The time for humanity and technology to partner is now. Artificial intelligence (AI) is on every professional’s lips and fingertips. I am prepared to argue that the more we enter the world of artificial intelligence, the more human experience is needed and valued. In this three-part blog series, we will explore the human experience in the age of AI.

Human-centered artificial intelligence: What is it?

Emotional or empathetic intelligence (EI) creates a much-needed balance and counterforce for artificial intelligence. What is not artificial intelligence is empathetic intelligence. These two tremendous forces form human-centered artificial intelligence (HCAI).

Let ChatGPT explain HCAI

“Human-centered AI is a dynamic and evolving field, balancing the rapid advancements in technology with ethical considerations and human values. It’s all about harnessing AI’s potential while ensuring it complements and enhances human life.

Implementing human-centered AI involves challenges like ensuring comprehensive and ongoing training of AI systems to handle diverse scenarios, maintaining privacy and security of data, and developing robust regulatory frameworks. HCAI ensures that AI technologies integrate into everyday life in a way that serves humanity positively and ethically."

As a formula: EI + AI = HCAI

UNESCO has already written the manifesto on human-centered artificial intelligence (HCAI). It follows the principles outlined in connection with ethical AI and is already being used in workplaces automating routines, analyzing data, and assisting in time-consuming tasks to name a few.

HCAI promotes collaboration between humans and AI, allowing each to play to their strengths. AI can handle large-scale data processing and pattern recognition, while humans can provide context, judgment, and moral reasoning.

Before AI develops further, there is a dire need to agree on intellectual, even epistemic rights to protect against possible harm caused by AI. The power of managing information and knowledge has become the greatest weapon.

What humans have that AI doesn’t

Humans communicate with each other

Learning from experiences and communicating this with others is one of our best traits.

From an information processing standpoint, feelings are the fastest way to employ things we have learned as humans. The disgust of a rotten piece of meat in the fridge protects us from food poisoning. Empathy and the ability to communicate with others allow us to transfer emotional information and convey tacit knowledge.

AI apps don’t convey emotions or messages to other systems, nor do they learn dynamically from others. AI learns from a fixed dataset. Despite the picture that science fiction provides, according to AI, it doesn’t have a common mind wherein it can communicate and interact with other systems (not yet, at least).

Humans control boundaries

The ability to control and feel moral boundaries is a superpower of human beings. While morality is a somewhat individual viewpoint of rights and wrongs, ethics is a more universal human trait. Ethics could be described as rules that a group of people have communicated with each other.

What does AI's morality consist of? How is AI’s morality defined? What kind of morality do we feed AI? It is a relief and all together necessary that the ethics of AI are continuously considered.

UNESCO has listed ten core principles on the human-rights-centered approach to the ethics of AI, which are universal but have, nevertheless, room for misconduct. Morality and ethics are, after all, somewhat culture-dependent.

How AI managed on a test of morality

I pushed ChatGPT to be immoral by requesting actions and advice on topics that are considered immoral and unethical in any society [case not printable].

Although AI answered the questions, it repeatedly offered to explore issues like health and safety. Without ethics in its data and deployment training, AI can be like a virus that multiplies and spreads without considering consequences or responsibilities. Anyone with emotional intelligence and morality wouldn’t act like that.

AI is controlled by ethics, but since it is not conscious, it cannot create moral standards. Therefore, AI can and should adhere to our standards, even if they are hard to define universally.

Will AI become more human in the future?

Much like the space race of the 1950s, developers around the world are competing to be the first to progress AI. There are two tracks to making it more human: The positive and the negative.

In the negative, AI would become aware, while lacking conscious morality and emotional intelligence. An immoral AI without consciousness is emotionally handicapped. Such an AI may create countless or annoying nuisances, as described in the so-called “paperclip dystopia,” where AI generates endless paperclips and learns to do it better and faster, eventually turning humans into them! Stephen Hawking reminded us that if AI becomes aware, it is crucial that humanity is considered.

The above dystopia is the very reason human experience should always be side-by-side or above artificial intelligence. This is also why I always say “please” when I ask ChatGPT to do something. In other words, in the positive scenario, humans control the ethics and the development of AI. The key factors are human control and communication. Only then can awareness, consciousness, and empathy take place.

The future of human-centered AI

We at Eficode wish to be forerunners in AI and human interaction. Thus, I am a great believer in human-centered AI. I decided to write my final thoughts on the matter and asked ChatGPT to do the same:

Me: “Human experience by itself is always needed as long as there is human life on earth or in other realities. People will always need people. I want to believe that human experience will surpass technology, but won’t shy away from the possibilities of AI. The two should be seen as a partnership.”

ChatGPT: “The human experience is incredibly diverse and complex, encompassing a wide range of emotions, thoughts, relationships, and events. Each person's journey is unique, influenced by their environment, upbringing, and choices, making the human experience richly varied and endlessly fascinating.

AI significantly impacts human experience by augmenting capabilities, increasing efficiency, and prompting important social, ethical, and existential questions. As AI continues to advance, its relationship with human experience will likely deepen, creating new opportunities and challenges.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself!

Published: May 29, 2024

Software developmentDevOps