Since the turn of the century, there has been an exponential increase in the creation and management of data. Technologies that can sift, analyse and deploy this growing wealth of digital information are being rapidly adopted across government and business, as well as by consumers themselves. Artificial intelligence now promises to transform the application of these resources.
The effect will be highly disruptive to existing ways of doing things, but promises huge opportunities for consumers and for the entrepreneurs that realise their dreams. The argument that artificial intelligence will cause mass unemployment is as unpersuasive as the argument that threshing machines, machine tools, dishwashers or computers would cause mass unemployment. “The bogeyman of automation consumes worrying capacity that should be saved for real problems,” said the economist Herbert Simon in the 1960s.