Augmented Intelligence over Artificial Intelligence
At KUNGFU, we believe that AI should be used toward positive goals — enhancing our ability to help people and serve our customers. While there is a lot of press about AI taking jobs, we believe that AI should rightly be called augmented intelligence and we work to craft solutions to augment the power and productivity of people. AI has the ability to augment decision-making and take on the more menial tasks that weigh us down and freeing us up to focus on higher-value work that leverages our experience, intuition and creativity.
We only want to work with companies that are looking to leverage technology for projects that, like the medical profession’s Hippocratic Oath, first do no harm. And ideally, we hope the projects our clients ask us to work on help to improve the lives of people and society. Even within projects, we aim to be aware of challenges like how machine learning models might introduce bias into their results and work to avoid them.
One of the implications is that we turn down work. We don’t have hard and fast rules or draw a line in the sand, but rather we’ve got an evolving process for managing the tension between winning projects and living our values.
In short, we believe in using AI for good in both our client projects and our corporate philanthropy.
We Give Back
The team we’re building, like many in the world of AI, are some of the smartest and most talented — and frankly advantaged — people in today’s technology-driven world. But being smart and successful without having meaning in life can lead to feeling empty and unfulfilled. If our team is fulfilled, we maximize our ability and motivation to help and serve clients.
At KUNGFU we work to foster a culture of giving back and live the philosophy that “to whom much is given, much is expected.” More specifically, we’re trying to answer a question that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr asked:
Every person must decide at some point, whether they will walk in light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgment: Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?
We Do Pro-Bono Projects
We also encourage our team members to dedicate time when they’re not working to delight our clients to focus on pro bono projects. As part of this effort, KUNGFU.AI opens its doors to the Austin community each month. AI for Good #HelpingForward is our way of helping give back through the things we know best: data science and artificial intelligence, served along with some coffee and tea for good measure. Interested? Join us for our next open AI for Good #HelpingForward office hours!
We Donate to Non-Profits
To this end, we’re developing a corporate culture of philanthropy. This year we proudly supported Women Who Code and CODE2040, two organizations that are aligned with both our mission and values that are doing great work in our hometown of Austin, Texas as well as around the country.
We’re Building a Diverse and Inclusive Team
We are committed to building a culture that is both professional and hardworking while also collaborative, open, and fun. In our hiring, we’re intentionally building an inclusive and diverse team and are proud to be the first startup to take The Startup Diversity and Inclusion Pledge, an effort that is being spearheaded by one of our founders and that members of our team are supporting.
And, as part of #HelpingForward and our commitment to diversity and inclusion, if you’re a woman and/or from an underrepresented group in the tech community looking to break into the fields of data science or artificial intelligence, you can stop by as well. You can help us give advice to the companies that show up and hey, who knows where that might lead!
Kung Fu Philosophy
The founding team at KUNGFU do not practice the martial art known as Kung Fu, but we have found inspiration in the philosophy behind it.
The martial art Kung Fu is actually based on Chinese philosophy and is about improving wisdom and intelligence. It literally translates from Chinese as a discipline or skill achieved through hard work and practice. In this context, the parallels to AI are striking and the ethos behind it is relevant to the culture we’re working to build.
In the context of the technological transition that is underway, KUNGFU is all about using AI for Good.