A dominant scenario which always plays around Hollywood has been the theme of apocalyptic events. We’ve all thought of or dreamt the prospect of a zombie apocalypse, alien abduction or a battle of man against robot. Cult films and series such as Walking Dead, War of the Worlds and Terminator depict each of these situations very well, although perhaps not in the sense that they are ever realistically going to happen in the near future. Recent buzz however has emerged over new advances in AI intelligence which could potentially evolve into a future threat. Could an intelligence system similar to Skynet become a reality?
The advancement of AI correlates with its military use. Drones and robots are now able to freely execute a kill without human interaction and perhaps even more alarming is NSA’s new toy. ‘MonsterMind’ is an intelligence system capable of controlling every digital device or communication in the U.S., while also being able to identify and launch freely without any human intervention.
As AI is evolving it’s getting smarter while also starting to resemble us. Robots are eerily looking life like in Japan, an example being ‘Geminoid F’ which can smile, talk, sing and even boasts 65 expressions. The mission to create a common nightmare or a new one has been a great success so far. While AI is now able to reach high speeds in computing it still hasn’t reached the complexity of human processing, if it ever will. Perhaps reassuringly if computers stop evolving as they do every couple of years it won’t be possible to develop intelligence that can match the human brain, let alone surpass it.
David Hanson who created the famous ‘Sophia’ machine based on Audrey Hepburn is looking to further AI intelligence once more. Creator of the now well-known AI robot is currently working on machines that can challenge the human brain, with the aim being to influence human trust. This trust is earned through specially manufactured and crafted humanoid faces which are designed to be appealing enough to gain trust through interaction. ‘Sophia’ already had groundwork in place for basic human interaction. The AI is able to see through eye lenses while also having speech and facial recognition, language processing and motion control in place. Despite the slow speech and responses, the robot was able to communicate and engage.
Robots and artificial intelligence despite its fears can have its benefits as is the reason why it’s being developed. Throughout our daily lives programs and machines play a part and the advancement of machines will benefit us and the speed at which they solve problems. AI Programs learning themselves will save time and without exaggeration, one day even mankind. It has potential to save the human race but also to destroy it. This warning coming from one of the most renowned thinkers of our time Stephen Hawking: “The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race. If people design computer viruses, someone will design AI that improves and replicates itself. This will be a new form of life which outperforms humans”. You would think this quote is from one of the many Sci Fi movies depicting revolution but you would be wrong. It’s no surprise that Hawkins is amongst other scientists who signed a letter to ensure AI is safely monitored and researched without posing a threat as itp progresses towards human intelligence levels.
An ideal environment would be a future in which AI powered robots develop into genius machines to help solve and progress our problems. Unfortunately it’s unlikely to ever be that simple. David Hanson said: '’There's a certain expression of genius to be able to get up and cross the room and pour yourself a cup of coffee, and robots and AI have not achieved that level of intelligence reliably.’’