On the Media-political Dimension of Artificial Intelligence

Deep Learning as a Black Box and OpenAI

Andreas Sudmann

Abstract

The essay critically investigates the media-political dimension of modern AI technology. Rather than examining the political aspects of certain AI-driven applications, the main focus of the paper is centred around the political implications of AI’s technological infrastructure, especially with regard to the machine learning approach that since around 2006 has been called Deep Learning (also known as the simulation of Artificial Neural Networks). Firstly, the paper discusses in how far Deep Learning is a fundamentally opaque black box technology, only partially accessible to human understanding. Secondly, and in relation to the first question, the essay takes a critical look at the agenda and activities of the research company OpenAI that supposedly aims to promote the democratization of AI and tries to make technologies like Deep Learning more accessible and transparent.

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