Embracing the Uncharted Waters of AI: A Personal Journey

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Embracing the Uncharted Waters of AI: A Personal Journey
by Lauren Branch

As I stand on the cusp of my 60s, reflecting on the rapid evolution of technology that has unfolded during my lifetime, one concept that has taken center stage is Artificial Intelligence (AI). Admittedly, for a while, I was apprehensive about the implications of AI – the idea of machines becoming smarter than humans seemed like something straight out of a science fiction novel. Yet, as time has gone by, I’ve undergone a transformation, from being wary of AI to wholeheartedly embracing its potential. This journey has been as much about personal growth as it has been about witnessing the capabilities of AI.

Growing up in an era when the idea of a pocket-sized computer was something reserved for science fiction, my generation has witnessed an unprecedented technological leap. However, it wasn’t until recent years that AI truly began to creep into our daily lives. I have found myself grappling with the fear of the uncertainties that AI posed. Would it render certain jobs obsolete? Could machines truly replicate the complexities of human thought and emotion? What about the ethical ramifications?

But as the saying goes, time is the greatest teacher. My perspective has shifted. It started subtly – from personalized music recommendations on streaming platforms to the convenience of voice assistants that answer my queries. These experiences highlighted the conveniences AI brings, streamlining tasks and offering insights that were previously unimaginable. What struck me was that, beneath the layers of algorithms and data, AI was designed by humans with the intention of enhancing our lives.

As I delve deeper into AI’s capabilities, I am struck by its role in fields that transcend entertainment and convenience. Healthcare, for instance, has seen remarkable advancements through AI-powered diagnostics and treatment plans. The precision with which AI can analyze medical data to detect diseases early is nothing short of remarkable. And in my own orbit, tremendous strides have been made with AI to address accessibility issues in our digital world. At NewView, we use AI to scan websites for compliance and use a combination of human power coupled with AI to remediate problems. Witnessing these real-world applications, I find myself acknowledging that AI is not just a buzzword, but can be a force for good that holds the potential to revolutionize how we approach age-old challenges.

What truly transformed my perspective was my direct interaction with AI tools. As I embarked on this article, I decided to use the help of AI to demonstrate its potential. The technology effortlessly generated ideas, provided suggestions, and even refined sentences. It was as though I had a writing companion, one that combined the essence of my thoughts with an uncanny ability to analyze and refine them.

As I credit some of the creation of this article to AI, it’s a symbolic gesture of acceptance and recognition. Just as I have matured and evolved over the years, my perspective on AI has matured too. The fear and uncertainty have given way to appreciation and awe. The realization that AI doesn’t seek to replace human ingenuity, but rather amplify it, is liberating. It’s a testament to our ability to embrace change and leverage it to enhance the human experience.

As a 58-year-old who’s seen the world transform in remarkable ways, I find myself excitedly looking towards a future where AI and human collaboration drive progress and innovation. So, here’s to the uncharted waters of AI!

2 Comments for : Embracing the Uncharted Waters of AI: A Personal Journey
    • Dick Hefton
    • August 21, 2023

    Rather than Bravo, Bravo, you invite Me to respond, Roget!, Roget, With your Sophisticated SpellChek!
    You have simplified a mystery most of us try to pretend this fad will pass and save us having to indulge.
    Better, you personalize a complicated development to calm our fears and thus get to know you better.
    That, which enhances the purpose of “Reflection!”

    • Bart Binning
    • August 21, 2023

    We are in the middle of a true societal paradigm shift that is likely to complete itself in less than a decade. During the Industrial Revolution, education focused on efficiently training a person for a lifetime job. During the AI revolution, lifelong-learning focuses on getting people people comfortable with evolving their job skills as new technologies are developed or developed.
    In my mind, this AI revolution and its efficiencies could not have occurred fast enough to accommodate the new generation of workers who no longer focus on work, but rather self-actualization. I suspect that with this AI regulation we will go to a 32 hour 4 day work week – with the big question being what day of the week is added to the weekend – Friday or Monday?

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