# Thoughts about AI

## Don't Pretend Social Problems are Technical Ones

It is always tempting to translate a problem from a domain where it seems intractable into a domain where it seems manageable. I think back to the first time I learned about the Laplace transform, a seemingly magical mathematical move that lets you transform a complicated calculus problem into a manageable algebra one. It's a key move in engineering. But sometimes the translation deforms the original problem beyond recognition. Technochauvinism is the idea that the most advanced technology is inherently the best (or even only) response available. That just isn't so! In some of my other work, I've encountered the social change wheel, which is just one alternative model for how to respond to certain kinds of problems. There is much more to say, but perhaps this is enough to nudge us out of complacency for the moment. I urge you to sit with uncertainty for a time.

## Voices to Amplify

- Ruha Benjamin, Race After Technology
- Joy Buolamwini, Unmasking AI
- Meredith Broussard, Artificial Unintelligence
- Safiya Noble, Algorithms of Oppression
- Virginia Eubanks, Automating Inequality
- Stochastic Parrots Day Reading List

### Further reading

- Ted Striphas, Algorithmic Culture Before the Internet
- Nick Polson and James Scott, AIQ: How People and Machines are Smarter Together
- Geoff Colvin, Humans Are Underrated
- Luke Dormehl, The Formlula
- Frank Pasquale, The Black Box Society
- Ed Finn, What Algorithms Want
- Sara Wachter-Boettcher, Technically Wrong
- Cathy O'Neil, Weapons of Math Destruction
- Taina Bucher, If...Then