Generative AI: likely trends in 2024

Nan Nelson, Envision Board Member and Economic Transformation Signals Team

In 2022, Thomas Frey was our keynote speaker at World Futures Day here in Green Bay. Today he is examining artificial intelligence (AI) trends to watch for in 2024.  He warns that “With prudent planning, generative AI can drive positive workforce transformation. But neglecting to develop the human capital to extract AI’s full value risks misuse, distrust, and widening inequality.”

Concerning impact on the workplace, Frey says: “New positions like prompt engineers, AI trainers, model interpreters, and tool explainers are already rising in demand. Skilled communicators who can distill complex business needs into natural language instructions suited for AI will also see significant opportunities. Technical roles developing user interfaces that build confidence in AI systems will similarly grow.

“Education and policy will need to emphasize these emerging skills while strengthening timeless human abilities like relationship-building, empathy, and holistic thinking. Life-long learning to stay ahead of AI’s evolving capabilities will be crucial.

Organizations that view their employees as partners in navigating this AI transition rather than costs to eventually eliminate will likely gain an edge through knowledge retention and human-AI collaboration.
Read Frey’s full article about the eight trends, including commentary on election meddling, content creation, reshaping manufacturing and business workflows, and more.

An electric fire truck in green bay’s future?

Green Bay’s Metro Fire Department is considering buying an electric fire truck. Such vehicles are reported to be much quieter than the traditional truck and exude no fumes. The elimination of background noise might improve the scene, making radios and shouts unnecessary. This electric truck could pump water continuously for four hours on a single battery charge. Electric fire trucks cost more than standard trucks, of course, so funding options would have to be explored.

Is that your voice – or is it AI?

Nan Nelson, Envision Board Member and Economic Transformation Signals Team

A new startup is using AI to make non-English call center employees, who are often located in India, Pakistan or the Philippines, sound American. Founded in 2020, Sanas now provides companies with a proprietary AI software that works in real-time to alter users’ voices to sound more “Western.” Its aim is to “improve human-to-human relationships,” but critics argue the plan is fraught with ethical and psychological implications. Some say it puts the onus on non-Westerners to cater to Western interests. Read more here.