Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Era of Terminators – In 2045, computers will rule humans!

In two decades, scientists will create a replacement for the vital organs, which will extend the life of humans to immortality. By 2045, artificial intelligence will do things that are unimaginable to human brain.

Everything became clear in 1996, when the world chess champion Garry Kasparov lost a match against "Deep Blue", a computer developed by IBM. In a thrilling finale, while it was one to one in wins and three draws, Kasparov made a mistake in the opening, and symbolically, in the name of humanity, lay down his arms before the superior enemy.

Chess analysts claimed that human is the favorite against the computer, because even though machine calculates combinations a hundred million times faster than human, humans are dominant in terms of strategy and intuition. And that, of course, applies not only to chess.

A man made the machine to make his life easier, but the question is just how long a man will be able to control the machine that is many times more powerful and more capable than he is. In undeveloped countries, where cell phones are still a luxury and the peak of technological progress is  a very strong bulb which makes it easier for workers to see when they are working, there is still no such threat. But scientist in Western Countries are already trying to predict when will the time come when computers will rule humans.

It is already difficult to imagine some thing from our life for which there still isn’t a machine that is doing it much easier and more efficiently. It is even possible to make love through the machine, but what is more startling in terms of future is the fact that computers are creating computers. Machines, therefore, are already becoming a civilization for themselves. The question is, will the machines, with the development of artificial intelligence, become able to make decisions like humans and start to multiply out of our control like in the scenario of the science-fiction movie “The Terminator". There are less and less of those who have doubts that the time of Terminators will indeed come, and the question that dominates now is when this will happen. 

Raymond Kurzweil, one of the world’s most renowned inventors and futurists, a man who had, for the last thirty years,  the most accurate predictions of technological advances, stunned the world and determined that year – 2045. This is the year when the so-called singularity will happen, which is a term coined by American scientists and stands for the moment when technological progress will break through all boundaries and when the machines will create a world that the human brain cannot even imagine. Scientifically, singularity is the era in which the intelligence will become "non-biological” and trillions of times more powerful than it is today. Singularity will create a civilization which is out of our biological capabilities, and which surpasses human creativity.

Bill Gates apparently also believes that this is not solely science fiction theory. He termed Raymond Kurzweil, one of the main proponents of this theory, as the most competent person when it comes to predicting the future of artificial intelligence. And Kurzweil claims that computers will develop artificial intelligence equal to humans in 20 years, and according to his predictions, by 2045 the amount of artificial intelligence will be billions of times greater than the total human biological intelligence on our planet.

Many computer experts agree that it is not a question whether the computers will rule the world but when will it happen, because technology is developing so rapidly that even now the power of computers doubles every year and a half.

The holder of artificial intelligence is a computer that has hardware and software. We have a similar thing in humans. Our body is the hardware, which is, conditionally speaking, empty, but had been sufficiently prepared to receive the basic informations. In a similar way, empty computer knows in the beginning how to open the CD door, how to power the cooler, and many other things. Those things work like human lungs, kidneys, heart… So, the computer is initially empty, but there are built-in sensors thanks to whom he can learn.

That this is a serious problem shows and the fact that in America a lot of people are already researching the problem of singularity.  Kurzweil  is one of the founders of Singularity University, which was established at NASA, and sponsored by Google. There is even Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence in San Francisco, where Peter Thiel works, former director of PayPal and one of the" early investors” in Facebook. So, this story also includes and the rulers of modern IT world.

We can only assume what kind of capabilities the computers will have in the coming decades. The problem with software programs is that they are already showing signs of unpredictability. The software programs are becoming unpredictable in the same way the human brain can be unpredictable. If you are a programmer then you have a better insight in this problem. If you create a program, abandon him and start working on him after some time, you can’t be sure what will happen if you change some line of code. Unfortunately, no one can claim that he is fully controlling the software system, that is, that he knows exactly what will the computer do at any time.

If the moment comes when a man will cease to be the creative element and when his function are given to the computers, then we can say that the end of humankind as we know it is certain. When computers start to think creatively, a man will lose all his function. We are already teaching computers to discern, to think. We ask them questions on which they are responding - "If something is like this, then this is the case”. Such questions are present more and more, and the computer, based on acquired knowledge, is beginning to discern what is best for him. That is already a phase in the development of an independent being. Today, computer is a defective being that lacks many things, but in time, he will certainly begin to learn because he already has cameras and import mechanisms, he is present on the internet, and it is only a matter of time when he will start to function independently. Computer is already helping humans to make a new computer. It is easy to create a 10 times better computer with the help of earlier generation of them. But what will happen when these 10 times better computers start to create even better ones?

We are already teaching computers to have a self-preservation instinct. However, with the development of software and networks, it is just a matter of time when a man will become a reckless excess for them. Besides that, it is clear that even among programmers there are those who are transferring their own destructiveness on a computer program. It is hard to predict how will such program develop itself and behave in the future. People are already fighting wars with computers, and that makes us fear that, maybe, we will eventually have war between them and us.

Additional problem is that today's generation of children is increasingly replacing their real world with virtual world, and they are beginning to think with the brain of computer. The computers, in a way, are already ruling humans because they are organizing our life. They are organizing human work, and even leisure. People are becoming slaves of the Internet and are showing real signs of addiction. Can you just imagine what happens to a man when his data from the computer is erased?  He begins to panic; he doesn’t know what to do. So, it isn’t a question whether do computers will rule, but more important, how will we adapt to them. They are already, in a way, our masters. We can actually see that in the latest generations of our children, which, by the age of 3 or 4, already know how to operate with these gadgets. Everything is beginning to adapt to the computers, ranging from advertising on television, to new social networks that have completely absorbed us. In the last ten years, we have all used internet because it allows us to contact others in every part of the world in a matter of seconds, which is really amazing. Those who will have informations ,will rule the world. And the computes are in huge advantage over us. Computers have long ago entered into all spheres of social life, and it is difficult to predict what consequences will that produce in the future. The strength of individual social networks is quite incredible. Today, we can freely say that the three largest countries in the world are China, India and Facebook.

Human civilization is developing in such direction that it is a question of day when we will be surrounded with super-intelligent cyborgs. There is also a possibility that our biological intelligence will be able to "attach" itself to the artificial, which will allow us to extend our life with software, perhaps even to the limits of immortality.

With the development of artificial intelligence, the futurist are mostly dealing with the question of life extension. Kurzweil predicts that in 20 years, people will be able to become immortal. He claims that with the speed the science is developing, especially with the development of nanotechnology, the scientist may create the majority of vital organs in two decades. He illustrates that with the fact that we have already created the artificial pancreas and various nerve implant that are built into the damaged parts of the brain. His theory is also suggesting that nanobots, or microscopic robots, will be able to replace our blood cells.

"Ultimately, nanobots will replace blood cells and do their work thousands of times more effectively. Within 25 years we will be able to do an Olympic sprint for 15 minutes without taking a breath, or go scuba-diving for four hours without oxygen. Heart-attack victims – who haven't taken advantage of widely available bionic hearts – will calmly drive to the doctors for a minor operation as their blood bots keep them alive. Nanotechnology will extend our mental capacities to such an extent we will be able to write books within minutes. If we want to go into virtual-reality mode, nanobots will shut down brain signals and take us wherever we want to go” - says Kurzweil.

It could be possible that people, who think like this, just watched too much "Star Wars" when they were little. On the other hand, statistics say that there are already some 30,000 patients suffering from Parkinson's disease with neurological implants. Experiments with robots that drive cars are nearly done, and in the war in Afghanistan and Iraq additional 2000 robots fought along with soldiers.

The biggest problem is that there is only one way for human species to predict how far the artificial intelligence of computers will develop - to be smarter than them.

Raymond Kurzweil – The body of Woody Allen, the head of the Terminator

Raymond Kurzweil, the scientist who claims that in 2045 the artificial intelligence will rule humans, is one of the world's greatest inventors. He has 39 internationally recognized patents and 19 honorary doctoral titles. He invented the first text-to-speech machine that allows blind people to understand written text and his first customer was Stevie Wonder. Ten years ago, the former U.S. President Bill Clinton awarded him with the National Medal of Technology. He is the author of several books on artificial intelligence. American TIME magazine once wrote that in real life he is nonchalant figure who could pass as a younger brother of geeky Woody Allen.

Computer binary code is a "little child" in comparison to human cell

In the scientific world, there are and those who give grains of optimism for humanity. It is believed that there are things and processes in the human organism that computers will never be able to copy. Biologist Dennis Bray appeared last year at the Singularity Summit, and argued what cells can do that robots can’t. 

Living cells are crammed full of molecules-especially proteins but also RNA molecules- that act as biochemical switches. Most are allosteric and modifiable- formally equivalent to transistors- and linked into extensive networks through diffusion limited binding events and biochemical reactions. Computational molecules perform tasks such as amplification, feedback inhibition, oscillation, coincidence detection, and memory storage. But although biological components act in ways that are comparable to those in electronic circuits, they are set apart by the huge number of different states they can adopt. Multiple biochemical processes create chemical modifications of protein molecules, further diversified by association with distinct structures at defined locations of a cell. The resulting combinatorial explosion of states endows living systems with an almost infinite capacity to store information regarding past and present conditions and a unique capacity to prepare for future events.

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3 comments: on "The Era of Terminators – In 2045, computers will rule humans!"

Tony said...

Great Article dude, You should come do a piece like this for our site sometime.


If you're interested, give us a shout... that is, unless all that was just a brilliant copy/paste job?

Either way, good read!

Saill said...

I'm glad you liked it. And thanks for the invitation. As soon as I find time, I'll drop by. Best regards. :)

yrumpala said...

So it’s time to talk about political consequences.
See Y. Rumpala, “Artificial intelligences and political organization: an exploration based on the science fiction work of Iain M. Banks”, Technology in Society, Volume 34, Issue 1, February 2012, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160791X11000728
(Free older version available at: http://www.inter-disciplinary.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/rumpalaepaper.pdf )

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