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HomeBalkansOK Computer: Romania Debuts ‘World’s First’ AI Government Adviser

OK Computer: Romania Debuts ‘World’s First’ AI Government Adviser

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Ion will synthesize concerns submitted by citizens into reports for the government to consider.

Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă surprised his Cabinet on Wednesday by introducing them to a new member — run completely on artificial intelligence.

Ciucă introduced the new “honorary adviser” called Ion to the rest of his ministers in a demonstration, with a face and words appearing on a digital screen, responding to the prime minister’s prompts along with a computerized voice.

Ion was developed by Romanian researchers and will use artificial intelligence to “quickly and automatically capture the opinions and desires” submitted by Romanian citizens, Ciucă said.

“We are talking about the first government adviser to use artificial intelligence,” both nationally and internationally, he said.

Romanians will be able to send their ideas through an accompanying website (ion.gov.ro) as well as on social media and some in-person locations. Ion will then synthesize their contributions for the government to consider, according to the coordinator of the research team, Nicu Sebe. Users won’t, however, receive a response from Ion itself.

Instead, Research and Innovation Minister Sebastian Burduja, whose office is overseeing the project, explained that Ion will analyze the information it receives and draw up reports about Romanians’ priorities.

Ciucă urged citizens and the government to view participation in the project not as an option, but as an “obligation” to ensure “close and timely” communication.

But Kris Shrishak, a technology fellow at the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, said this technology should be used with caution, raising questions about how Ion will choose what it considers to be a priority from the messages it receives.

“This should be explained to the public,” Shrishak said.

Source: Politico

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