18 Sep 23

Embracing the Power of AI: Unveiling its Benefits and Recognizing Potential Risks

Harjit Gakhal

Artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a transformative force, reshaping industries, and influencing various aspects of our lives. It is a technology that holds immense promise, yet also sparks concerns due to its potential dangers.

In this blog, we will dive into the dual nature of AI, exploring its numerous advantages, whilst also highlighting potential risks and how we can mitigate these.

The Potential of AI

AI-driven processes have revolutionised industries and reduced the need for manual intervention. For instance, dangerous jobs such as mining have been assisted by AI and robotics, which has reduced the need to send humans into dangerous situations.

AI has also provided great assistance in the healthcare industry, for example, classification algorithms can now help distinguish a cancerous versus non-cancerous tumor. This can greatly reduce the time spent to diagnose problems and thus means time can be spent on other important tasks.

But some of the most mainstream AI tools are chatbots, a popular one being ChatGPT. ChatGPT has become the go-to tool that seems to know the answer to nearly everything! It can help us write emails, fix our grammar, and even write code for us.

Chat-GPT’s ability to understand natural language means it can interpret text and tell us how to write it in a clearer or more efficient way. Furthermore, given a prompt, ChatGPT can give you ideas and answers on virtually any topic, almost instantly. A process that may have initially taken hours of your day browsing around on Google can now be done in minutes.

It doesn’t stop there, there are numerous other AIs that can be used for a variety of purposes including website design, image generation, audio generation, and even making music, allowing us to explore creativity that may have once seemed unimaginable.

This is a great leap at reducing barriers to entry as industries that were once restricted due to lack of funds or experience can be now accessed and even monetised. Now, with all great things in life, there always comes a risk, and with the sudden advances in AI, we need to ask ourselves if we have sufficient regulations and practices in place to keep ourselves safe.

The Risks of AI

The rise in deepfakes which can consist of AI-generated photos, videos, and audio could be used to create a false narrative, put an individual in a bad light, or even worse, used by criminals to steal details.

But it’s not just crime where AI can be destructive. Many Hollywood actors are currently on strike due to a clause in their contract saying that scenes of them can be created from generative AI. This now starts the argument:  where should we draw the line on what’s an acceptable use of AI, and where do we deem it immoral?

How to Mitigate Risk

We must accept that AI is here to stay, so the question resides, how can we protect ourselves while still enjoying the benefits?

When addressing this, regulatory involvement becomes key. By shaping guidelines for AI-generated content and user consent, governing bodies can ensure fairness, safeguard copyrights, and cultivate an environment where users can confidently explore AI’s potential. This proactive stance not only guards against misuse but also lays the foundation for responsible AI usage and sets a valuable precedent for future generations.

From a personal perspective, we should be more cautious of the things that we share online. A particular example is sharing any sensitive details with tools such as ChatGPT. These are tools where we do not understand how the models are built and how data is stored and therefore sensitive details could be leaked or misused depending on the platform.

It is also important to read the terms and conditions to see how these apps store and use our data and what elements (if any) of your device they need access to. You may find some apps on your phone request access to more aspects than you’d be willing to give and thus could be an indication that your data may be misused.

We should also not take AI-generated content at face value and do our own research to get the truth about an idea or source. Furthermore, when dealing with AI-generated content online, it may not be clear if something has been produced by a human being or by AI, and thus it is even more important to do due diligence and gather knowledge from reputable sources to ensure that the information you’re processing is indeed correct.

Lastly, it’s worth highlighting that human creativity is like a spark that drives innovation and pushes boundaries. If we start leaning too heavily on AI for all our thinking needs, we risk missing out on the thrill of that “aha!” moment when a unique idea pops into our heads. These lightbulb moments are like mental victories that showcase the incredible potential of our human brains.

Balance is Key

Let’s face it – AI tools, including the impressive ChatGPT, are undeniably handy. They’re like a toolbox that can help us build solutions and answers quickly. But, like any good craftsman, we need to strike a balance. Overindulging in AI-generated content might feel convenient, but it shouldn’t replace the power of our own cognitive processes.

In conclusion, AI’s integration into our daily lives offers undeniable benefits, amplifying our productivity and potential. However, we must be responsible in our interaction with AI tools, ensuring that they enhance rather than replace our cognitive abilities. While AI, exemplified by tools like ChatGPT can be invaluable, striking a balance between creativity and AI assistance is essential to prevent over-dependency. By coupling technological advancements with mindful engagement, we can unlock the potential of AI whilst preserving our individuality and values.


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