A call for an AI Ethics and Social Impact Analysis

We ask artificially intelligent systems to make order in our messy modern realities, but very rarely do we question what type of order. This is a call for an historical awareness of the social systems that we are building: Which social, cultural norms, values and interests do they represent, reinforce and enact?

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Modern Alchemy: Solving the AI Mystery

“Algorithms you get me like no other”. A person is leaning into a hole in an otherwise empty plain wall. Outside is a big sky with billions of distant stars. “30 songs you didn’t know you loved yet”, continues the Spotify ad. A spot for your eyes to dwell and escape as you rumble through the dark sizzling summer hot tunnels, squeezed between other subway commuters.The Spotify ad billboards you see in the New York subway these days tell you how mystic personalization algorithms will change your life. They are higher mystic beings that somehow know you better than you know yourself. They will foresee your future, transform it into something better (a starry boundless sky), you can “get lost” in their universe and escape from the plain wall of every day life. Their science is the alchemy of today. Creating gold out of rocks.

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