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California announces investments in artificial intelligence

LOS ANGELES — California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order this week, investing in artificial intelligence. 

The order lays out a plan to study the development, tools and risks that artificial intelligence poses. 

Newsom said the goal is to shape the future of ethical, transparent and trustworthy AI. 

“This is a potentially transformative technology — comparable to the advent of the internet — and we’re only scratching the surface of understanding what GenAI is capable of,” Newsom said. 

Experts in the field feel the same way. Dr. Shrikanth Narayanan is a professor at USC focussing on AI advancements in the medical field. He is currently using artificial intelligence to study mental health. 

“AI has gone beyond gadgets and technology that we create for personal entertainment or communication, but also impacting profound societal needs,” Narayanan said. 

He also acknowledged that the world today is at a sort of reckoning with artificial intelligence. Narayanan said the only way through this period is by having active dialogue. 

“We have to be honest about where it works and about what some of the possibilites are for bettering the world, but not only the capability bounds but also the sort of underside it,” he said. 

The technology is also causing fears in the entertainment industry. Actors and writers on strike raised concerns about the potential use of artificial intelligence in film and television. 

“We’re concerned that they’re going to take this technology and not compensate us fairly, and/or not get the consent that we asked for,” said Ben Keller, actor and SAG-AFTRA union member. 

Keller has been striking outside of the Netflix studio in Hollywood for several months, fighting for what he says is a fair deal. 

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