Shaping the Future of AI Responsibly

This blog post was originally published at Qualcomm’s website. It is reprinted here with the permission of Qualcomm.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has taken the world by storm, revolutionizing industries, and transforming the way we live and work. But as AI continues to advance, it is crucial that we prioritize responsible AI practices to ensure a future that is not only technologically advanced but also safe, ethical and sustainable.

Responsible AI is more than just a buzzword; it is an imperative. At Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., we believe that responsible AI is the key to unlocking the full potential of this transformative technology while safeguarding the interests of individuals and society.

One of the core principles of responsible AI is privacy and security. As AI systems collect and analyze vast amounts of data, it is essential to protect individuals’ privacy rights and ensure the security of sensitive information. By prioritizing privacy and security in AI technologies, we can build trust with users and stakeholders, fostering a sustainable ecosystem that respects individuals’ privacy rights and safeguards their data.

Our on-device AI solutions at Qualcomm Technologies are designed with user security and privacy protection considerations in mind, to enable a more trustworthy AI ecosystem. On-device AI keeps the user’s queries and personal information on the device, granting users greater control over their information; and by avoiding additional data copies stored in remote clouds — beyond the user’s direct oversight, it enhances protection against unauthorized access or use.

In addition to protections for the individual user, our on-device AI helps protect company confidential information. For example, a code generating assistant could run on the device without exposing confidential information to a cloud — addressing a concern already faced by companies today.

Transparency is another critical aspect of responsible AI. AI systems should provide appropriate levels of information about their intended use, capabilities and limitations. By promoting transparency, we can foster trust and enable users to make informed decisions about AI technologies, ensuring that they align with their values and expectations.

Qualcomm Technologies, in collaboration with Truepic and the Coalition for Content Provenance and Authenticity (C2PA), is advancing the way we verify the authenticity of photos. Using our Snapdragon platforms, this cutting-edge technology creates a cryptographic seal around photos taken with a smartphone. This seal not only includes essential metadata like date, time and location, but also can verify if AI was utilized and the specific type employed. For instance, if generative AI was used to manipulate the image, the digital seal can accurately detect it. Even during the transfer of the image to another device, the certificate remains intact, ensuring the preservation of its integrity. This collaboration exemplifies our commitment to transparency and upholding the integrity of content in the era of generative AI.

But it doesn’t stop there. Environmental sustainability is a pressing concern in the era of AI. AI systems can consume significant amounts of energy, contributing to carbon emissions and environmental impact. However, there is a way to address this challenge by adopting a hybrid approach that combines both cloud and edge device processing.

By shifting a larger share of AI workloads to the edge, we can benefit from the advantages of on-device AI processing, which provides high-performance computations while consuming minimal power. This balanced approach, with a strategic distribution of AI workloads between the cloud and edge, can optimize the performance per watt and reduce overall energy usage.

Responsible AI is not a solo endeavor. Collaborations are key to shaping the future of AI. We actively engage with industry partners, standards bodies and regulatory agencies to establish guidelines and best practices for responsible AI. By working together, we can ensure that AI benefits humanity while upholding ethical standards.

For instance, Qualcomm Technologies has joined industry partners like Anthropic, Google, Intel, Meta, Microsoft, NVIDIA, and OpenAI as an inaugural member of the MLCommons AI Safety working group. This industry collaboration aims to guide worldwide efforts and ensure the responsible development of AI technologies. One of the key objectives is to support end-user decision making by providing community-standard AI safety tests and benchmarks. Qualcomm complements this industry effort with participation in AI standards initiatives in international, regional and national standards bodies.

The development of global, consensus-driven AI safety standards plays a crucial role in providing a common guiding compass for the entire AI ecosystem. By working together in an open manner at both global and local levels, the industry is not only paving the way for a safer AI ecosystem but also bringing in a greater sense of transparency and accountability to AI systems.

In conclusion, responsible AI is the compass that guides us towards a future that is both technologically advanced and ethically sound. By prioritizing issues such as privacy, transparency and environmental sustainability, we can harness the power of AI to drive positive change. As individuals, organizations and societies, we have the duty to embrace responsible AI and shape its trajectory for the benefit of all.

Durga Malladi
SVP and GM, Technology Planning and Edge Solutions, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

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