What we will cover in this session and discuss:
- The sizeable datasets needed to power the birth of AI
- Redirection of wealth that could be used to benefit the UK economy
- ‘Service as a Subscription (SaaS) – lifetime payment model
- There are two key things you need for AI
- AI will become mainstream and the metaverse is coming
The Age of AI
AI and the need for investment in science and technology are both featuring in the news, but are they being taken seriously enough? With a growing trend to have IT systems ‘in the cloud’, are people really paying attention to where their information is being stored, or what information is being harvested in order to feed the sizeable datasets needed to power the birth of AI? Companies with literally billions to spend are showing a frightening lack of awareness relating to both the security and ownership of their information, or the fact that by using facilities in other countries, that they are.
Are we building a monster that we will have no control over? AI will change people’s lives, it will have the same impact the internet did when it launched, and it will become a part of all our lives. Once true AI systems are live – and whilst we live in a capital state – there will be concerns around the misuse of it as well as the many benefits we will gain. We only have to look to those select few powerful individuals with enormous wealth that are already being negative disruptors of skills and investment. We are creating a complete loss of security, as you cannot possibly legislate against a company that has so much money that they simply don’t care. Facebook for example already putting billions to one side to pay fines, and just carrying on.
More and more companies are following this trend and investing in ‘Service as a Subscription (SaaS) – lifetime payment model they will be tied to will ensure a constant stream of revenue away from the UK. All of this will result in a direction of wealth towards foreign companies and financial dependence on economies outside of our control. Wealth distribution is changing to such an extent we are creating individuals with the potential and power to bring entire countries down. The collapse of the Silicon Valley bank last week is proof of this change in direction.
Privatisation and years of underinvestment in the UK in IT and technology are now coming to a head. In last week’s budget, Jeremy Hunt announced £1bn to build an exascale supercomputer and establish a new AI Research Resource, with a £1m incentive to the company/person who does the most to further AI research. We are just not ready for the upcoming AI storm, and we need to be leaders in it to move forwards. Globalisation can only work if we have a fair share of intelligence, and the UK are giving ours away. We are sliding into greed and tyranny with no accountability from massive corporations.
All the proposed investment is a veneer the government are hiding behind. It is a game of smoke and mirrors, whilst billions are being made off the back of it. There are two key things you need for AI, and that is the money to attract the best brains in the business, and massive datasets/processing to learn from. We are currently handing over data to the US without knowing this to build its dataset.
We need to wake up as a nation. Profit on every level supersedes people. Did we learn nothing from the outsourcing of call centres to India? Providing peoples contact and banking information, and now 95% of all scams generate from there. Yet the same is happening with the cloud.
People need to realise that the cloud does not mean the US. We have developed a sheep mentality and a ‘want things now’ culture, people don’t want to save up and we are failing to recognise long term goals over quick wins. We used to be a manufacturing country, but society has taught and manipulated people to become consumers not makers.
All of this doesn’t just impact our wealth, but also our skill base. By outsourcing to clouds in different countries, we are also impacting the skill base in the UK, and not investing in our own technology or people. It also shows a total lack of understanding of the risks involved, but also the current poor visibility of alternatives in the UK.
This all needs to start from a base level too. Rishi Sunak highlighted the importance of maths, but we need children studying science just as much. Education plays a huge part in all of this, from school to adulthood. As a country we design microchips – yet the production takes place in the Far East. Bring that production line back to the UK, invest in the UK economy instead of the wider world.
Only by doing this can we start to redress the widening imbalance between us and the rest of the world. Constant and ongoing, not one-off investment is required. There ARE cloud facilities in the UK, decide where you want your expertise and intelligence to sit, and who you want to share your information with.
Technology is improving, AI will become mainstream and the metaverse is coming, the question is will we be part of it, or will we be watching others take it all over.
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