AI is here, but what do everyday people think of it?

Now that AI is making its way into our everyday lives, there has been a lot of attention paid to the various ways that it will affect society. While we’ve heard official statements from the white house as well as requests for more information, and statements from AI developers and companies, we haven’t heard much from everyday people and their thoughts about artificial intelligence. One research company decided to conduct a survey of 2,100 consumers from five different countries to gauge their feelings about AI. Here are some of the results:

  • 45% of consumers reported that they felt AI’s impact on society would be positive compared to just 7% who felt it would be negative.

  • 52% of consumers said that they felt AI would impact their personal life positively compared to just 7% who felt it would affect their personal life negatively.

  • Though two thirds of respondents said they knew something about artificial intelligence, just 18% said they knew a lot. 22% of people said their first impression of AI was “robots” suggesting that they knew very little.

  • 92% of people believe that general artificial intelligence will eventually arrive compared to just 8% who say AI is science fiction and will never materialize. Understanding and acceptance of AI is not surprisingly correlated with age with millennials being the most likely to desire faster development of AI and baby boomers being the least likely to desire faster AI development.

  • The number one concern that consumers have regarding AI is the potential for job loss. Only 18% said they thought the development of AI would lead to job creation. Other fears include an increase in cyber-attacks, stolen data, and invasion of privacy.

Though these fears aren’t completely unjustified, history and current data tell us that these fears may be blown out of proportion. Perhaps President Obama said it best in a recent interview: “I tend to be optimistic—historically we’ve absorbed new technologies, new jobs are created, and standards of living go up.”

It’s been a huge year for ai startups which have raised a record amount of funds for AI technology development. This suggests that the job market will see net gains rather than losses in the long run.

Source: HBR

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