An important point that people seem to be missing

So it will be with larger applications. The very point is that they note and act upon patterns – ones that we can’t see, that we don’t know why are happening. Just as with markets – we might not know why the price of apples has risen, but we’re all getting the information that they have and are acting according to that incentive. The desire to audit all algorithms is missing the very point of having them at all.

AI has to be based on real-world information flowing in. For any result to be useful, the system must operate on the same rules as the real world, imperfections and all, and the very point of our doing all of this is to do what we ourselves cannot.

Any attempts to insist on full audits, moral compliance and preferred data aren’t just going to fail – they’re missing the entire point of the exercise.

9 thoughts on “An important point that people seem to be missing”

  1. Maritime Barbarian

    Wasn’t there a minor furore a year or two ago, when it was found that Moslems paid more for car insurance?
    Computers had noted that drivers with Mohammed on their licence made more claims. Boosting the risk factor on their premiums.
    The insurance company hadn’t programmed it. The AI discovered it.

  2. Surreptitious Evil

    And, of course, unless the state of the art is much better than it was when I was an active participant, knowing how the AI algorithm works is fine (or, at least, practical) with a rules-based system. With a neural network of any complexity, especially one which continues to learn (as most effective ones do), it is impractical to the point of impossibility.

  3. @ MB
    People named Mohammed were youger on average – younger drivers have more claims.
    It wasn’t anti-Muslim – it was just age-related.

  4. It’s well-known that female drivers have fewer accidents than their male equivalents. But thanks to the EU, they have to pay the same premiums (see also under life assurance).

  5. @Chris Miller:

    I could easily be wrong, but I understood that female drivers have more accidents, but male drivers have much more expensive accidents. Hence the cheaper premiums for women. If it weren’t for the EU….
    .

  6. @ Chris Miller October 4, 2018 at 6:01 pm

    @ Nick Burton October 4, 2018 at 7:01 pm

    Post 29 March 2019 headline:

    “Women drivers pay lower car insurance despite Brexit.”

    DP

  7. Bloke in North Dorset

    “Women drivers pay lower car insurance despite Brexit.”

    As Mrs BiND perceptively pointed out – women’s insurance won’t go down, men’s will go up.

  8. ‘AI has to be based on real-world information flowing in. For any result to be useful, the system must operate on the same rules as the real world, imperfections and all, and the very point of our doing all of this is to do what we ourselves cannot.’

    Climate phrenologists tell us they have models that mimic the earth’s atmosphere, and can predict future weather.

    They don’t even know what they don’t know about the earth’s atmosphere. They often report the consensus multiple GCMs, “the average of 25 models.” The average of crap is . . . .

    “I do not believe in the collective wisdom of
    individual ignorance.” – Thomas Carlyle

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