Artificial intelligence is an epochal change in the paradigm of human beings. Machines that “think” are a novelty that we will have to learn to become familiar with. They are also a great opportunity, with an extremely significant impact on the world of work: it is estimated that, in the USA, 80% of jobs will be modified considerably due to AI. 

Of course, there is, however, an ongoing heated debate on this subject. A very wide audience of subjects is intrigued by the novelty, but operators rightly wonder about its benefits, risks and practical and philosophical implications. 

Artificial intelligence offers the possibility of making an infinite number of processes more efficient, especially those that are easier to automate. The ability to process a large amount of data and information can speed up the process and reduce or eliminate the margin of error. It is clear that it can be used in a large number of areas. Amongst these, for example, is cyber security. 

In fact, with AI, the number of cyberattacks has essentially doubled, from over 560 per second globally to around 1,290 per second (Source: RSA Conference 2023). However, artificial intelligence itself is also a defence weapon, given that strategies based on monitoring, detection and response are more advanced and, in particular, that the ability to anticipate events has increased, thus automating the identification of any suspicious behaviour. 

As fascinating as the practical application is, a crucial aspect of the debate concerns the interaction between human intelligence and artificial intelligence. In fact, we must consider that, like all technologies, AI also evolves at a much faster rate than the human adaptation times and, therefore, the way in which we relate to this tool requires careful evaluation. 

How will this balance out? I share the opinion of those who see artificial intelligence as a support to humans in order to supplement their work and increase their effectiveness, rather than as a substitute for human intelligence. 

We will have to study it, ask ourselves the right questions and acquire the necessary skills in order to have an active approach to the use of this epochal novelty and not to be simple spectators and passive users who delegate thought to a machine. AI’s way of “thinking” is inevitably mechanistic and therefore limited, compared with our ability to understand the context and its nuances. 

However, it is an opportunity for knowledge and a unique opportunity for reflection, firstly, on an individual level and, secondly, also more generally on the role of the human being in the contemporary era. We need to be aware that our action of direction and control will continue to be irreplaceable. Because, after all, artificial intelligence is not as “intelligent” as it seems at first glance and, in any case, it cannot exist without human thought and action. 

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