Superpowers. Everybody wants to have at least one. Flight, super strength, telepathy, take your pick. So far, this remains just a wild dream, something that is usually reserved for the silver screen or the colourful pages of a comic book. But this is not entirely true. Think about it, with the help of technology we can do incredible things, things that not too long ago seemed to belong to the realm of impossibility. One technology especially stands out from the rest, holding our fascination hostage in one way or another. You probably already guessed that we are talking about artificial intelligence.
Since the term was first coined way back in 1956 by John McCarthy, artificial intelligence has become stuck in our imagination as an almost mystical presence that can help us unravel the mysteries of the world. Decades later, it turns out that all that hype around AI wasn’t just wishful thinking and empty promises, as AI has become one of the most versatile technologies present on the market, finding applicability in synthetic media, robotic process automation, self-driving vehicles, diagnosis of infectious diseases, and many more. Name a domain, and it’s very likely that AI is used there one way or the other.
But as with anything that holds great potential to do good, people will always find questionable applications that raise ethical dilemmas. This issue is more poignant with AI technologies as they can be used to track people or create media that mimic people’s voice or their likeness without their consent. Ownership of biometric data used to train AI also ranks as one of the most concerning issues that need to be resolved by members of the AI community.
Humans.ai has formulated its own answer to the thorny issue of AI ethics, and it relies on an unexpected technology that, at first glance, doesn’t seem to have anything in common with AI — blockchain. Utilizing blockchain as a framework for ethical AI, Humans.ai has created an all-in-one platform designed to support the creation and governance of a new type of AI, one that is kept under the close supervision of humans. Furthermore, we believe that the AI of the future belongs to each and every human who wants to participate.
So, by leveraging blockchain technology, we have created our patented AI NFTs, a new type of intelligent asset class that acts as a building block for the next generation of AI. Through this new technology, people can encapsulate their biometrics inside our AI NFTs and use them to create new synthetic media content. To ensure that the AI created inside the Humans Studio falls in line with our rigorous ethical standards, we have tinkered with blockchain technology and created Proof of Human, the centrepiece of our AI ecosystem that acts as a validation, consensus and governance mechanism that ensures that every AI has been thoroughly verified and approved by a real human being.
Let’s dial back a bit and take a closer look at blockchain, the technology that acts as a gatekeeper for ethical AI.
Blockchain to address the AI ethical dilemma
After closely monitoring the pulse of the AI market, Humans.ai has concluded that a change is long overdue. Currently, AI is developed behind closed doors with little to no access to regular people who do not have a technical background and the knowledge necessary to operate and own their piece of AI. Ours is a humancentric approach that aims to democratize the propagation of AI in society by giving people access to the remote control of AI. Blockchain with its intrinsic set of powerful characteristics and features like decentralization, distribution, transparency, traceability and granular ownership can act as an ideal vehicle that can bring our AI vision to life. By pairing AI and blockchain together, we manage to address some of the most pressing issues concerning the ethical creation and use of artificial intelligence and synthetic media.
Using blockchain as a foundation, Humans.ai has built a decentralized open ecosystem with transparency at its core. Powered by humans who use their biometrics as the biological control key, our infrastructure makes it easier than ever to create synthetic media and AI-based assets at scale in a way that ensures that every human is fairly rewarded for their contribution. To facilitate a democratic approach to AI creation and ownership, we combine traditional solutions with blockchain-based record-keeping and governance to build a permissionless platform that significantly reduces the gap between idea and execution.
Through our technology, every human can unleash their inner creator and actively participate in the governance and validation of the AI of the future. The Humans Blockchain is an open ecosystem that encourages people to:
● Create — by giving users access to the best elements of both AI and blockchain, we guarantee full control and ownership of their data which they can use to create unique AI-based media
● Decide — users are incentivized to participate in the governance of AI and decide on essential aspects regarding the future of AI and how it is used
● Earn — users are rewarded in $HEART if they take an active role in the governance of the network or whenever their AI assets are used by other users
AI NFTs, an intelligent asset class that bridges the gap between AI and blockchain
AI NFTs are a new type of smart collectable that acts as a building block for AI products developed inside the Humans.ai ecosystem. Not unlike your ordinary NFT, which is a static picture with little to no functionality, AI NFTs are a new asset class that rests at the confluence between two of the most innovative technologies in the market, AI and blockchain.
AI NFTs are centred around a user’s digital DNA, pieces of biometric data that can be anything from voice, face, way o being, gestures and so on. This information is encapsulated inside AI NFTs and can act as a foundation for the development of future AI products like synthetic media. Users can use multiple AI NFTs to create, for example, a talking head, a digital avatar that combines a voice with a face to create a digital persona that can be trained to talk in multiple languages. Besides the biometric data it stores, AI NFTs have embedded in them a set of rules that stipulate how the information encapsulated in them can be used. This way, we prevent users from generating AI products that propagate harmful content like hate speech, politically incorrect messages or offensive content.
Proof of Human is our patented blockchain-based consensus, verification and governance mechanism that makes sure that every request forwarded to an AI NFT is thoroughly verified by a real human being who takes on the role of the Human Validator who ensures that AI usage falls in line with Humans.ai’s ethical standards and the set of rules that are embedded inside the AI NFT by its creator/owner. Everyone can become a Human Validator as long as they stake a portion of their $HEART tokens and send some of their biometric data to prove that they are real human beings. Depending on the role, Human Validators can be split into two categories:
By combining artificial intelligence with blockchain technology, we are giving people the power to build and control their own pieces of AI, all while ensuring that the development and usage of the AI products created inside our ecosystem fall in line with our ethical standards.
Since you are here: find out how blockchain works!
Crypto enthusiasts should already be familiar with blockchain, as this technology acts as the backbone of cryptocurrencies and NFTs alike. Blockchain is a decentralized and distributed peer to peer network that is primarily used to store financial transactions, but it can be programmed to store any type of data. So far, so good, but blockchain seems to be only a fancy name for a computer database, a technology that has been with us since the advent of modern computing.
To some extent, this is true, a blockchain can be called a database, but not every database is a blockchain. This is because blockchains managed to solve the Byzantine Generals Problem, an allegory that describes an issue specific to distributed systems that have puzzled researchers and scientists for decades, namely how to ensure trust in an ecosystem composed of participants that do not know and do not trust each other.
The name blockchain offers us insight into how this technology is designed, and how it functions. Also, hashing is a process through which any data can be transformed into a hash digest of fixed length. Bitcoin, for example, uses SHA 256, a hashing function that takes an input, regardless of its size — it can be a single letter or an entire book, and produce a hash digest of 64 characters.
A notable feature of hashing is that it cannot be bine reversed engineered, meaning that you cannot determine the original input based only on the hash digest and that the same data input will always generate the same hash output.
For example, if the word “Humans” is passed through the SHA 256 hashing function, it would produce the following output — b370fddfc712a78b684f9ef5b615cc7f5004356b5d1efda045a1546344726809, but if we modify a single letter and make it lowercase, “humans”, the resulting hash digest will differ drastically — 744eb2d1a0b9bbe8d05eb02b5d0bd4b1b54aa6989722aade50696e2d866b45c3.
This important design feature is what gives blockchain some of its most important features like tamper resistance, data immutability and traceability. If a malicious actor tries to modify the information from a block of transactions, it will invalidate all the blocks that follow down the chain because the hashes will no longer match.
Blockchain manages to solve the issue of trust through consensus mechanisms, an integral component of this technology that helps achieve a state of agreement between the members of the network concerning a single data value or a single state of the network. Since blockchain hit the market way back in 2009, multiple consensus mechanisms have appeared, each of them tackling the issue of consensus differently. The most popular consensus mechanism is Proof of Work and Proof of Stake.
Proof of Work is the original consensus mechanism and is currently utilized in Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency which is often used as a benchmark through which other cryptocurrencies are measured. In Proof of Work, network participants, also called nodes, compete with each other in order to solve a highly complex cryptographic puzzle. This process is also known as mining. The first user to provide a solution gets to add the next block of transactions to the blockchain. By design, Proof of Work is inefficient energy-wise in order to deter any tampering attempts from users.
Proof of Stake is a more energy-efficient alternative to Proof of Work which does not rely on mining. Instead, users who want to participate in the consensus process need to stake a resource, usually the governing currency of the network. For example, in the Humans ecosystem, the governing currency is the $HEART token. While staked, the funds in question cannot be moved or transacted.
The higher the amount of cryptocurrency staked, the higher the chances of the user being selected by the network to be a validator. For helping maintain the network, validators are rewarded with the transaction fees from the transactions they helped validate. To deter any misbehaviour from validators, Proof of Stake systems will penalize any offenders by slashing the number of tokens the user in question staked.
When you put together the innovative design choices of blockchain alongside its distributed and decentralized features, it becomes obvious that blockchain positions itself as a unique framework capable of ensuring unparalleled levels of trust concerning the data it stores as well as in-depth traceability and ownership of the information.