We Need to Get Smart About How Governments Use AI


One of the big misconceptions is that AI is a future technology, akin to humanoid robots that appear in television shows and movies. But AI is not a speculative technology--it already has many real-world applications, and ordinary people rely on it in one form or another every day. In fact, iPhones, Amazon's Alexa, Twitter and Facebook feeds, Google's search engine, and Netflix movie queues--to name just a few examples--all rely on AI. That said, there is a vast gap between the complexity of AI processing needed for the complex geospatial functions performed by self-driving cars versus, say, the basic AI algorithms used for more routine tasks like filtering spam emails. Technologist Melvin Kranzberg famously stated, "Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral."