The Insightful Troll

Rants and ruminations.

AI Washing

| Comments

AI Washing

Mike Elgan’s opinion piece on the AI hype:

The claim that AI improves everything and operates without humans is a delusion.


AI washing is a deceptive marketing practice that overemphasizes the role of artificial intelligence in the product or service being promoted. The phrase is based on “greenwashing,” coined by environmentalist Jay Westerveld in 1986, where consumer products are marketed as environmentally friendly regardless of environmental impact.

Products using old-school algorithms are labeled as “AI-powered,” taking advantage of the absence of a universally agreed upon definition for what AI is and what AI is not. Startups build apps that plug into a publicly available generative AI API and market it as an AI app. Big, bold AI projects that are supposed to showcase technology often rely on people working behind the scenes, because humans are the only way to make the ambitious AI solution work.

I have been saying this for since the beginning of the AI hype cycle - its all just smoke and mirrors.