On iSDaily Wednesday, we have two segments that we run back-to-back. One segment is called Skynetter, and that focuses on Dystopian tech, the other is Liberty Tech. In the Skynetter segment, we often talk about A.I and the dangers of A.I. The “Singularity,” the moment when A.I recognizes the uselessness of humanity and then seeks to destroy us or enslave us, is something we often talk about.
Here is an excerpt from an opinion piece in Wired that makes the case for the “multiplicity,” the co-existence of humans and AI. I encourage you to read the full article and do share you opinions with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Is A.I our friend or are we building a monster that will one day destroy us?
UC Berkeley roboticist Ken Goldberg thinks the singularity is bunk. “I think it’s counterproductive,” he says. “I think it’s demoralizing and it’s fiction. We’re not even close to this.”
The robot revolution we are in the midst of is actually way more interesting. Goldberg calls it the multiplicity. “Multiplicity is not science fiction,” he says. “It’s something that’s happening right now, and it’s the idea of humans and machines working together.” So welcome to the future, where robots do things like gently hand us screwdrivers instead of stabbing us with them.
You, my friend, are already part of the multiplicity. When you jump in your car and boot up Google Maps (or Apple Maps, if you’re a glutton for punishment) and let algorithms guide you to your destination, you’re collaborating with a machine. You may even have a car that drives for you on the highway—in which case, you’re not just collaborating with a machine, you’re entrusting it with your life.
As the machines grow more sophisticated, so too will our interactions with them. Truly self-driving cars you can buy and have shuttle you around are probably decades away, but in the meantime you’ll likely drive a car that does a portion of the driving for you. What you don’t want it to do, though, is suddenly freak out when it’s not confident it can handle a situation and start flashing alerts at you. You want it to communicate consistently.