Humanity’s Last Invention

Humanity’s Last Invention

AI has arrived, and depending on your perspective, that’s probably somewhere exciting and worrisome. Virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa are helping us be more productive, and the prospect of solving big data problems like grid modernization with machine learning and cognitive computing is very exciting. But should we be looking at the bigger picture?

According to Oxford professor Nick Bostrom, A.I is “not just another technology, another tool that will add incrementally to human capabilities.” It is, he says, “radically different,” and it “may be the last invention humans ever need to make.” Some of our greatest minds (Hawking, Gates, Musk, etc.) have issued stark warnings that should not be ignored. Today’s A.I is still relatively “dumb,” but the compounding effects of computers will lead to superintelligence, warns author Richard A. Clarke. The problem is that we can’t know what that means. Never in the history of the world has something or someone been smarter than mankind.

My view is we need to have more eyes on this technology as it develops and take the time to harness its benefits. Steve Case, the founder of AOL, made a very exciting prediction about AI, namely that computers will eliminate the technical barriers to innovation such as programing and advanced mathematics. With technology effectively democratized, innovation will no longer be a domain limited to those with strong technical chops. Anyone with vision, ideas, and commonsense know-how will have the ability to develop complex systems that can manage or solve problems. ProtoGen is aligning the practical, while working toward a world where energy is a basic right that enables economic gains. Contact us today to learn more.

Artificial intelligence has the potential to be dramatically more powerful than any previous scientific advancement. Superintelligence, according to Nick Bostrom at Oxford, is “not just another technology, another tool that will add incrementally to human capabilities.” It is, he says, “radically different,” and it “may be the last invention humans ever need to make.”

Geek Wire, "Summoning the Demon: Why Superintelligence is Humanity’s Biggest Threat"

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