January 31, 2020

Do Russians Dream of Electric Sheep?


Do Russians Dream of Electric Sheep?
Fun fact: the 1921 Italian movie "The Mechanical Man" was the first film to feature a fight between robots. AlejandroLinaresGarcia, Wikimedia Commons

A recent survey of Russians has found that, despite widespread knowledge of artificial intelligence (AI), few understand the technology itself.

The study, conducted by VTsIOM (ВЦИОМ, the Russian Public Opinion Research Center), records that 75% of Russians have heard of AI. However, only 29% were able to define it, while 38% could name its applications. 

Overall, though, Russian opinions towards AI are positive, with only 12% of respondents reporting negative feelings towards the technology, and 68% unconvinced that AI will take their jobs.

By contrast, Americans tend to be more apprehensive. But we, too, are a little confused. So until we come to a consensus of what we should look out for, be wary of Alexa saying something like, "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."

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