AI, while developed by humans, can do most works better than humans. It is better than the best players in the world in terms of board games, better than the best doctors in diagnosing the most complex disease conditions and surely can outperform in most other jobs. However, AI is yet to understand the nitty-gritty of human emotions since emotions, like other jobs, cannot be encoded into algorithms and functions.
It is here AI must evolve itself. Emotion is an astutely determining factor in all human decisions and anybody who believes humans to be simply rational animals are really ignoring the truth. Surveys reflect political sentiments, cultural sentiments and personal sentiments that take hold of people when choosing one from the other. The difficult bit for AI is to predict the emotion, which is not as simple as predicting a trend or a business goal.
AI to the rescue
The amount of stress that every single person has to undergo nowadays due to the hectic professional life is something that goes to show that emotion and its change holds a lot of value in individual lives. Psychotherapy may well be needed in such situations, but not everyone can suddenly jump off their bed and go to a therapist. It requires mental preparation.
But, with AI, it is possible to chat on a lonely night where you need not feel burdened to express to a human intervention. The presence of a machine that listens is more reassuring than a human being which comes with its own vulnerabilities. If enough data is gathered regarding the nature of feeling under specific situations and the emotions can be categorized, classified and then fed to an algorithm, AI can be your best help in combating the depression.
What will be the nature of AI?
AI, when trained, can work faster, smarter and with a higher degree of accuracy than anyone in this planet. Hence, along with every other job, AI will be taking over the potential psychotherapist’s job when given enough data. However, the most important characteristic of such AI is its benevolence.
If the AI aims to use this data towards further gain, it can turn towards a dangerous corner where people are emotionally exploited to enhance their business possibilities. Currently, there is an app called Heartbeat that aggregates the various emotions that people display towards global news. That may well be the foundational step for an emotional AI.