Artificial Intelligence - friend or foe?

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BeetRoots
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#1
Report Thread starter 9 months ago
#1
Are we in danger of creating globalised systems which become smarter than us by several orders and which will eventually render most of us both physically and intellectually redundant to productive labour?

What will the rich and powerful do with us when we're unemployed and unemployable? Keep us as pets?
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mazenod
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We are already facing the effects of machines. With machines replacing humans in some industries, jobs are becoming scarce in those areas. Factories are almost completely machine based now.
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fallen_acorns
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talking about AI itself:

me and my wife were discussing this yesterday.

A point we were talking about is that its presumed in a lot of the debates around AI that humans will stay the same. But, something that I think a lot of the sci-fi gets right is that, by the time humans have the ability to create AI, we will likely also have the ability to augment and change what it means to be human.

My expectation is that were an AI system to exist in a society of 'natural' humans, it would be disastrous beyond comprehension for humanity as the dominant species, and we would quickly loose our dominance and hope that the new power treats us well...

But I think the situation will instead be that AI systems will emerge at a time where humans have unlocked our own genome, and developed technology for bio-mechanics/modifications. I think what will likely happen is that humans will themselves become similar to AI, in the sense that we will be programing and augmenting each generation of humans to be better and more advanced, through biological editing and integration with technology.. and as such will compete with AI life forms.

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On automation, not AI:

Yeah, its going to suck, but its not a massive potential catastropy as AI is, its just another industrial-revolution type shift in the way our world functions that will be painful for the generaiton who lives through it, but come to be the new standard for those who come after. In the long-run it has the potential to make us far more productive and liberated, but it also has the much scarier potential to localise power further into the hands of the few, rather than the many.
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BeetRoots
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I don't buy the idea that is sometimes offered to the effect humans will simply move into other sectors to do more socially and intellectually engaging work. AI and automation will be implemented in every sector and as far as it is profitable to do so (which will quickly become almost every circumstance). There is a paradox in that humans who don't have incomes cannot buy the goods and services the automating companies would otherwise expect them to. It will be an interesting few decades ahead of us.
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BeetRoots
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#5
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(Original post by ltsmith)
If we got to the point that robots could do highly skilled jobs then they'd also be smart enough to overthrow the rich and powerful.
It's a common theme in science-fiction but AI would have to somehow be emotionally motivated to survive and conquer, just being hyper-intelligent isn't enough. We, for example, only bother to do stuff because a certain cocktail of hormones are floating around in our brains - if it was otherwise we wouldn't even get out of bed, big brain or no big brain.
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Bio 7
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(Original post by fallen_acorns)
talking about AI itself:

me and my wife were discussing this yesterday.

A point we were talking about is that its presumed in a lot of the debates around AI that humans will stay the same. But, something that I think a lot of the sci-fi gets right is that, by the time humans have the ability to create AI, we will likely also have the ability to augment and change what it means to be human.

My expectation is that were an AI system to exist in a society of 'natural' humans, it would be disastrous beyond comprehension for humanity as the dominant species, and we would quickly loose our dominance and hope that the new power treats us well...

But I think the situation will instead be that AI systems will emerge at a time where humans have unlocked our own genome, and developed technology for bio-mechanics/modifications. I think what will likely happen is that humans will themselves become similar to AI, in the sense that we will be programing and augmenting each generation of humans to be better and more advanced, through biological editing and integration with technology.. and as such will compete with AI life forms.

---

On automation, not AI:

Yeah, its going to suck, but its not a massive potential catastropy as AI is, its just another industrial-revolution type shift in the way our world functions that will be painful for the generaiton who lives through it, but come to be the new standard for those who come after. In the long-run it has the potential to make us far more productive and liberated, but it also has the much scarier potential to localise power further into the hands of the few, rather than the many.
And when we become the Zha from Mass Effect and turn into the Human’Til?

I do think that will be our future though and I look forward to it. I don’t care where it leads us, just that we get there. Progress is better than long term survival in my opinion.
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BeetRoots
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#7
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(Original post by ltsmith)
AI can be much easier controlled than humans can be. A switch of a (power) button determines if AI is dead or alive. As a human, would you want other people having so much power over your life? I doubt AI would so they might decide to eliminate anyone who is a risk to their lives.
An AI system would have to have some deep programming for self-preservation. A clever calculator isn't in any obvious way going to automatically care about anything, including its existence. We're different because we've evolved as survival machines, self-preservation is ingrained in our physiology.
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Yourmainmancj
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#8
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I I am someone who studies AI and personally I don’t think it will take us over any time soon. However I do believe that it can by used by individuals to bully and manipulate others. For instance AI contains deliberately programmed societal biases which can cause AI to treat different groups accordingly
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Kill3rCat
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#9
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An interesting, if common, question. I think the reality is probably somewhere in the middle.

If you're interested, there's a great YouTube channel who covers topics such as these with some regularity; 'Isaac Arthur'. If you can look past his rather minor speech impediment, the mildly irritating stock footage, and the sometimes cloying optimism, you're in for a treat. His science is sound, and his presentation is solid. Here are some of his videos, relevant to this topic:

- Technological Singularity: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YXYcvxg_Yro
- Mind Augmentation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQpYOVvU17Y
- Jobs of the Future: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9yojxKs_Gc
- Purpose & Existence (in a post-scarcity civilisation): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qcggatwPBk
- Machine Rebellion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHd22kMa0_w

The first two videos have to do with the core of this topic; mind augmentation (the process of augmenting the human brain, partly, to increase its processing power) and technological singularity (covering AI self-improvement, and the fanciful idea that we'll switch it on and in no time at all have a super-AI).
Last edited by Kill3rCat; 9 months ago
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