It seems that artificial intelligence has come to stay. For years these algorithms have been used in countless applications, from medicine to astronomy. However, recently we have seen how it has broken into the daily life of the population. Anyone can write an essay, a poem or even make an illustration, using free access AI programs. For this reason, there are those who think that the next step is for many jobs to become expendable. Such is the concern that there is even talk about AI anxiety.
But would this anxiety be justified? The truth is that it is early to know. It is clear that artificial intelligence is going to bring about many changes in our lives and that many jobs will be transformed, as happened in its day with the Industrial Revolution. Then, many workers and operators complained that they were replaced by machines. Now, it seems that it is the most qualified positions that could be in danger. The AI, at least for now, will not replace a mason or a farmer, but has already replaced dubbing actors. Content creators are also concerned about what all this could lead to.
However, there are also many people who are eager for artificial intelligence to enter their work. They believe that, rather than take away their position, it can make their routine easier. Be that as it may, what is clear is that there is still much uncertainty. And that is precisely one of the main ingredients of anxiety. Possibly, that is the reason why this concept is already beginning to be used. But to what extent is it justified?
It all depends on the job
Andrea he is 29 years old, he is illustrator and she has been working as a freelancer for two years. For her, the arrival of artificial intelligence can be worrying. “Yes, it worries me, because I feel that we are going backwards,” explains the young woman in conversation with hypertextual. “But at the same time I think that in the end it may be a transient trend and that it be regulated so that it can be used in another way”.
Like her, many content creators are worried about an uncertain future, especially after the emergence of ChatGPT.
On the opposite side are the mechanics, masons or farmerswhich are fully displayed calm before the new situation. His jobs, even though they are highly skilled, are very manual, making it more difficult for them to be replaced by artificial intelligence.
Those belonging to other professions in which artificial intelligence has been used for some time, such as sanitaryThey are not very concerned either. They believe that AI can be a tool that makes their task easier.
Now, what about the computer? It is in its sector that artificial intelligence is penetrating the deepest. But, in turn, they are responsible for their arrival. That is why it is not strange that there is a division of opinions. For example, claudio he is 25 years old and he is still a student, but he already shows himself a bit pessimistic. “I think it’s an opportunity, but at the same time it’s a technology that reduces the need for labor, so there won’t be space for everyone,” he says. “In addition, it will require a highest qualification. And in this context, the students who still have a way to go until we settle in the labor market start off at a disadvantage”.
Raul (fictitious name) also believes that new computer scientists may have a more difficult time. He is 44 and works as system administrator in a well-known business management software. He considers that there are tasks that cannot be easily replaced by artificial intelligence, while the simplest ones can be easily automated.
“They are the most repetitive tasks and, a priori, easier, the most likely to be automated, and from my point of view I see that it affects more the new incorporations of young people, recently out of the race and who are beginning to do internships in companies like mine”, he says. “When they join a job that requires some internal trainingeach time they leave less room for maneuver to give this training and that they learn from simpler tasks to increasingly complex ones”.
In addition, he adds that “even for some of these more complex tasks, it is intended that each time they require less human interaction”.
But other computer scientists are waiting for artificial intelligence with open arms. It is the case of Biru. He is 46 years old and defines himself as one of those village computer scientists that everyone asks for help. And, in that sense, he believes that it can be very beneficial.
“To make video montages with photos arranged with super resolution and separation of audio tracks it comes in handy. Every day new tools come out with new applications, I like to be aware. I think that the latest advances in AI will not take jobs, but will create new ones”.
Birû, computer scientist
Is Anxiety About Artificial Intelligence Justified?
Some of the people who have given their testimony for this article admit to feeling eager for the advent of artificial intelligence. One of them is Andrea. “It generates me enough anxietysince I really enjoy what I do and I would not like to live bitter doing a job that I do not enjoy in order to survive”.
Claudio also tells that he feels anxiety. “It makes me quite anxious,” he admits. “When I started my training I had good job prospectsbut now that has become uncertainty. I don’t want to get carried away by prejudices towards a technology that perhaps will have more positive things than negative, as so many think. But I can’t help being pessimistic and cautious”.
As for Raúl, although he does not think that his job is in danger, he also refers to uncertainty. “This has only just begun and I think there is still a lot of uncertainty about it. Perhaps this is what generates the most concern… the uncertainty”.
It seems clear that it is uncertainty that generates this anxiety. This is how the psychologist explained it to this medium Miguel Omar Herrero.
“One of the variables that has the greatest impact when we talk about anxiety is uncertainty. Not knowing what will happen tomorrow. And in the labor field we have been chaining many years of precariousness and instability. With this background, it is normal that the irruption of these technologies adds a plus of uncertainty. In the 19th century, with the industrial revolution, Luddism arose as a form of protest against the fear that many jobs would be replaced by machines. The difference is that now it is the most qualified positions that they are threatened”.
Miguel Omar Herrero, psychologist
In addition, it clarifies that “the anxiety that is generated does not depend only on the fact itself, but on the circumstances that surround her.” For example, “it is not the same to lose your job and run out of resources than the fact that technology replaces you in X function and new positions are created that you can occupy. Or even that it replaces you and you know that the mass of labor assumed by the machine produces a source of income for these people, such as the Universal Basic Income”.
It is better not to anticipate events
Even those people who feel anxiety about artificial intelligence are aware that it’s too soon to know what will happen. Andrea, for example, says that this is what she clings to. “It calms me down a lot to think about the present, that AI still fails a lot and there are media outlets that still want to be professionals and don’t want to use this tool to return to their company more hostile”, he muses. “An AI still doesn’t know how to paint a picture by hand or paint a mural or make a tattoo, yet there is hope in my sector”.
It is something with which the psychologist interviewed by this means agrees. “Apart from all this, we are at a time where there is a lot of hype and it seems that this is nothing less than matrix”, specifies. “We can give an opinion, believe or estimate many things. I do think that in the long term it can affect, just as many people consider the opposite, but perhaps it is best wait a while and see how it adapts in our lives”.
Can artificial intelligence capture emotions?
The consolation that remains for the content creators It is that, perhaps, artificial intelligence is not capable of capturing emotions as a human being does. However, much progress is being made in this regard. In addition, as Miguel Omar Herrero recalls, emotions built by the individual and they can come from anywhere. In fact, he explains it with a very simple example:
“If I write <<pool, mountain, bike, town, Grand Prix>> we will all agree that I have written something very mechanical, even telegraphic. A list of words followed by a comma. But surely many have come to mind memories of their summer vacations when they were children. Maybe they even crack a smile. Contextual or environmental variables are very important, but also how a specific person perceives said variable”.
Miguel Omar Herrero, psychologist
In short, “we can get excited about something created by them, just like we do listening to a cat’s meow or simply looking at the stars.” Not only human creations excite us.
In case anyone disagrees in this link test can be done. Various images are displayed, some made by painters and others made by artificial intelligence. Would we be able to recognize those that are not human? Would they really not generate any emotion in us? We can do the test. It may surprise us.
Now, does this mean that we should fear artificial intelligence? Not necessarily. In the same way that the importance of making clear the objectives of the algorithms has been discussed so that they do not carry out harmful tasks, it can also be legislated so that it is not an advance that, as a whole, harms human beings.
The goal of artificial intelligence must be profit, as the Industrial Revolution once was. The truth is that nobody wants to go back to the times before it (although the pollution it generates should be combated). Maybe, in a while, let’s not remember what it was like to live without artificial intelligence and, if we do, we don’t miss it. Even so, this is only the result of letting the imagination run wild. We’d better let everything go at its own pace and, in the meantime, stay calm, keeping our feet on the ground.