A.I. Systems Echo Biases They’re Fed, Putting Scientists on Guard
A year ago Google reported a breakthrough artificial intelligence technology called BERT. BERT, which is used in Google’s internet search engine, learns from digitized information like Wikipedia entries, news articles, and old books. This presents an issue that has caught the attention of security researchers and experts who claim BERT could be picking up on and mimicking biases that are found in the sources it learns from — potentially decades of biases. This could bring old biases into new technology.
BERT doesn’t give women equal credit to men and is more likely to associate men with computer programming. As A.I. continues to expand into new domains and products, unexpected biases continue to be discovered. Computer scientist Robert Munro fed 100 commonly used words into BERT, and in 99/100 cases BERT associated the words with men. Words like “money,” “house,” and “action” were associated with men while one word was associated with women — “mom.” This historical gender bias could continue to perpetuate today’s society through A.I. technology like BERT.
This topic of AI system bias is one we have reported on extensively at OODALoop. For AI to really deliver full value to enterprises and governments and citizens solutions to these and other issues (including security and explainability) will need to be mitigated. For tips and techniques on mitigating risks of AI solutions see the following OODALoop special reports:
- AI Security: Four Things to Focus on Right Now – This is the only security framework we have seen that helps prevent AI issues before they develop
- A Decision-Maker’s Guide to Artificial Intelligence – This plain english overview will give you the insights you need to drive corporate decisions
- When Artificial Intelligence Goes Wrong – By studying issues we can help mitigate them
- Artificial Intelligence for Business Advantage – The reason we use AI in business is to accomplish goals. Here are best practices for doing just that
- The Future of AI Policy is Largely Unwritten – Congressman Will Hurd provides insight on the emerging technologies of AI and Machine Learning.
- AI Will Test American Values In The Battlefield – How will military leaders deal with AI that may treat troops as expendable assets to win the “game”.