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Coevolution of practice: AI

In the ancient game of Go, a blend of strategic pattern recognition and an appreciation for aesthetic harmony is essential. This blend, deeply rooted in tradition, was recently challenged by an unlikely contender: artificial intelligence. When AI took on Go, it didn't just win; it reshaped our understanding of the game. The pivotal moment was 'Move 37', a play so unconventional that it left human commentators bewildered. This move was more than a surprise; it was a revelation of how AI can illuminate paths previously unseen by the human mind.

Lee Sedol (currently retired) was an international Go master with lots of international titles.

The 'alien move' in Go symbolizes a broader pattern emerging across various fields: AI's ability to identify gaps in human knowledge and suggest novel solutions. This marks a significant shift in our interaction with technology and the environment. This phenomenon, known as the 'Coevolution of Practice', is not new. History is replete with technological breakthroughs, like the printing press and electrification, that have transformed societies. However, AI brings a new dimension to this evolution by altering not just our capabilities but also our decision-making processes.

As we stand at the brink of 2024, we anticipate the rise of a new breed of decision-makers. These individuals will excel in harnessing AI to uncover 'alien moves' in their fields, integrating groundbreaking insights into their strategies. This shift is already manifesting in various domains, where AI is leading to extraordinary discoveries:

  • In the realm of material science, AI has facilitated the discovery of millions of new materials, opening up unprecedented possibilities in manufacturing and engineering (DeepMind Blog).

  • The pharmaceutical industry is witnessing a revolution, with AI aiding in the discovery of new drugs, potentially transforming healthcare and treatment protocols (Nature).

  • Even in the esoteric world of physics, AI is proposing alternative frameworks, challenging our fundamental understanding of the universe (SciTechDaily).

However, this acceleration of innovation is not without its challenges. A significant limitation lies in the quality and quantity of data available for AI training. The effectiveness of AI in generating novel ideas is directly linked to the richness of the data it analyzes. As we move forward, the need for robust, diverse, and high-quality datasets becomes increasingly crucial.

And do not forget that Lee Sedol eventually quit playing the Go as he could not compete with AI. Similarly, we have no choice - we either learn how to use it - or we will be outcompeted.

In conclusion, as we navigate this wave of disruptions, our approach to problem-solving and innovation is undergoing a fundamental transformation. AI is not just a tool; it's a partner in our intellectual journey, pushing the boundaries of what we consider possible. The 'alien moves' are just the beginning. The true impact of AI will be in how we adapt to and integrate these new perspectives, shaping a future that is as unpredictable as it is exciting.


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