Curiosity in the Age of AI

11 Jul 24 Rachel Pearson


In today's world, many people are increasingly relying on artificial intelligence to satisfy their curiosity. Instead of exploring topics themselves, they ask specific questions to AI, receive quick answers, and move on. However, this approach is the antithesis of true curiosity.

The Importance of Human Curiosity in the Age of AI

Whilst AI excels at processing vast amounts of data and providing efficient answers, it lacks the serendipitous nature of human curiosity that allows us to make unexpected connections. It’s crucial to understand the differences between human and AI curiosity and think about where and when we might need both.

3 key distinctions between human and AI curiosity

Intuitive vs Computational

Human curiosity is intuitive, relying on hunches and instincts to make serendipitous discoveries. The discovery of penicillin by Alexander Fleming is a prime example of this. In contrast, AI curiosity is computational, efficiently analysing large datasets to answer specific questions.

Personal vs Impartial

Human curiosity is personal, taking into account emotions, ethics, and experiences when making decisions. For instance, when considering climate change, we factor in the impact on future generations. AI curiosity, on the other hand, is designed to be impartial, applying data-driven analysis to reach unbiased conclusions.

Explorative vs Exploitative

Human curiosity is explorative, valuing knowledge for its own sake and finding joy in creative exploration and discovery. AI curiosity is exploitative, focusing on finding specific, practical solutions to well-defined problems.

These unique aspects of human curiosity – its intuitive, personal, and explorative nature – are what enable us to make serendipitous discoveries, consider ethical implications, and seek knowledge for its intrinsic value.

A Curious Future

As we move forward towards an age of unknowns and technological advances at epic speeds (and sometimes little caution for ethical and cultural impact!), it’s crucial that we protect and reclaim our human curiosity. Whilst AI certainly is a valuable tool, we should ensure that it complements, rather than replaces, our desire to explore, question, and discover.

The time to nurture and celebrate human curiosity is now.



Watch more Tilt Talks

Anne-Laure Le Cunff

Ness Labs