DEV Community

Cover image for Will AI Replace Us? 🤖 🫨
Best Codes
Best Codes

Posted on • Updated on

Will AI Replace Us? 🤖 🫨

Will AI Replace Us?

We've all thought about that question. Will AI replace us?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a rapidly evolving field that has the potential to change many aspects of human life, from health care to entertainment. But as AI becomes more powerful and ubiquitous, some people may wonder if it will eventually replace humans in certain domains or even pose an existential threat to humanity. In this article, we will explore some arguments for and against the idea that AI will replace us, and offer some creative and unique perspectives on the future of human-AI coexistence (or, as some might think, AI-human oppression).

Understanding what AI is not

Before we can discuss whether AI will replace us, we need to understand what AI is and what it is not. AI is a broad and multidisciplinary field that encompasses various subfields, such as machine learning, computer vision, natural language processing, robotics, and more. AI is also a diverse and dynamic field that evolves with new discoveries, innovations, and applications. However, AI is not a monolithic or static entity that has a single definition, purpose, or goal.

What AI is not:

  • AI is not a single technology, but a collection of technologies and systems that can perform different tasks and functions, such as recognizing faces, playing games, or driving cars. AI systems can vary in their complexity, architecture, and performance, depending on the data, algorithms, and hardware that they use. AI systems can also be integrated or combined with other technologies or systems, such as sensors, networks, or platforms, to create more advanced or hybrid solutions.

  • AI is not a human or a machine, but a human-made artifact that can simulate some aspects of human intelligence, such as learning, reasoning, and communicating. AI systems can be inspired by human biology, psychology, or sociology, but they are not equivalent, to humans in their nature, structure, or function. AI systems can also interact with and influence humans.

  • AI is not a friend or a foe, but a tool that can help or harm humans depending on how it is designed, used, and regulated. AI systems may have positive or negative impacts on various domains and dimensions, such as economy, environment, culture, and more. AI systems possess the capability to produce both intended and unintended outcomes, such as advantages, risks, or obstacles. AI systems may be aligned with or opposed to human values or goals, but they do not have intrinsic values of their own.

AI Is NOT a physical robot:

Typical misconception of an AI

AI is NOT just chatbots (although this article will focus on Text Generation AI, or chatbots):

Chatbot image

AI IS a Code on a Computer:

Neural Network

With that out of the way, let's jump right in.

AI won't replace us because of its limitations

One of the main reasons why AI likely won't replace humans altogether is because of it's natural limitations that prevent it from achieving human-like intelligence and capabilities.

Some of these limitations are:

  • AI lacks common sense and causal reasoning. AI systems can perform well on specific tasks that involve pattern recognition, such as image classification or natural language processing, but they struggle with tasks that require common sense and causal reasoning, such as understanding jokes, metaphors, or sarcasm. AI also cannot explain why something happens or how to fix a problem, unlike humans, who can use causal models to infer and intervene in complex situations.

For proof of this, let's ask a common AI a typical joke and see what we get:

An AI flops at understanding a joke XD

Obviously, the joke is not funny because Cinderella neglects her chores! We find it humorous because it plays on the double meaning of “running away from the ball.” In one sense, it refers to Cinderella's tendency to flee from the ballroom in the fairy tale. In the other sense, it's a soccer pun, suggesting that Cinderella was bad at soccer because she kept physically running away from the soccer ball on the field. The humor comes from the clever wordplay.

  • AI lacks creativity and innovation. AI systems can generate novel outputs based on existing data, such as text, images, or music, but they cannot create something truly original or innovative that goes beyond the data. AI also cannot appreciate the aesthetic or emotional value of its creations, unlike humans, who can express and enjoy their creativity and innovation.

  • AI lacks ethics and morality. AI systems can follow rules and objectives that are predefined by humans, but they cannot make moral judgments or decisions that involve values, principles, or consequences. AI also cannot understand or respect the rights, dignity, or autonomy of humans or other living beings, unlike humans who can act ethically and morally.

AI will benefit us if used correctly

AI can enhance and complement human abilities and activities instead of replacing them, which is another reason why it is unlikely to replace us.

Some of the benefits of AI include:

  • AI has the ability to enhance human intelligence and productivity. It assists humans in performing tasks that are tedious, repetitive, or complex, such as data analysis, translation, or diagnosis. Additionally, AI aids humans in learning new skills, acquiring new knowledge, or solving new problems by providing personalized feedback, recommendations, or solutions.

  • AI contributes to improving human well-being and quality of life. It supports humans in achieving their goals, fulfilling their needs, or satisfying their preferences by providing convenient, efficient, or customized services, products, or experiences. AI also helps humans cope with challenges, risks, or uncertainties by providing reliable, accurate, or timely information, advice, or assistance.

  • AI promotes human collaboration and diversity. It facilitates human communication, interaction, and cooperation by enabling cross-cultural, cross-lingual, or cross-domain exchange, understanding, or coordination.

But, AI will replace us if we let it!

Whether or not AI will replace us depends on how we design, use, and regulate AI. AI is not inherently good or bad, but it can have positive or negative impacts depending on the choices and actions of humans.

Here are some of the factors that can influence the outcome of human-AI coexistence:

  • AI alignment and governance. It is important for AI systems to be aligned with human values and goals, and to be governed by human laws and norms. This ensures that they are safe, trustworthy, and beneficial for humans and society. In order to achieve this, multiple stakeholders, such as developers, users, regulators, and experts, can be involved to monitor, audit, or intervene in AI systems when necessary.

  • AI education and awareness. It is crucial for AI systems to be transparent, explainable, and understandable. Additionally, humans should be educated and aware of the capabilities, limitations, and implications of AI. This ensures that they can effectively and responsibly use, interact, or coexist with AI. Various methods, such as curricula, media, or campaigns, can be employed to inform, empower, or engage humans of different ages, backgrounds, or interests.

  • AI ethics and responsibility. AI systems need to be ethical, moral, and accountable. Humans should take responsibility for the outcomes and impacts of AI to ensure that they respect, protect, and promote the rights, dignity, and autonomy of humans and other living beings. Various principles, such as fairness, privacy, or sustainability, can guide, constrain, or evaluate the behavior and performance of AI systems and humans.

AI will replace certain human jobs because of its efficiency and capability

One of the main reasons why AI will replace some human jobs is because it can perform many tasks faster, cheaper, and better than humans, thanks to its efficiency and capability. Some of the advantages of AI over humans are:

  • AI can process large amounts of data and information, and perform complex calculations and analyses, with high speed, accuracy, and reliability. AI can also learn from data and improve its performance over time, without human intervention or supervision.
  • AI can operate 24/7, without fatigue, boredom, or distraction. AI can also adapt to different environments and conditions, and handle multiple tasks and functions, without human assistance or coordination.
  • AI can perform tasks that are dangerous, difficult, or impossible for humans, such as exploring space, detecting landmines, or diagnosing diseases. AI can also perform tasks that are beyond human capabilities, such as generating realistic images, composing music, or playing chess.

According to a report by Goldman Sachs, AI could replace the equivalent of 300 million full-time jobs by 2030, across various sectors and regions. Another report by the World Economic Forum estimated that AI will replace some 85 million jobs by 2025, mainly in the fields of data entry, accounting, customer service, and administration.

AI will not replace some human jobs because it is complementary to them

AI will not replace some human jobs is because it can complement and augment human skills and abilities, and create new opportunities and possibilities for human work. Some of the benefits of AI for humans are:

  • AI can assist and support humans in performing tasks that are tedious, repetitive, or complex, such as data analysis, translation, or diagnosis. AI may also help humans learn new skills, acquire new knowledge, or solve new problems, by providing personalized feedback, recommendations, or solutions.
  • AI has the ability to improve and enhance human productivity, quality, and innovation, by enabling faster, cheaper, and better outcomes and outputs. AI also can enable new products, services, and experiences that cater to human needs, preferences, or aspirations.
  • AI may foster and facilitate human collaboration, communication, and creativity, by enabling cross-cultural, cross-lingual, or cross-domain exchange, understanding, or coordination. It can also help humans appreciate, respect, and celebrate their diversity, identity, or culture.

According to a report by the World Economic Forum, AI will create 97 million jobs worldwide by 2025, mainly in the fields of data analysis, engineering, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence. Another report by stated that AI will create new vocations and help solve complex problems and make our daily lives easier and more convenient.


I think this comment by @clovisdanielss sums up a lot of my thoughts quite nicely:

Actually, to be lazy is bad, not AI. AI is just a tool. People are not ready to use this kind of tool, but this is another discussion.

When you say that AI can destroy our future, is a statement that was said by other people in other contexts, with Google, calculator, and other tools.

Also, I do not believe that AI will do the same job that programmers do today as some CEOs are trying to sell This belief comes from ideology, not science. I do not think that AI will ever replace humanity. It can not be trained by its own output, so AI will always depend on humans to work.

In my perception, there is no such thing as "war against AIs", we don't fight tools, we just use them.

In conclusion, AI will not replace us, but it will change us, for better or worse, depending on how we create, use, and control it. AI is a powerful and promising technology that can offer many opportunities and challenges for human-AI coexistence. We should embrace AI as a partner, not a competitor, and leverage its strengths, while compensating for its weaknesses. We should also be proactive, not reactive, and shape AI in a way that reflects our values, goals, and aspirations. We should not fear AI, but we should not be complacent either. We should be curious, cautious, and courageous, and explore the potential and pitfalls of AI with an open mind and a critical eye.

Thanks for reading!

Yes, AI Refactoring was used in this article's writing. But all the ideas, worldviews, and other points, along with most of the writing, are mine. 😊

Cover Image Credit

Top comments (18)

miketalbot profile image
Mike Talbot ⭐ • Edited

Maybe, or maybe we've unlocked a digital version of how we think and reason that will just keep developing. AIs already have greater general intelligence than the average person if measured by examination results - kinda how we normally measure intelligence.

If we have managed to replicate a mechanism similar to how we think and reason then AI could do all of those things you suggest it cannot. It shows signs of doing them right now. AI is embodied in robots, probably LLMs in cars soon. Much of this article seems to ignore the fact that LLMs are actually a unifying AI technology as you can treat everything as language. Let's face it, humans do that much of the time.


best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Thanks for the feedback! I don't know that I agree with you though.

miketalbot profile image
Mike Talbot ⭐

Time will tell, that's the best any of us have on this I think...

Thread Thread
best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Yep. Thanks for sharing!

syxaxis profile image
George Johnson

A lot of this forgets that humans are slow, lumbering creatures who hate change. I work in a shop that still has Solaris 10, some production Windows 2008 and even an Oracle v10 database, all went end of life over a decade ago now.

While "greenfields" might be all about the latest tech, certain industries are incredibly slow on the uptake. They will of course have a huge mixture of tech from the latest cloud AI state of the art alongside some ancient creaking old mainframe that the whole corp hangs on.

When I started at one company when I was 22 and they were installing Oracle 7 and setting a central database. I left for a while and came back a few years ago, guess what? That central DB is still in use and no one dare dismantle it as they don't know the precise number of apps and feeds using it as it's so meshed into the fabric of the company IT. It was there when I started my T career and I'm now 53 and thinking about my retirement plans and it's still there after over 30 years!

Do I think AI will replace jobs? Yes and no but I think it's going to be a very long and slow process with a lot of people and job churn in order to get IT depts in millions of companies into shape where AI is more than just a fringe use tool.

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Interesting points, thanks for sharing!

getsetgopi profile image

AI will make developers addicted to instant code generation. Instead of writing code from scratch, the developer will take the help of AI to generate code and then modify based on the requirement. Developers also seek AI help to optimize the code for better performance, readability, best practices and standards.

Future will all be no writing but reusable/drag and drop of components and function. One code for web and mobile, fast delivery to market and four day work culture.

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

The goal of most developers is to be efficient, not to write code. If AI helps us get things done faster, I think it's a benefit.

clxrityy profile image

Whenever I ponder about this, I come to the question: Where does it stop? What can humans do that AI, in theory, will never be able to do?

This post establishes AI for what it is, but not what it could or what it will be.

I recently watched a YouTube video 2023's Biggest Breakthroughs in Computer Science, which emphasizes how quickly and unpredictably AI is advancing.

In short, you'll notice large AI models behaving unpredictably and the neural networks behaving in phenomena that is only seen and explained by behaviors in nature. (Birds flying in a flock, etc.)

I do feel like there are misconceptions about AI, despite it's obvious definition. It is, basically as you've already described, man-made intelligence (as opposed to our intelligence... which is... whatever it is).
But, we are the ones inevitably are powering these AI's. It is our intelligence that allows theirs.

It does scare me, but I try to look at it optimistically. I feel like it's important to remember that these models learn from us, and we should try to be good "parents" to AI.

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

That's a very interesting perspective! It gives me a lot to think about.
Thanks for sharing!

namingthingsishard profile image

On the job front, of course there's a possibility and it's happening as we speak, but I think that AI can't replace us in the sense that it doesn't truly understand. Humans are the driving force behind them. I suppose I would be more worried if we successfully create AGI.

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Yeah, I do find AGI concerning. Especially since ANI right now definitely can't do evil things (it can only assist people with them if so trained), but a bad AGI could be quite detrimental.
That said, AGI would be pretty cool and impressive. Not sure if it's something we want, though…

Thanks for the feedback!

shekharrr profile image
Shekhar Rajput

I fear this! 🥲

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

I guess we don't really know what the future holds, and that's scary...

fullfull567 profile image

AI will be our partner in progress, helping us to solve complex problems and create a better future.

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Thanks for the feedback!

jlewis profile image
Jeremy Lewis

AI is very versatile however limitations exist especially hallucinations and reasoning abilities. I think AI will be a game changer by providing insights that enhance productivity!

best_codes profile image
Best Codes

Thanks for the feedback! I currently almost don't know what to think...