La Voz de Galicia – June 2, 2023 →

Cristina PatoI always prefer to avoid talking about politics because, for example, in a place as complex as Ourense, anything can happen, whether imaginable or unimaginable…So for today’s column, I thought to focus in other relevant headlines this week, but I am either feeling rather pessimistic or I was simply unable to find an inspiring piece of news. Between the press release of the Center for AI Safety’s (a prominent group of artificial intelligence researchers) and the report emitted by the Earth Commission (and published in Nature magazine) about the dangers the planet is facing, one can’t stop wondering about what, exactly, is the future? How much time are we talking about when we talk about the future in these contexts?

The Center for AI Safety, whose mission it is to «reduce the risks on a social scale of artificial intelligence» warned that «the risk of extinction» of AI is comparable to that «of pandemic and nuclear war.» And the team of scientists at Earth Commission wonder about «which environmental limits we should not cross to safeguard a planet able to support the wellbeing of humans» because we are «pushing the planet towards an irreversible point of no return.»

And it is here when I begin to think about the true meaning of all those keywords that are repeated when we talk about climate change or AI: future, human well-being, extinction…And also about the complex messages constructed around them because even if one wants to assume one’s own responsibility, sometimes the fear they can transmit could lead to paralysis, indolence, impotence…or to ask what are our particular individual limits to be able to be in the world.

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