As technology continues to evolve and become more integrated with our daily lives, it’s also become more embedded in popular culture.

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SwissCognitiveWhile some TV shows and movies successfully portray technology like artificial intelligence, others don’t always take the time to explain the nuances of tech—or if they do, it’s not always accurate.

For non-tech people who glean much of their tech knowledge from pop culture, this can lead to a lot of misinformation. That’s why we asked the members of Forbes Technology Council to clear a few things up. Below they share 12 things pop culture gets wrong about AI, and what the public should know instead.

1. AI Can Do Anything A Human Can

AI will always have a level of containment, as it’s constrained to what we’re running it on. While AI can be trained to do specific tasks, it still needs human coaching to ensure the data is interpreted correctly. So, the idea that AI can do the same tasks a human can—it’s just not there today. – James Litton , Identity Automation.

2. AI Is Magic

AI is not magic like it’s shown in pop culture. AI is teamwork and needs lots of data, understanding and experience of the problem and industry—and a lot of patience. – Mahesh Sudhakaran , IBM 

3. All Human Jobs Will Be Taken Over By AI

There is a stigma that AI is “out to get your job.” However, AI, chatbots, computer vision, robotics and more enable us to be more productive and let us do what we do best—tasks that require critical thinking, judgment and creativity. AI is a valuable tool that provides deep, personalized insights about the customer, enabling us to use our judgment to provide an amazing customer experience. – Bhaskar Roy, Workato

4. General AI Is Highly Advanced

I think pop culture confuses non-tech folks on the advancement of general AI. Most AI depicted in pop culture is a very advanced form of general AI, and when non-tech businesspeople see AI applied within their organization (especially with chatbots and natural language processing), they are very underwhelmed. What has gotten better in the last three to five years is domain-specific AI and the training methods around it. – Brian Sathianathan,

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5. AI Is Just Machine Learning

One thing that is poorly understood is the complexity of AI solutions, as multiple technologies are needed to deliver a powerful AI experience. AI encompasses a wide spectrum of tech, including machine learning, hardware, speech recognition, robotic process automation, analytics, etc. More to the point, the alignment between teams that own different areas of these technologies is also crucial to success. – Tanvir Bhangoo, Freshii inc.

6. You Can Program AI Once And It’s Good To Go

AI is the science of making intelligent programs from knowledge, logic and learning. It is most effective if there are large amounts of data and a clearly defined mathematical model. It is not as easy as seen in the movies. A true AI solution, capable of freeing up humans for more advanced or complex roles, is very resource-intensive to develop and must gradually learn and evolve over time. – Michael Xie, Fortinet […]


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