Keith Whitfield, president of the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, is available to chat with all 31,000 students at any hour of the day or night—as long as they don’t mind talking to a digital version of him. The public research university recently unveiled the digital President Whitfield , an artificial intelligence and online avatar that can answer more than 1,000 questions about hundreds of university-related topics. Whitfield and the developers at AI Media Lab, the Nevada-based company that built the AI and avatar, hope the digital president will serve as a resource for students, employees and potential applicants.Inside Higher Ed “UNLV President Turns Himself into an AI“
Here we have a digital AI version of the president of a college.
I see one major drawback to “training” AI bots of this type (and why I don't use it for AI blog writing either) – if people think someone is you — are you responsible for what is said? What if someone hacks your AI-alternate persona? What if your AI is too good and answers questions better than you do and you defer to the AI tool? (And could this prop people up who perhaps are past their cognitive ability to hold such a job?)
There are ethical issues that go with this as well. I'm just not sure we've completely thought through the use of AI -personas. I do know that there has been a conversation for some time about training AI bots to go to meetings for people and sadly if an AI-bot can effectively represent you in a meeting, I'd argue that no real creative problem solving is happening in that meeting. If a meeting is pointless and only one person is talking, it should be a video, not a meeting.
This “AI College President” will be something I discuss with my students, for sure as we discuss ethics and artificial intelligence.
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