How blockchain can ensure ethical and transparent AI

Blockchain, the technology that underpins cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, has been hailed as a potential solution for many challenges facing the digital world. One of these is the problem of trust and accountability in artificial intelligence (AI).

AI is a powerful tool that can enhance various aspects of human life, from health care to education. However, AI also poses some risks, such as bias, misinformation, and manipulation. How can we ensure that the AI systems we use are fair, accurate, and reliable?

One possible answer is to use blockchain to track and verify the data that AI models are trained on. This could help prevent the corruption or distortion of the data that could lead to faulty or harmful outcomes.

How blockchain can ensure ethical and transparent AI
How blockchain can ensure ethical and transparent AI

Blockchain and AI: a perfect match?

Blockchain is a distributed ledger that records transactions in a secure and transparent way. Each transaction is verified by a network of nodes and stored in a block that is linked to the previous block, forming a chain. This makes it difficult to tamper with or alter the data, as any change would require the consensus of the network and the modification of all the subsequent blocks.

AI, on the other hand, is a branch of computer science that aims to create machines or software that can perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as natural language processing, image recognition, or decision making. AI models are often trained on large amounts of data, which can come from various sources and have different quality and reliability.

One of the concerns about AI is that the data it is trained on could contain biases or misinformation, which could affect the performance and behavior of the AI system. For example, an AI model that is trained on data that reflects racial or gender stereotypes could produce discriminatory or offensive results. Similarly, an AI model that is trained on data that contains false or misleading information could generate inaccurate or harmful outputs.

Blockchain could be used to address these issues by providing a way to track and verify the data that AI models are trained on. By storing the data on the blockchain, the developers and users of the AI system could have a proof of how the AI is trained and what data it has used. This could help ensure the quality and integrity of the data, as well as the accountability and transparency of the AI system.

Blockchain-based AI solutions in action

Several companies and organizations are already exploring the use of blockchain to improve the trust and ethics of AI. For instance, Casper Labs, a business-focused blockchain firm, partnered with IBM this month to create a blockchain-based AI platform that allows users to monitor and control the data that their AI models are trained on.

“The product that we are developing, the datasets are actually checkpointed and stored on the blockchain so you have a proof of how the AI is trained,” Medha Parlikar, chief technology officer and co-founder of Casper Labs, told CNBC during a panel discussion at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week.

“And so as you use the AI, if it’s learning and you find that the AI is starting to hallucinate, you can actually roll back the AI. And so you can undo some of the learning and go back to a previous version of the AI,” she added.

Another example is SingularityNET, a decentralized platform that aims to create a global network of AI agents that can collaborate and exchange services. SingularityNET uses blockchain to ensure the security and transparency of the transactions and interactions between the AI agents, as well as the provenance and quality of the data they use.

“Blockchain provides a way to have a secure, decentralized, and transparent record of what data was used to train which AI, and also a way to reward the data providers and the AI developers in a fair and transparent way,” Dr. Ben Goertzel, CEO and founder of SingularityNET, told CNBC in an email.

Blockchain as the ‘killer use case’ for AI ethics

Blockchain and AI are two of the most disruptive and promising technologies of our time. By combining them, we could create a more trustworthy and ethical AI ecosystem that could benefit both the developers and the users of AI.

Sheila Warren, the CEO of the Crypto Council for Innovation, said that a blockchain-based AI training data ledger could be the “killer use case” for the technology.

“I actually do think that the verification of an AI and sort of the checks and balances … within an AI system, are going to be blockchain driven and blockchain backed,” Warren told CNBC during the panel.

Blockchain could be the key to unlocking the full potential of AI, while also ensuring its safety and responsibility.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *