Hello, I'm Anthony Butler.
This is my site where I frequently write about the impact of emerging technologies, such as blockchain and artificial intelligence, on societies and economies. I am currently Chief Technology Officer for IBM in the Middle East and Africa and was appointed as an IBM Distinguished Engineer mostly for my work in blockchain and cloud technologies.
I live in and am focused on supporting the development of one of the most exciting and future-oriented places in the world – the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
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AI might not take jobs but it will take tasks
Artificial intelligence (AI) and specifically Large Language Models (LLMs) are what is defined in the economics literature, as a General Purpose Technology. These are specific classes of technology that demonstrate improvements over time, become pervasive throughout the economy, and typically lead to the spawning of complementary innovations and positive spillover
On impossible grammars and Large Language Models
The interest in Large Language Models (LLMs) has led to a resurgence of popular interest in cognitive science. One of the interesting questions that come up is whether these models understand language; that is, whether they have developed some form of cognitive ability. The results of models such as GPT4
Artificial intelligence and moral panics
It has been interesting to observe the moral panic that has emerged around artificial intelligence; much of it accelerated by the appearance of ChatGPT. Whilst there are different flavours, such as the "AI will destroy our jobs" canard, the most extreme concerns seem to relate to the "AI alignment" problem: