Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain
the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in
Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles
In January, Google chief executive Sundar Pichai said that artificial intelligence (AI) would have a “more profound” impact than even electricity. He was following a long tradition of corporate leaders claiming their technologies are both revolutionary and wonderful.