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#ICTSpring: the AI takeover?

The second morning of the Digital Summit on May 16th was dedicated to artificial intelligence in all its forms and how it affects has the potential to deeply impact and transform our society. More importantly, the renowned speakers shared how companies should use it in a beneficial way.

The day began with the opening words of Master of ceremony Susan Coleman, Managing Director Global FS Innovation Centre at PwC, who saluted the interesting topic and how the room was full.

Gary Bolles, Chair for the Future of Work at Singularity University (CA), handled the task of opening the day by focusing on the readiness of our society and workforce for a transition as important as the industrial revolution. According to him, technology changed the three stages of life (learning, working, then leisure) and mixed them in a single portfolio: "we are lifelong learning all three at the same time". He then highlighted the fact that change was not linear anymore and that is has become exponential. Three different mentalities were then mentioned by Mr. Bolles: "AI plus" (the interactions between AI and other technologies), "Human minus" (people tend to focus on the negative aspects of AI and the jobs it may eliminate…) and "Human plus" (the use of tech to have a positive impact on human lives). "Therefore, there are tremendous opportunities as AI can help Humans leap and enhance their capabilities. It can filter fake news, it can solve property and health issues, etc," explained Gary Bolles, who concluded: "We are problem solvers. We need to be adaptive, creative and entrepreneurial. We must make this a partnership and AI will help us reach our full potential".

Jean Rognetta (Editorial Director, Forbes France) then took the stage and shared a presentation entitled "The Future of News – AI: Fake News & Media" and started by sharing an impressive of video of Jordan Peel talking instead of former US President Barack Obama. He then asked: " How can we tell what is true and what is not? What was filmed, what is fiction?" His answer is straightforward: "We now get animated images as realistic as filmed footage and anyone can produce his own news, with a footage of quality. Images are no proof". According to him, the main issue is the education of the audience, of society. And media, and social media, have a lot of power over people. "Some prestigious newspapers decided to create fact-checkers and establish brands on fact-checking," he concluded.

Susan Coleman then welcomed Fernando Lucini (Managing Director, Artificial Intelligence, Accenture Digital). "There are fun things coming. The first thing is the perspective: how do we look at tech and problems? There is a new paradigm," he started. As explained, people want things instantly and they can actually have it. Yet, things are different depending on geography as people do not necessarily have similar expectations. He then went on to explain the Conversational UI concept, which he called the next paradigm shift: "There is a continuity in human interaction, there is context, we learn to know each other. It is not the case when you talk to a chatbot. This is not a real conversation. There is a future though. The future is vocal, personal and fluid".