ICT, Datafication, Covid-19, Social Listening and AI Technology in Development
Artificial vs Natural…. which intelligence will you prefer?

Artificial vs Natural…. which intelligence will you prefer?

Image courtesy: https://www.project-sherpa.eu/understanding-ethics-and-human-rights-in-smart-information-systems/ 

Imagine a day in today’s world without the usage of google search engine… doctor diagnosing critically ill patients without any machines… stuck on a road and you don’t have navigation map app; how easy or difficult your life would be? I guess it will be more on the difficult side. Without much awareness we use artificial intelligence, better known as AI, almost every day in our daily routine, which makes our activities more accessible and convenient. This blog post is an attempt to reflect upon some of the positive as well as negative aspects of AI and the effects of its implication on the society. 

Much have been debated and argued upon regarding the impact of Artificial intelligence on the society, on people and their future. Opponents stand tall and strong against the further integration of AI, as it poses a significant doom of the human race. But why such advocacies seem to overshadow the development of the society until now due to AI? The society is developing, and the advancements in technology plays a key role in it, which should not be ignored. With every day there is a new discovery and a new invention which impacts the society in various ways.  

Image courtesy: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/information-tech/you-i-ai-how-artificial-intelligence-touches-almost-every-aspect-of-our-lives/articleshow/80075391.cms?from=mdr 

AI is often feared for being the eminent replacement of humankind. It will make the human race disappear, with people becoming less reluctant to work, becoming more machine-reliant and eventually drifting apart from their potential energy to work. More and more jobs are predicted to be recruited by the machines and perpetual robots replacing human beings. But in reality, machines which are being programmed for AI are trained to assist human beings and amplify their work performance, all under the surveillance of the specialist. But then the question arises, why are all these commotion for and is this high advancement of technology at all needed? The answer to this depends on the living race whose existence is most worried about; the human being. After all, the main beneficiary with technology is the people of the society. As since the past, the technical aspect of the human brain has created many machines and services which has made life easier and comfortable, people are hungry for more. This hunger for ease and comfort leads to the need for the advancement of technology.  

Image courtesy: https://lucidworks.com/post/ai-holds-promise-medical-field/ 

Let’s take a look at some of the positive aspects of the AI technology: 

  • In the medical field machines are used for faster and accurate diagnostics, which makes it easier for the doctors to start an early treatment and save life! 
  • Complicated Surgeries are performed more accurately and with more precision. 
  • Virtual interaction between the patient and the doctor becomes easier. Access to appointment with a specialist becomes easier while sitting anywhere in the world. 
  • Pets are therapeutic for the elderly people, but it often becomes a hard task to take care of the pets. AI integrated robots help the elderly community of the society as a friend as well as a co-worker by assisting them with house chores. 
  • Many times, fatal accidents occur due to human fatigue, like fire in the factory due to guard falling asleep or even doctors feeling tired during a strenuous operation, machines don’t feel fatigue and hence such accidents can be prevented with the usage of AI integrated technology. 


But hold on, before you make your choice let’s review some negative aspects for the same : 

  • Human necessities in the work area may substantially decrease. There may be no need for human interactions related to work and hence decline of communication. This might create a dominant void in the human psyche. 
  • Unemployment may increase because of the machine replacement. 
  • Inequality in terms of money and social quo might escalate, with AI shares going up in the stock market. 
  • Racial discrimination is still a criterion which is lagging behind in terms of modification through AI.  
  • Lastly, no matter how fast or efficient it is, AI is integrated in machines, which are programmed by humans. There is always a chance of machines going wrong, and when a machine goes wrong, especially on which humans are completely reliant on, it may lead to disastrous consequences. 


Image courtesy: https://www.dw.com/en/artificial-intelligence-the-eus-7-steps-for-trusty-ai/a-48250503 

We must learn to love our robots and give them their due credits. As we acknowledge the human mistakes, we need to accept machine failure as well. If a disaster occur it will not be due to AI but due to our over-dependence on them. It is a tool and we must use it as a tool and not try to replace them with human kind. Our aim is to make AI sustainable for societal development without any chaotic disruption! 



  •  Kaplan A, Haenlein M. Siri, Siri, in my hand: Who’s the fairest in the land? On the interpretations, illustrations, and implications of artificial intelligence. Business Horizons. 2019. 
  • Russell SJ, Norvig P. Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall; 2009 
  • Meera S. Are autonomous Robots your next surgeons CNN Cable News Network. 2016 
  • Rory CJ. Stephen Hawking warns artificial intelligence could end mankind BBC News Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia on Artificial Intelligence. 2014 
  • Joseph W. Computer Power and Human Reason from Judgement to Calculation. San Francisco: W H Freeman Publishing; 1976. 



  1. With the modern technology being diffused in every aspects in our everyday lives, we can claim that Artificial Intelligence (AI), along with the Internet of Things and Big Data, has a very unique role in shaping our societies. In this very interesting article we have read about the today’s debates around the pros and cons of the extensive use of AI, as well as the importance of understanding the utilitarian nature of such technologies. Above all, AI, as a creation of humans, can not be flawless, so we are all must sharpen our reflexes in order to be able to realize when mistakes occur, but also to be quick in fixing them without allowing them to cause any, or more, harm.

    With that being said, I would like to add to this conversation that was initiated by this article and mention a couple of examples that AI did not do an adequate job, and argue that the dependency of humans on them should not be taken lightly.

    As an example of the AI’s potential insufficiency, we can recall the offending and racist incident from 2015, when Google’s photo app did use the tag ‘gorillas’ for labeling black people. This application used AI in order to label online pictures in an automated manner. According to Google, this problem occurred because of the difficulties that the machine faces when it deals with dark skin tones. Similarly, the vocabulary used in the labels seems to be also a potential space for racist mistakes. According to Kasperkevic (2015) that was the case of Google maps when the searches for the phrase ‘nigger king’ resulted to the White House and the then president Barack Obama. In both cases Google tried to fix the mistakes.

    But can we speak for discriminating designing decisions during the creation of these technologies? Maybe the next example can help us answer that difficult question. More specifically, we can focus on the case of the wearables that monitor the heart rate of the users, and as it seems, they have a hard time when they deal with dark skins. According to Jackson (2019), the technology that these machines use, and its relation to dark skins, were well documented! Nevertheless, as she boldly states, tech companies in the sector advertised the various wearables’ colors that the user could select from, but they did not say anything about the effectiveness of these products, or their lack of, on various skin colors. That makes us think about the priorities of the for-profit companies, that despite their knowledge on the issue of ‘skin compatibility’, continued to advertise and promote a device without disclosures. Above all, they did so in a rather important topic, that is the people’s health!

    With that example in mind we can then attempt to make two conclusions. First, it is the suggestion that the tech companies, that focus on profit, in our today’s capitalistic system that is fueled by the culture of over-consumption, do not prioritize the quality of a product, even if it belongs in a rather serious field as health, but they focus on increasing their profit, even if they have to deceive their customers. Or is it more accurate to say, they deceive particularly the customers of color? And that is a question that leads us to the second conclusion, that in some cases, as it is the case with the health wearable product that the company was aware of the problem of using it in dark skins, made a deliberate decision, on one hand, not to redesign the product itself, and on the other, not to inform the users for its deficiency. In that way, we can then claim that this type of discrimination against the black people was a “discrimination by design”, a realization that forces us to be critical towards companies that exhibit such a behavior. After all, technological products are just tools, and as Unwin claims, they are not neutral, in the sense that “are rather a deliberate products, suffused with interests, that are designed for a particular purpose” (Unwin, 2017 ,p.13). Hence, when a problem occurs, there is the need to search for its underlying reasons within the products’ producers and their interests.

    All in all, at least for the moment, we should be very careful when we allow AIs to be present in various human activities. Maybe in the future, when the technology will become more advanced, as the human capacity on designing it will increase, we can start ‘allowing’ our robots to be part in more sensitive human activities where delicate approaches are needed. But for now, a question remains valid and need further consideration, that is, how can machines be involved in activities that are not based solely in cold logic and pure mathematics, but rather in emotional elements, such as empathy and compassion, that characterize us a species?


    Jackson, J., (2019). ‘Black Communities Are Already Living in a Tech Dystopia’ – FAIR. FAIR. Retrieved 10 October 2021, from https://fair.org/home/black-communities-are-already-living-in-a-tech-dystopia/.

    Kasperkevic, J., (2015). Google says sorry for racist auto-tag in photo app. the Guardian. Retrieved 10 October 2021, from https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/jul/01/google-sorry-racist-auto-tag-photo-app.

    Unwin, T., (2017). Reclaiming information and communication technologies for development. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Nick Papas
  2. The creation of AI was originally invented to make our lives happier, easier. I like the way you defined the good and the bad aspects of AI because it is true. They do help our lives in many ways (especially in healthcare) but in other ways, they do not because the inequality gap increases when people’s jobs go away because of AI machines doing the work. It is a tough dilemma to decipher how much AI is too much.
    Advances in technology have been improving and escalating in unprecedented way with many calling this time the Information Age; however laws and regulations have been lagging behind the advances in tech. In other words, new technology is created faster than governments can enact laws about them.
    I don’t have answers on how to solve this problem, nonetheless, I believe a human eye should always be behind the control of AI so that there is always accountability and a way to prevent something from going wrong.

    Avery Wilson

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