Is Artificial Intelligence (AI) really a threat? Possibly, but not likely. So why is this a debut that seems to be growing in intensity? One reason is the mystery that surrounds (AI) development coupled with prominent voices like Bill Gates, Stephen Hawking, and Elon Musk having warned humanity of the threat posed by artificial intelligence. Then, there is the explosion of (AI) themed television shows and movies. HBO’s “Westworld” and “Ex Machina” are just the most recent carnations of super intelligence, humanoid machines secretly plotting against their creators, us. Who can forget the calm, soothing, yet deadly voice of HAL 9000 of 2001: A Space Odyssey or the rampaging T-800 Model 101 terminator played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. The bottom line is there are no murderous cyborgs powered by super (AI) intent on our extinction. There is no credible proof that artificial intelligence (AI) now or in the future poses a threat to humankind.
YouGov took a survey for the British Science Association and found that 36% of people truly believe that artificial intelligence (AI) poses an existential threat to human survival. (Shead) The reason in large part is the fear of the unknown, the need for a bogey man/woman. The fact of the matter is the term “artificial intelligence” itself is a misnomer. AI is neither artificial, nor all that intelligent. (Miller) Dr. Akli Adjaoute, founder and CEO of Brighterion, a San Francisco-based provider of (AI )and machine-learning software for healthcare and identity fraud, believes that, “Computers, unlike people, have no imagination.” (Bertolucci) Computers are unable to think for themselves. They lack cognitive capabilities. Even powerful (AI) systems such as IBM’s Jeopardy! -winning Watson, don’t mimic the human brain. Computers need to be programmed, they need to be given task to accomplish, they need human guidance. They do not have the ability to become self-aware.
The second reason (AI) could never become a real threat to humanity is human beings. Human intervention would prevent this from ever happening. If we are smart enough to create something with super (AI) I’m sure we would be smart enough not to give it the power to destroy us. Farther more, why would they want to destroy or control us. This fear of being dominated and the need to dominate is a very human characteristic. Humans have always had a penchant for pushing boundaries to the outer limits. Human beings are explorers by nature seeking the unknown. Rather, it by sailing beyond the flat horizon, or reaching skyward toward the outer limits of space, and now the mind. A being with (AI) would have no such desire.
Allen Institute CEO Oren Etzioni recently told CNBC, AI’s critics may be blurring the distinction between machines capable of performing instructions very efficiently, and truly autonomous systems that think and act independently. (Bertolucci) in summary we do not have the capability to build something that can freely think on its own mimicking the human brain.
Bertolucci, Jeff. “No, AI Won’t Kill Us All.” informationweek.com. <http://www.informationweek.com/big-data/big-data-analytics/no-ai-wont-kill-us-all/d/d-id/1319202>.
Milleri, Sean. “The Fascinating Truth About Why Artificial Intelligence Won’t Take Over the World.” alternet.org. <http://www.alternet.org/culture/fascinating-truth-about-why-artificial-intelligence-wont-take-over->.
Shead, Sam. “Over a third of people think AI poses a threat to humanity.” businessinsider.com. <http://www.businessinsider.com/over-a-third-of-people-think-ai-poses-a-threat-to-humanity-2016-3>.