aKin's vision for human-AI co-evolution

June 17, 2019
Watch the speech here

I had the privilege of presenting about aKin's vision at this year's edition of Creative Innovation in Melbourne. Our CEO, Liesl Yearsley, was meant to be the presenter, but she had to fly back to Sydney at the last minute.

My lack of preparation aside, the message that we wanted to convey was that we (as individuals, as decision-makers, as a country) can't be passive participants in the massive transformation that is occurring due to artificial intelligence.

The companies that are developing the next wave of consumer AI are not incentivised to maximise your wellbeing – the only metric that they ultimately have to optimise for is profit.

At aKin we are developing Personal AI that optimises for trust, depth of relationship, and ultimately your wellbeing. We are actively researching approaches to ensure that AI is aligned to your needs, goals and values. And we are set up as a Public Benefit Corporation.

This is critically important because we can already see the effects of our humanity merging with digital technology that is developed purely to maximise profits: addiction. Addiction to consumption, addiction to content, and addiction to vanity metrics.

Our co-evolution with technology is an inevitable process that started with early tool use and the domestication of fire. This changed the physiology of our brains and enabled humans to conquer the entire planet.

The development of complex language set us on a path of exponential progress, and as we merge with artificial intelligence it will lead to further shifts in the human condition that we can only begin to comprehend.

The difference is that this time around we are actually aware of these changes. We can anticipate them and we can nudge the invisible hand of progress to maximise the positive and minimise the negative impacts.

You can watch the full video here. I hope you enjoy this talk and please feel free to reach out if you're interested in shaping the future with us.