Is artificial intelligence helping us or making us obsolete
The financial sector, auditing firms or administrative agencies are some of those that top the list of sectors where a great degree of automation has taken place. In call centres, up to 70% of companies' conversations with customers could be carried out by robots.
But not everything is so simple to carry out, and there are many other questions. When a computer system provides an answer to something, if we then need to know why it just told us what it told us, or enquire a little more, will it be able to answer us?
In this dilemma about whether AI and machines help us or supplant us, there are two theories:
In order not to be left with a sense of dystopia, we can cite more utopian examples, such as that of the health sector. A near future where technology will identify and prevent diseases much more accurately than now. Medical professionals will not become unemployed, but will handle this specialised information and have full control of the patient's progress. Experts in Big Data, Analytics and AI, working together, can develop algorithms capable of making very accurate forecasts of survival for certain diseases. As a result, healthcare will be more effective for everyone.
It is difficult to imagine a day when you enter a bar, ask a robot for a coffee, and he will be able to give you sweetener because he remembers that you have it like this every morning, warm, without froth, and that you prefer cake instead of toast with it.
However, it seems perfectly possible that a drone (yes, under human control) can fly over the surroundings of a natural park and, thanks to its routes, will know how to define which plants are not doing well, will be able to give clues to biologists who study the flights of birds and their trajectories, and can issue warnings regarding animals that are in danger in time to save them.
The question of whether artificial intelligence is going to leave us jobless does not, therefore, have a clear answer. It will depend on how we do it, how our jobs evolve and whether we will be able to improve with the help of machines.