Policymakers, facing increasingly uncertain contemporary and future security and technology environments, are engaging in futurethink — using fictional scenarios to make predictions about the results of introducing artificial intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies into these environments. Futurists engage in this process by providing scenarios to ameliorate uncertainty, drawing on a suite of tools that include simulations, worst-case planning, war-gaming, and even science fiction narratives.
A common futurethink tactic is to switch from risk-based probabilistic thinking, which is vulnerable to various decisionmaking pathologies, to possibilistic thinking — creatively generating scenarios outside of expected outcomes with a focus on impacts rather than probabilities. This move avoids some pathologies but is still subject to many biases and must be implemented judiciously.
One motivation [behind the recent Digital Services Act and Digital Markets Act draft legislation] is to encourage others to adopt the EU's approach by using the power of that market. Broadly, that's a good thing. Brussels and Washington — or perhaps more importantly, Silicon Valley — don't see eye to eye on many of these issues. But they do share an approach that is rooted in democratic values... There are multiple pieces of legislation at play. These include a proposed AI regulation that would, among other things, establish a list of prohibited AI applications and put a set of obligations on providers of high-risk systems.