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No, AI isn't going to steal your job, but it will change it - and here's how

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John Larsen
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Perhaps those scared about the potential of AI don't realise that it already plays an admittedly somewhat basic role in our lives already, with applications ranging from virtual assistants built into smartphones to increasingly sophisticated driverless car technology.

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"In the service sector, many jobs may well be more readily done using some of these computational techniques," said Professor Philip Nelson, chair of Research Councils UK, who pointed to healthcare and surgical robotics as a particular area where AI could become a "very important technology" for staff.

"So what you want to be able to do is to have computers to help you understand that and make decisions -- not to replace humans but to work in partnership, make suggestions.

However, when the internet was a relatively new phenomenon we were told that it could potentially result in mass unemployment -- but that didn't happen.

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"There are many indicators because the biggest potential for AI is as collaborators which provide additional power which can make those people more productive by having a more interactive system which can effectively communicate with them and improve productivity," he said, suggesting that AI won't be smart enough anytime soon to think on the abstract level required for many office roles -- and Professor Jennings agreed.

Labour MP Graham Stringer asked the panel if advancement in AI could mean the apocalyptic events of The Terminator could come to pass.

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John Larsen
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