Why a toggle for AI on or off is important.

I am no AI luddite nor do I fear the AI, but for a start its not Artificial, it has huge real world impact, its not Intelligent, its not magic and its not unfathomable, we should stop ascribing human traits to machines, running programmes. AI is useful but it is not the hype machine many would have you believe and we need to be critical about the current approaches to building and using AI.

I estimated just for water needed for my photos to gain alt text on micro.blog with the new AI tool (powered by the blackbox of chatGPT4) This process would need at least 58 litres of water to complete.

2351 photos / 20 = 117.55 bottles 117 * 500ml = 58,500

This doesn’t take into account the fact the query is not just a question but involves machine vision nor have I factored energy use.

Yes I think all my photos should have alt text and am slowly manually adding to a number of them and plan to be more diligent going forward but I dont want to waste water and energy on automating this process at this stage in approaches to AI. Hopefully soon on device LLMs on my iPhone or ways to do this locally on my Mac will automate the process but with considerable less wastage.

cc thanks @adders for related couple of articles and I would also recommend Kate Crawfords Atlas of AI book

Dr. Adam Procter @adamprocter