that need thoughtful consideration and wise action. Medical advances that saved lives also made germ warfare possible…As we embark on the greatest human expedition yet, now is the time for a discussion about HI+AI. But rather than letting risk-anchored scaremongering drive the discussion, let’s start with the promise of HI+AI; the pictures we paint depend upon the brushes we use.”

Now is the time for leadership.  The brushes are ours to choose; the pictures, ours to create.

Contact us and we can help you navigate the changes the Fourth Industrial Revolution can bring to the world and your company.