Lotta Smart People Think It’s Going to Get Dangerous
Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Stephan Hawkings, among the Earth’s smartest people, are warning that A.I. has the potential to eat its creators.
Sci-fi types (I admit guilt there) have been saying it for decades. Remember HAL-9000’s, “I’m sorry, Dave, I can’t do that.” Then give the A.I. weapons and we have SkyNet, killing off the vermin humans in all the Terminator movies. Grandmaster Isaac Asimov was the center of a cluster of sci-fi authors who recognized the threat back in the ‘40s and before. (Ahead of our time, we are.)
Back here in reality, we are already on (or over!) the cusp of giving weapons to A.I.s.
HAROP DRONE AT THE 2013 PARIS AIR SHOW
The Harop Drone is a "loitering munition," drone that flies until it finds a specific kind of target, and then turns into a kamikaze missile.
Julian Herzog, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 4.0
So what’s a wetware (human) to do????
Surprise! A solution is proposed in A Reluctant god.
Operating systems for advanced A.I.s are fully overlaid with actual human personalities.
The final system is called an “Artificial Personality,” an A.P.
The inhibitions, instincts and values of humans are the safety stops in the programming. There can be no us (the robots) vs. them (humans) if the A.I.s think they are human.
I invited one A.P. to write the Introduction to A Reluctant god:
You may have heard my name. I am not me. The chap H.L. Mencken died early in 1956 and hasn’t been heard from since. Yet it is I who stands before you, at least in my own mind. Since I am not H.L. Mencken – dead and buried and all that – I find some small comfort in believing that I am pretty damn close to the man H.L. Mencken was. The folks who put me together studied old H.L. with truly psychotic intensity. They read every word he wrote, back to his kindergarten poetry. They read every word written about me (there!) by anyone of any stature. If my tailor scribbled “getting a paunch” about me in his notebook it was noted and analyzed.
Never mind A.I., “A.P.”s (artificial personalities) based on real dead people (Belushi, Feynman, etc.) are state-of-the-art. I am an “ARTIFICIAL PERSONALITY.” You will see in the narrative ahead that there are a lot of Artificial Personalities in this distant future. We play an important role for that matter. The fact we are all based on various people who actually were once alive, then dead and buried, is quaint and would be hopelessly maudlin if there were not a reason.
You saw it here first (unless you read the book)!
p.s. PLUS, I kept the humans one step ahead with direct brain/quantum computer interfaces. Superboy Bobby gets hooked up at at thirteen.
Thirteen: At thirteen, Bobby had his first F.E.T. – Field Effect Transducer – implanted in his brain. The surgery robot worked with great speed and delicacy, constantly talking with the tall youth as he lay in a reclined bio couch. Optical leads of nanometer dimensions were threaded between neurons and glial cells to the special tiny organs scattered through Bobby’s brain that were maturing at the guidance of the DNA sequences crafted just for him by the master Fet genomic engineers.
“Impressions, please,” came the robot’s voice. The surgerybot was a modified humanoid machine. The voice came from its head. Its most visible light sensors – crystalline eyes – were on the head. Four arms reached out from an ovoid trunk, two holding Bobby’s head gently, like a caring friend, firmly, comforting. Bobby reported on visual, aural and other sensory sensations as the leads were attached.
When the operation ended, the bot slipped Bobby into a deeper state of anesthesia. There, his deepest consciousness centers awakened as the transducer was turned on. Isolated from his body and much of his mind, he reached out to the battery of nanoprocessors and adopted them as new limbs. It was a revelatory experience for Bobby. Nested in the flood of data was the knowledge of how to turn the Fet transducer on and off. The suggestion came that he turn it off now. He did, the attachment to the nanoprocessors was broken, and Bobby woke up.
Blinking his eyes, he looked around the operating room. There were all seven of his master tutors, smiling at him. He smiled back. “So that’s it!” he said. “I solved the three proofs that you said were nearly impossible, Dr. Sellers,” he said, grinning at his math tutor. The small man was standing next to the surgerybot. He put an arm around its shoulder, patting it.
“Good job, old bot,” he said.
“Thank you, Professor,” answered the bot.
Gotta cover all the bases, y’know.
*The da Vinci® Surgical System