With ChatGPT, an interactive artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot, citizens strongly feel that a new era of AI has arrived. Humankind began to think about the future with AI and seek how to survive with awe and anxiety. Generative AI, such as ChatGPT, creates poems and novels, and demonstrates outstanding abilities in composition and art, threatening humans’ intellectual and artistic labor.
Competition among AI companies intensifies as numerous, large language model–based AI, such as GPT4, has been released before the heat of ChatGPT cools down. The large language model is regarded as a “revolutionary technology comparable to the graphical user interface (GUI) of the 1980s” in that it acquired human language. AI creates values previously unimaginable in society as a whole and in individuals’ daily lives. It can also contribute to improving the quality of life of vulnerable groups such as the elderly and persons with disabilities, developing new drugs, and discovering certain types of cancer. In addition, it has great potential to become a means to save human life, such as developing a solution to the climate energy crisis, a difficult problem for humanity.
However, as much as the innovations and expectations that AI brings, uncertainties that it can dominate humans and threaten human civilization are also growing. There are concerns raised that it may replace human jobs, the public sphere might collapse because of the spread of fake news, and we may lose control of civilization. Depending on how it is used as a tool, AI can either create social values that contribute to humanity or harm the foundation of society. In order to create AI that coexists with everyone, discussion and consensus among relevant stakeholders, such as developers, citizens, businesses, and politics, are required.
The dangers of AI have already been experienced in social media. Social media, which was driven by low-level AI and algorithms, bore high expectations in the early days that it would demolish authoritarianism and contribute to democracy through active communication and participation, but the reality was quite the opposite. Sufficient discussions and social consensus are now needed so that the “social (media) dilemma” does not become an “AI dilemma.” We need to establish laws and systems that can control AI before the systems underlying our society are subordinated to more powerful AI. This may be the golden time for AI that coexists with humans.
This year, for the second time, the Human and Digital Forum wants to go beyond the dichotomy of utopia and dystopia for the future of AI and look at the potential benefits and risks. We would like to look at how AI is expanding to the field of art, which is unique to humans, and discuss both the future of art and humans. We would also like to discuss ethical challenges that our society needs to prepare for more human-friendly AI, and “AI literacy,” which is to use and deal with AI technology wisely beyond vague expectations and the anxiety it brings.
Now that we have welcomed the spring of AI, rather than rushing into autumn, we would like to open a forum for discussions where we can fully enjoy and reflect on the summer of AI.