AI will “exacerbate” wealth inequality and help the super-rich: Ex-Google Exec

A dress that Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) wore this week, Which carried the message “Tax the rich”, Unleashing a flurry of debate over how best to tackle wealth inequality, as Congress weighs a $3.5 trillion spending bill Including tax increases for corporations and high-income individuals.

The controversy coincides with the ongoing pandemic as billionaires, many of them founders of tech companies, have added a fortune worth $1.8 trillion as consumers become increasingly dependent on services such as e-commerce and remote meetings, according to the Report It was released last month by the Institute for Policy Studies.

In a new interview, artificial intelligence expert Kai-Fu Lee – who worked as a Google executive (The GoogleAnd The Google), An apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) – He attributed the rise in wealth inequality in part to the technological boom of recent decades, and predicted that the trend would worsen in the coming years as artificial intelligence continued to emerge.

Says Lee, co-author of a new book, We Can Already See All the Internet Companies.AI 2041: Ten visions for our future“.” Without AI, it would probably only be worth half of what it was worth, because AI helped them generate income. “

“When it simultaneously makes a few people very rich and makes a lot of people unemployed,” he says. “This is the problem of wealth inequality that AI will exacerbate.”

Five of the six largest companies worldwide operate in the technology sector, including three that each boast a market value of over $1 trillion: Apple, Microsoft and Google.

While some of the founders of the tech giants are among the world’s richest, technological progress has not brought comparable income gains to workers. Since the 1970s, technology has helped enable productivity growth of 61.8% while hourly wages have risen by just 17.5%, according to a report It was updated last month by the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute.

The World Economic Forum hosts the annual conference in Davos, Switzerland, Found in 2016 This technology has already exacerbated inequality in high- and middle-income countries and “will eventually spread to the entire world”.

Li said that the trend of wealth concentration transcends not only borders, but also sectors, because AI will replace rote jobs in blue and white collar jobs.

“This will extend to all other industries,” he adds. “So big business will be more numerous, and they will be richer and richer at the same time, because AI advances the parity of human intelligence.”

An employee wearing a face mask in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak looks at a robot at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) venue in Shanghai, China, July 9, 2020. REUTERS/Aly Song TPX IMAGES TODAY

Kai-Fu Lee has been at the center of artificial intelligence development for decades, ever since he helped develop speech recognition and automated speech technology as a doctoral student at Carnegie Mellon University.

Since 2009, he served as CEO of Synovation Ventures, a technology-focused venture capital firm in China with more than $2.5 billion in assets under management.

Speaking to Yahoo Finance, Lee predicted that automation will eliminate jobs in the economy in the short term, but ultimately it will create more jobs than it kills.

“Only in software, you don’t even need bots,” he says. Then blue-collar workers, visual inspections, assembly line work, waiters, waitresses, and many more jobs in factories and warehouses, Amazon collectors, and cashiers [at the] Grocery store, “he adds.” So when you add up all of that, it’s quite a number of functions.

“I think the next 20 years will eliminate more jobs than they create,” he says. “But over time, it will create many more jobs.”

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