Technology augmented orthodontics is the future of our practices. Human intelligence, intuition and passion will still remain valuable, despite the expansion of the digital world. But yet there is a sentiment of fear that machines will take over. This rhetoric of humanity vs. technology is becoming more common as technology advances throughout many industries. This perception makes many orthodontists fear for their jobs.
We must face our fears if we want to get the most out of our technology, and we must conquer those fears if we want to get the best out of our humanity.” – Garry Kasparov
Back in 1997, the world champion of chess, Garry Kasparov, was defeated by IBM’s super computer, Deep Blue. The world of chess wanted a human chess champion. And yet a machine won against a human. Despite the machine’s victory, there are more chess players today than ever before. And many of them are playing a collaborative game of chess, where chess players compete each other with a computer by their side. Where the skill of human to computer interaction outplays human skill or machine skill alone.
What will it be like to work with a computer by our side? Human intuition with machine calculation. Human strategy with machine tactics. Human experience with machine’s memory. Human connection facilitated by machine efficiency. The challenge will be in developing the best interfaces for collaborative work that take the strengths of both of the proverbial opponents and turn man vs. machine into man enhanced by machine. Where the value of each practitioner will be amplified by their skill at integrating technology into their treatment.
In the future, effective orthodontic practices will work by the combined effort of a human with an intelligent computer at our side. Combining our strengths will greatly enhance the work we perform. This will allow us to better work on the human relationships with our patients. With current technologies, this future is beginning to be a reality. This holds many more opportunities. Let’s keep in mind that we cannot cease to make progress. We have to speed it up.
Machines have calculations. We have understanding. Machines have instructions. We have purpose. Machines have objectivity. We have passion. We should not worry about what our machines can do today. Instead, we should worry about what they still cannot do today, because we will need the help of the new, intelligent machines to turn our grandest dreams into reality… If we fail it is because we grew complacent and limited our ambitions.” – Garry Kasparov