AI and ethics
So far this semester we have focused on learning about the technical aspects of AI: the different methods and ways in which they may be used. For the final part of the semester, we are going to learn about how AI needs to be developed and used in an ethical and responsible manner. AI that is simply deployed with no though to the ethical and responsible use can be very dangerous!
When you enrolled in this class, you were interested in AI and probably had seen examples of examples of how AI can be used in the news. Many of these new stories focus on the negative, highlighting AI (or another automated system) where it made mistakes that affected someone or a group of people in a negative way. Unfortunately the news does not tend to show us any of the potential wins of using AI or automated technology!
For this final module of the AI class, we are going to learn about how we (as computer scientists and potentially AI researchers) can create and use AI in an ethical and responsible manner. While many of the negative impacts of AI and automation are unintentional, that does not make them any better or more tolerable! While you read and listen to the videos, think about ways in which these negative impacts could have been avoided in the first place. Would hiring a more diverse team have been enough? While it may be a good start, it is not the full solution. We really need to think about the potential uses of our technology as we develop it and ensure that it is used responsibly.
Note: Some of the resources in this module came from the AI & ethics class that was held in Spring 2021 at OU (also online).
AI and ethics
Topic 2: bias in AI
For this topic, let’s watch several more great videos on bias in AI and then discuss them.
- Watch the first keynote talk in the video online here
- This talk is a 30 min talk from Dr. Nicol Turner-Lee and was presented as a keynote at the AMS AI conference in January 2021.
- Optional, you are welcome to watch the second keynote as well! It is also great and we watched it at a different time in our full class on AI & ethics. For this class it is optional but encouraged!
- (30 min) watch the Ted talk From park bench to lab bench – What kind of future are we designing? by Ruha Benjamin
- In our full AI & ethics class, we also read the book Race After Technology by Ruha Benjamin. This is an excellent book if you want to learn more about this topic! I am not requiring the book here but it is a good one if you want to learn more! Another good book that we read was Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O’Neil. There are lots of other great books on AI & ethics that have come out in the last year so if you are interested in the topic, go into amazon or your favorite bookseller and look up even more on AI & ethics.
This discussion will happen in the #general channel.
As with all assignments, we are going to have an active discussion on slack! Make sure you follow all the classroom rules of conduct and always be respectful, even if you disagree.
If we were in a room together, the conversation would be free-flowing. I want our conversation to be in that same spirit. I have listed a few ideas for discussion below but I want you to add your own questions and thoughts! Remember to use threading to make it easier to keep track of what is happening in the discussion.
The following are the initial questions to get you thinking but please feel free to add your own!
- What role does fairness play in decision making?
- How do the ideas of bias and fairness and issues with data collection apply to applications outside of what she discussion? For example, we discussed geoscience applications in the chat after her the talk at AMS. Think outside the box of what we have already discussed with Race After Technology and Coded Bias.
- What are the impacts of AI related policy (Dr Turner-Lee works for a NGO and focuses a lot on policy) on bias, fairness, and overall?
Go to the canvas grading declaration and fill out your declaration for this part of the module!
Topic 3: AI & liability
The assignment for topics 3 and 4 is below (see project 7)
Topic 4: AI & humanity
We are going to read something totally different today but it will really get you thinking about AI’s impact on humanity in a different way!
- (2 min) As a warm-up and very short video, I want you to watch the trailer for the movie AI
- (60 min) Read Telling Stories on Culturally Responsive AI. This is a really fun book full of short stories from a recent workshop held to discuss the impact of AI on humanity and our future. They wanted to focus on culturally relevant stories and they are great!