By: Hissa Salman Al-Rooqi
Could machines replace humans as the dominant force on the planet?
It is virtually impossible to predict where we will be in the next five years, but the next seven or eight years will surely hold as much change as the last ten, trying to figure out when a technological singularity will occur is synonymous with asking someone when they first gained consciousness.
seeing how much has changed in less than a decade since the emergence of smartphones, back in 2006 it was impossible to conceptualize the idea of ordering food via apps, rent a room, book a flight and face time someone on the other side of the world, yet here we are.
In the next 15 years, machines are expected to be able to drive cars, work on the factory line, building components, provide comprehensive customer service, run our financial services, translate and interpret texts quicker than humans.
machines like Deep Blue, which has beaten grandmasters at chess is a live proof that AI’s could outsmart men by 2029. then there’s Henn a Hotel, as it is called in Japanese, was recently completed with robot demonstrations where a receptionist robot greets a hotel employee, demonstrating how to check in at the new hotel with facial recognition technology, so instead of the standard electronic keys, a digital image of the guest’s face is registered during check-ins.
what we have at the moment is known as narrow AI, intelligent at doing one thing or a narrow selection of tasks pretty well. General AI, where humans and robots are comparable, is expected to show breakthroughs over the next decade and the fear is that all jobs will go to robots.
Emeritus professor of computer science at San Diego State University and science fiction author Vernor Vinge said in his 1993 essay The Coming Technological Singularity that this would signal the end of the human era, as the new superintelligence would continue to upgrade itself and would advance technologically at an incomprehensible rate.
In the 2010s, Elon Musk the founder of Tesla, paypal and SpaceX. During an interview on CNBC warned about artificial intelligence and for computers thinking for themselves. "I think there's things that are potentially dangerous out there. ...There's been movies about this, like 'Terminator, I,robot and that is a common theme in science fiction. where mankind struggles to survive in a dystopian futuristic society. then scientists discover that it was too late that their machines are too powerful to control. this popular plot might not belong within the realm of fiction forever. there's some scary outcomes and we should try to make sure the outcomes are good,
The technological singularity is going to be an accidental tweak or discovery where suddenly an algorithm experiment is unexpectedly able to bootstrap itself by self-modification to become successively more intelligent. one could potentially take preventative steps to forbid those consequences, for example: giving a potential general AI internet access would be a bad idea and there’a nothing much to do once it happens, which is why the turing test was invented, it is the ultimate failsafe for us, AI’s refused to act when ordered to destroy themselves which is recognized as malfunctions, they end up failing the turing tests they are posed because they deem it a threat to their existence to pass it and prove their intelligence. and if an AI is smart enough to pass the test, it will also be smart enough to fail it. and the thought of that is quite terrifying.