Content StrategistDani Plicka
The rapid evolution of artificial intelligence has been a topic of fascination across industries, with telecom being no exception. On Tuesday, August 15th at ClueCon 2023, we gathered some experts from where the worlds of AI and telecom meet for a discussion about where artificial intelligence was not long ago, where they predict it will be in the future, regulations and copyright, and popular tools such as ChatGPT.
Hosted by Evan McGee, SignalWire CTO, this roundtable discussion brought together Eli Yelluas Replicant, Diego Gosmar, James Tagg, Anthony Minessale, Kristian Kielhofner, and Jeff Pulver. You can learn more about all the ClueCon speakers here!
The Evolution of AI in Telecom
Eli Yelluas Replicant kicked off the discussion by highlighting the transformative journey of AI in recent years. The deployment and implementation of AI have become notably easier. Eli drew attention to the evolution of generative AI models, GPT-1's humorously underwhelming performance, GPT-2's quirky charm, and GPT-3's groundbreaking capabilities that have revolutionized the field and brought major attention to AI in 2023. Now generative AI is everywhere and the bar has been raised substantially.
Diego Gosmar added that the telecom industry has transitioned from experimental AI implementations to more specific operational use cases. The goal now is to push towards generalized AI to enhance the quality and accuracy of AI-driven operations.
Quality and Accuracy
The discussion turned to the vital relationship between the transition from specific to generalized AI and improvements in quality and accuracy. Diego emphasized that in the telecom industry, accuracy is paramount. Without precision, the potential of AI becomes null and void, underscoring the importance of accuracy in industry applications.
James Tagg added that AI's capabilities have expanded to encompass voice and video applications, further illustrating its versatility and potential to enhance various aspects of telecom. In a couple of years, a clone of someone’s voice could be indistinguishable from the original.
Navigating Changing Perceptions
Anthony Minessale chimed in with his perspective on AI's shifting image. Initially perceived as a "bad guy," AI's utility gradually transformed public perception. With AI becoming accessible and applicable in various contexts, the focus has shifted from science fiction to practical application.
Kristian Kielhofner likened AI's journey to the transition from horse and buggy to the automobile. The transformation from conventional machine learning to AI that generates new and unique content represents a similar leap in innovation.
Regulations and Ethical Considerations
Jeff Pulver brought the conversation to the regulatory landscape of AI. He highlighted the discrepancy between the rapid pace of AI development and the relatively slow pace of regulations. He stressed the importance of having an active voice in shaping AI's future, noting that it's not just a concern for large corporations - it affects all of us. He encouraged individuals to express their opinions and play a role in determining AI's trajectory.
Kristian added a cautionary note about the potential for AI-generated content to have long-lasting repercussions, similar to the challenges faced with image manipulation tools like Photoshop. The potential for misinformation and deep fakes poses ethical challenges that require careful consideration.
Education and Responsibility in the Age of AI
The panel also explored the educational aspect of AI. Jeff highlighted the value of AI, particularly ChatGPT, as a tool for education. While acknowledging the potential for misuse, he emphasized the need to innovate responsibly to harness AI's positive potential.
Eli underscored the importance of building guardrails around AI, especially in custom-made and specific applications. As AI becomes more advanced and accessible, the potential for misuse also increases. Eli stressed the need for responsible regulation and awareness of potential dangers.
The Future of AI
The conversation turned to the future, with discussions about AI's potential to revolutionize industries and society. James shared his perspective on AI's role in shaping a new species, addressing topics like AI-human relationships, AI rights, and the prospect of AI-generated media. Regulation is tricky in this environment, because it’s still almost like science fiction.
Anthony reflected on the rapidly changing tech landscape and the inevitability of technological progress making current innovations seem antiquated. He emphasized the need to anticipate future changes rather than relying on current paradigms.
As the AI roundtable concluded, it was evident that AI's journey in telecom has witnessed remarkable advancements. From humorous beginnings to profound transformations, the AI landscape has evolved significantly - very quickly. This discussion highlighted the need for responsible innovation, ethical considerations, and active participation in shaping AI's future.
The roundtable offered a glimpse into the complexities and opportunities AI presents in the telecom industry and beyond. And as AI continues to evolve, these conversations will continue.
Missed ClueCon 2023? You can find recordings of all the presentations on the FreeSWITCH YouTube channel! Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss the video of this roundtable when it’s posted in the upcoming days.