Dejan Milojicic, Hewlett Packard Enterprise distinguished technologist and an IEEE Computer Society past president, began the new year speaking with Chinese state-owned China Global Television Network (CGTN) about the society’s recently released Top 10 Tech Trends for 2019.
Anchor Anand Naidoo of CGTN America’s “The Heat” focused first on artificial intelligence — the technology that the Computer Society cited as the driving force behind its No. 8 trend for 2019, chatbots. Relying on AI programs, chatbots have become so lifelike that some governments are now considering regulations for businesses to disclose publicly that a robot is doing the talking or writing.
Injecting a little fun on the set, Naidoo even used Amazon Alexa, a voice assistant that is among the growing chatbots, to ask a question about artificial intelligence.
The playfulness aside, here is the video and a sampling of the CGTN’s interview with Milojicic and another technology expert, Ray Wang, founder of Constellation Research, located in Silicon Valley. The CGTN anchor questioned the two experts about next-gen 5G wireless speeds, Internet of Bodies (or IoB, which is No. 3 on the Computer Society’s 2019 trend list), and self-driving cars (No. 2 on our list). Milojicic is a leading contributor to our annual Top 10 Tech Trends.
Q: Where is this technology going? Shouldn’t we be a little bit afraid of it?
Milojicic: “I think it’s more a case when machines were first introduced. People were worried that they would take over jobs from people. And they indeed took some jobs, but it was jobs that people didn’t really want to do. The same thing is here. Today AI is helping, for example, in video recognition and voice recognition and other things, and they are better than humans. But you really don’t want to go through those millions of videos at the airport as a human. You want to offload that.
“Now there are issues like with any technology. That’s why regulatory compliance is really important — and ethics. I think there is a lot of work in that direction. IEEE, for example, has started ethics in the design (of AI) as one of the efforts. But I would focus on the positives, and just make sure negatives are addressed as well.”
Q: Is there a danger that this technology could be abused?
M: “Oh, obviously. I think any technology can be abused. We just need to make sure to put some safeguards that it doesn’t happen.
“Also, I think what most people are worried is that AI is a competitor to humans. For that reason, I think humans should always be in the loop — not for every single thing. You don’t want to monitor every piece of information, but, on the major decisions, humans should be in the loop to make sure that things don’t go wrong.”
About Michael Martinez
Michael Martinez, the editor of the Computer Society’s Computer.Org website and its social media, has covered technology as well as global events while on the staff at CNN, Tribune Co. (based at the Los Angeles Times), and the Washington Post. He welcomes email feedback, and you can also follow him on LinkedIn.