Technology 6

We are being prepared for artificial design - or as they call it Artificial Intelligence, because they are taking the humanity out of the way we work. They make our jobs based around rules and targets, one way they have been doing this is “quality assurance”. But it isn’t assuring quality it is assuring that the quality that we are used to is the quality of rules and targets. 20 years ago I wrote an M Ed paper on quality, I thought I would discuss it here until I found it was too diverse and academic. It was dreary yet interesting at the same time; although I wrote it I could learn from it now as much I have forgotten. Equally I could expand on what is there and try to remove the dreariness. But the medium is dreary – academia, it is not about a Chautauqua of knowledge and learning as is ZAMM. Pirsig writes ZAMM, a book that is conceivably the most important book on aesthetics for …., and he writes outside academia – and has initial trouble publishing. Doesn’t that say something about academia? Would it have been popular if it had required references to justify “removing hang-ups”? Academia has a methodology, postulate and develop by reference (specified) to others in a way that destroys the readability and joy that is in the challenge of learning. Maybe I will go back to the M Ed although that is proving a little difficult as I was not interested enough to make the website properly at the time, and have lost the conclusion.

What made me think of the M Ed was the issue of Quality Assurance, and compared to 20 years ago teaching now is much more measured by exam success – and ever more so compared to 40 years ago when I started teaching. Quality Assurance required measures, and the measures are so obviously quantifiable exam results. This is so narrow – it is narrow by design. A robot could be designed to deliver and grade exams especially multi-choice. But is there an assurance of quality?

What was interesting about this ISM (ISM is an Independent Study Module as part of my M Ed) was a diverse source of “processes to quality”. There are many that will be met in ZAMM such as removing hang-ups – how does a robot remove hang-ups? How can AI develop these processes to quality? How can they be programmed? They cannot despite what robot intellectuals with their funding might say. But if in our meeting with the world of work we only confront brick walls – “rules mate, sorry more than my job’s worth”, then we are already prepared for automaton responses. AI – social design in preparation for robots to do work that humans should be doing because of their intelligence. How can you have a caring job done by a machine? If those jobs are so tied up with rules and targets and enforced inhumanity, then it is easy to replace them with machines. Few will be aware of this, even those who are primary participants. It is a conspiracy. But don’t be fooled into thinking a conspiracy requires a great White Brotherhood of cigarette-smoking men, it is a conspiracy of social forces dominated by the profit motive for the 1%. And yet this whole conspiracy is fundamentally flawed because 1% profits requires the earnings of the 99%, take away those earnings and where are the profits?

Here is a definition that could place AI in context:-

“Intelligence is that which a computer can never have.”

Imagine if humans had the freedom to embrace that definition and come to learn what it means. Because we would respect intelligence, wouldn’t we?

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