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#ethics21 - Ethics, Size and Influence

After lurking casually for a few weeks (my training schedule always conflicted with the live discussions) I was finally able to attend one of the twice weekly zoom calls that Stephen Downes facilitates as part of Ethics, Analytics and the Duty of Care .  It was time well-spent. Since I've been "invisible" for most of the course, I mostly listened. There were numerous insights that sparked and endless trail of considerations.  One main point: our AI will be as ethical as we and society are (Downes). But what if the AI gets ahead of us? What if artificial intelligence moves from mimicking our own ethics (as varied as they are) into creating its own?  As the AI evolves (as Sherida pointed out) who claims the discussion? Who manages the management? We may well find ourselves governed by an ethic with didn't choose. I kept thinking of the article from Wired , The End of Theory: The Data Deluge Makes the Scientific Method Obsolete ,  which shows how ethics is influenced by
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#ethics21 - And So It Begins

  Should we be concerned with the ethics of artificial intelligence? Are the robots coming to get us? When I saw this meme on social media my reaction to "And so it begins..." was an instant "It's well under way." As my son Juan has often said, whenever robotics and AI intersect in the news, "haven't they seen any of the movies? This doesn't turn out well for humans..." The challenge to worrying about machine intelligence ethics is, what ethics do we think machines will select AND, will that choice be favorable to us? At the heart of the problem is our own feeble fumbling with ethics. In an ethical world how could we tolerate patience who lack the money for healthcare? How could we tolerate treating MOST people as an underclass? How can we reconcile human "ethics" that allow elected officials to prevent citizens from voting? And so it begins? It's not the machines we should fear, it's what we are feeding them. -- doug smith No

#ethics21 The Machine Is Us (and We're Broken...)

High Performance Leaders should care about ethics. We know that they don't always, but let's suppose that we can influence that in some way.  I am humbly and casually following along with the MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) developed by Stephen Downes  E thics, Analytics and the Duty of Care and occasionally I'll share my thoughts on the course here.  The course has advanced quite far. Today I viewed The Machine Is Us , and I recommend it even if you don't want to dive into the course. We are all being affected by machine learning; the evidence is everywhere: increased conflict, advanced surveillance, and data used to aggregate enough information about each of us to influence our behavior. Often, that influence is beyond manipulation and become malicious. Downes points out the various factors in that. People can be unkind, but programming can also blindly lead to unkindness by amplifying it. Software can be opinionated. (see slide 5 at The Machine Is Us ). Efforts to

What If?

When we declare that something is true, it is because we tend to believe that it is true (unless we are deliberately lying). And, it may well be true, but what if we're wrong? Leaders are often wrong. Even high performance leaders. Here's one way to navigate that.  Instead of telling someone my truth is absolute, I will ask them to think about it. What if? Maybe we don't have to convince people immediately. Maybe we'll be more influential if they believe that they can think it over. What do you think? -- doug smith

#ethics21 Leadership and the Duty of Care

I've been casually following a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) structured by Stephen Downes , Ethics, Analytics and the Duty of Care . While it is mainly focused on how ethics applies to analytics (particularly Artificial Intelligence) and learning, it strikes me as relevant to well, everything. In particular, leadership. Leaders must make decisions guided by their ethics on an almost daily basis. As the discuss in #ethics21 has pointed out, though, while it may seem clear what ethical behavior means, it is much more complicated than that. Ethics, when examined with any level of curiosity, uncovers more questions than answers. Maybe that's best, but it is also challenging. I did take one course in ethics in graduate school working on my masters in Organizational Leadership. Every course, though, contained ethical overtones. I learned that leaders must examine their motives and reconcile them against their values while behaving ethically. I learned that there are many more sha