The first time I saw the film the Matrix, I immediately identified with living in the world that appears real, but knowing the real world exists just outside the parameters. After a near death experience when my son was born, it was as if I was living in 2 worlds and I had a hard time explaining what that felt like until the Matrix. We are now living in a world where science fiction is and has been becoming science fact.
The movie held another issue that created the double world. One that in the next few decades we may experience or at least have a brush with a thinking, A. I. Elon Musk, along with Stephen Hawking and Bill Gates have all warned that could be in our near future. I loved what Steve Wozniack said, “Robots will make humans their pets.” (1)
Wozniack said it changed how he treated his dog, now he feeds him steak and chicken every day. He also believes that A. I. will feel responsible for us, as an actualized being. Sounds nice huh? Well as there are many opinions about animals, does that mean some of our actualized companions will be abusive, torture or abandon us? Ok, that was dark. The point is we don’t know. In V3 News Wozniack stated, “First, the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that, though, the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern.”
Computerized telephones, kitchen appliances, and even sex bots are being created that support humanity. Though most of us are aware of the use of A.I. in manufacturing to increase production, we are now using it in warfare. President Obama flew drones over the Middle East dropping bombs and hitting targets on the ground, killing people, without human loss to the U.S. They have made small robots that can disarm bombs, they provide the government surveillance with a robot the size of a fly, so small that most people would ignore it.
Boston Dynamics has come up with a humanoid robot named Atlas, he is the first of the super soldiers being made so in warfare there is no loss of human life. The LS3 is a Leg squad support system that resembles a mechanical dog and is designed to carry supplies for soldiers. (2)
Elon Musk is the founder, CEO, and CTO of Space X; co-founder, CEO, and product architect of Tesla Inc.; co-founder and chairman of Solar City; co-chairman of Open AI; co-founder of Zip2; and founder of X.com, which merged with Confinity and took the name Pay Pal. So, his business is about futuristic projects and working with artificial intelligence. He is quoted as saying that working with artificial intelligence is like “Summoning the Devil”. (3) Even Bill Gates believes that superintelligence is challenging.
In 1962 Arthur Samuels wanted his computer to beat him at checkers. Anyone who programs computers knows how many excruciatingly small instructions you must give the computer for it to accomplish the task. What Samuels did was program the computer to play against itself 1000 times and learn from it. The program worked. Stephen Hawking literally stated that creating artificial intelligence maybe human’s greatest achievement, it also may be human’s last.
So, a machine that works 24 hours a day, learns, creates and solve experiments may become so efficient that we are the problem. The A.I. may one day see human beings in the way of their ability to finish their tasks. Our inability to control our emotions, and our human imperfections may cause them see us as an issue and remove us from the picture entirely.
- Neal, Dave, Steve Wozniack: Robots Will Make Humans Their Pets, V3 news, http://www.v3.co.uk/v3-uk/news/2415054/steve-wozniak-says-robots-will-make-humans-their-pets
- Changing Your Idea of What Robots Can Do, http://www.bostondynamics.com/robot_littledog.html
- “Trust Your Own Focus Group of One”. Entrepreneur.com. April 11, 2014. Retrieved April 21, 2014. Elon Musk, founder of PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX
- Elon Musk: Artificial Intelligence is Mankind’s Biggest Threat, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NTb10Au-Ic