City Talks: Robert Hsiung and Holly Ransom talk the future of AI

- March 26, 2019 2 MIN READ

Robert Hsiung Managing Director of the global online education powerhouse, Udacity China, is the keynote speaker at City Talks Sydney: Our future with Artificial Intelligence and its rise in China, on Tuesday 9 April. 

The talk is a key event in the visiting entrepreneur program, produced by the City of Sydney in collaboration with the local startup sector and technology industry, and will bring together leading thinkers from China and Australia to look at the growing use of AI and examine how it is transforming business and society.

Hsiung believes Australian businesses should embrace artificial intelligence (AI) to develop workplace survival skills.

“There are a lot of reports showing AI is going to replace 50 per cent of today’s jobs in the next decade,” Hsiung said. “Whether you’re a doctor, lawyer, accountant or work in the stock market, we’re seeing AI programs spread across all industries and replace workers.   

“There is a massive digital transformation of the workplace and my advice is to invest in yourself – take part in the revolution or be made obsolete by it. 

Hsiung is quick to predict that the future tech will not spawn a world where robots rule and AI has gone rogue, instead he suggests humans will control AI for the betterment of all with soft skills at its heart.

“What AI is not good at is creative things. The key point is to focus on sharpening critical problem-solving skills, creativity and the ability to innovate in your industry,” says Hsiung.

“We may not notice it, but AI technology is already affecting our lives in terms of consumer technology – from robot vacuum cleaners to driverless cars and voice-activated technology in our homes – and we’re going to see that increasing.

“AI is going to take a lot of the menial tasks that we do, either at home or in the workplace, away and is going to free us from manual labour. I think we should be super excited.”

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said Hsiung’s talk will give invaluable insights into the fast growing global AI market.

“China is forging ahead and becoming a leader in artificial intelligence,” the Lord Mayor said.  

“So as part of our commitment to our local startup sector and technology industry, we’re bringing together some of the smartest minds in AI from both China and Australia to discuss how to minimise risks and make the most of possible advancements in education, healthcare and society.”

The City’s Visiting Entrepreneur Program is produced in collaboration with over 50 partner organisations from the local startup ecosystem. The program features five days of talks, seminars and mentoring sessions tailored to the local startup community and entrepreneurs 

CityTalks Sydney: Our future with Artificial Intelligence and its rise in China takes place on Tuesday 9 April from 6.30pm to 8pm at the Lower Town Hall, Sydney Town Hall, 483 George Street, Sydney. Tickets to this event are free but bookings are essential