Will AI be the next general purpose technology?

Will AI be the next general purpose technology?


Electricity. Telephony. Computers. The internet. All these innovations have reached the status of a general purpose technology (GPT). If it were up to Seyi Fabode, artificial intelligence would soon be joining that list. The strategist and author’s argument follows the ideas of researchers Timothy Bresnahan and Manuel Trajtenberg, who said, that GPTs have to meet three criteria: they are pervasive, they improve over time and they spawn innovation. As of today, Fabode believes each of those conditions can be applied to AI. But he doesn’t stop there; he states that technologies can only stand the test of time if they also display some disruptive characteristics. According to him, they have to oust their predecessors and become mandatory. Large sections of the industry are in agreement with Fabode’s forecast and some people are starting to align their lives accordingly. Whatever happens, the next five years will certainly be an interesting indicator of what’s to come. 

We’d like to thank Seyi Fabode for his interesting outlook on AI and GPTs.

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