Apple Setting A Model For AI Privacy?

As a follow up to last weeks post about the hostility of Adobe to all things privacy related. I wanted to highlight a company who is attempting to do it correctly.

On Monday’s (June 10th ‘24) WWDC keynote Apple announced their “Apple Intelligence.” First, I am not an Apple Fan Boy because of several Steve Job’s shenanigans like this example

So this will be a fair critique. Apple’s focus is an attempt to run their “intelligence” on the device as much as possible to prevent having to send data to external systems or third parties. On device does not prevent them from pulling a fast one and attempting to inspect your content, your device, like they attempted with CSAM:

And on device does potentially limit the power of some of their features, but it is from a high level a good start on eliminating the spread of personal data. Now I hope they don’t pull an Adobe and try to sneak through terms of services changes that back pedals on this effort.

In addition, to this “on device” AI, they have created Apple silicon cloud based servers to fulfill requests. They state that when the cloud based service is needed, your data “…is used exclusively to fill your request” and “…your data is never stored…” That is cool.

Finally, it was mentioned that the code on their cloud will be available for inspection by experts to assure it is on the up and up. This will be interesting, given that most of AI intelligence is in the model that is built and not the code. Long term, this gesture may be more theater and less substance.

I commend Apple in its efforts to improve privacy in the age of AI. Time will tell if others follow suit and whether Apple continues with this stance long term.

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