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Emerging technology has often met with alarmism throughout history. Futurists argue the moral panics of today echo the hysterias of yesteryear, such as those fearing that replacing slide rules with calculators would destroy our comprehension of maths. But such derision often misses a crucial point: because critics have sometimes been wrong in the past does not mean the cautious are foolish today; new technology has frequently brought profound ethical and legal dilemmas alongside huge benefits. Such dismissals also underplay the ramifications surrounding milestone advances. Not least of these is artificial intelligence (AI), which already heralds vast commercial and personal applications.

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