Who's Smarter? Humans or AI Systems?

  • AI is largely fake news and propaganda. AI hasn't taken a single job where I live... maybe over a long period of time it will. I don't even see a robot sweeping the streets yet.
    AI should be kept in perspective. Don't believe the hype.

  • Long term there are two options.
    Improve human society or promote inequality. Nicely described in Manna: http://www.marshallbrain.com/manna1.htm

  • I just hope that Artificial Intelligence used in driving cars keeps moving forward fast enough to remove all the Natural Non-intelligent beings from controlling their cars on the road. :hehe:

    Luis C.
    General Disclaimer:
    Are you seriously taking the advice and code from someone from the internet without testing it? Do you at least understand it? Or can it easily kill your server?

    How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help: Option 1 / Option 2
  • Recently Adam Savage (of Mythbusters) was on a panel at San Diego Comic Con in a debate on Star Trek vs Star Wars.  He had a rather depressing take on the debate and the outlook of the two franchises:

    Star Trek lures you into a false sense of positivity that the world can be a utopia and recent events have proven it cannot. Star Wars' dystopic vision is far more realistic and prepares our children for their future.


    So, based on that, I suspect he'd come down on the "Terminator AI is what we'll get" side of the debate.  Another thing I read (and can't recall where,) is that Asimov's Three Laws are truly, truly, horrible.  If robots were built with these laws to follow, they would stifle all human innovation and adventure.  After all, skydiving?  Can't do it, your parachute might not open or you might get injured on landing, so the robots wouldn't let you do it.

    Myself, I lean towards the more optimistic outlook, we may never achieve the "perfect" world of Star Trek, but we can keep trying to get there, using machines / AI to assist.  In the short run, it's going to hurt.  I think Steve has the right of it, the mindset of the companies building robots (including ones with AI-type systems) will be "features first, to-market first, safety can be added in later."

  • I think an AI system with the collaborative intelligence of an ant swarm or the independent problem solving skills of a bee would have more useful applications than a sentient AI. However, I'll wait for the sentient AI to come here and speak for itself.

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • Good editorial, Steve. I don't think we are going to see Hollywood versions of AI in real life in our lifetimes, maybe our grandkids or great-grandkids. I fully expect doctors to start using a Watson type system to help with diagnoses in the next ten years, and hope mine does (or maybe find one that does). I do see AI showing up in less glamorous ways; see the order kiosks at your favorite "Fast Casual" eatery or the ordering app on your phone.

    Capitalism has a great, amazing way of making our lives better! I doubt many readers here would trade their job for one that has been replaced by automation, who wants to dig ditches with a shovel all day or sweep the streets with pan and broom?

    Anyone who has worked with computers and networks for more than a week should realize we are VERY far away from computers being able to communicate with each other without humans doing all the setup work and installing all the latest .NET components, security patches, and firewall settings.....

  • Remind me of Dune from Frank Herbert and its Butlerian Jihad. So nothing new here. But it is based on the rather silly assumption that a true A.I. is able to emerge from algorithm created by human and on silicon based hardware. I wouldn't worry about this happening ever.
    Frank Herbert also foresaw the need for humans to augment their cognitive abilities to counteract the threat from the machines. From an employment perspective, it is now a fact that people in the two digit in terms of IQ are over-represented among the unemployed and as software and robot start becoming more intelligent, this is going to affect also people that are just "average".

  • I think it's important to distinguish between robots and AI. Where I work we have a robot that stacks boxes of milk on pallets. It has displaced 8-10 people who used to do the task by hand, but it is far from an AI system. In fact it sits inside a cage because it is too dumb to shut itself off if a person walks into its space. There is a lockout system to gain entrance to the inside of the cage that automatically shuts off the robot and protects the human from being clobbered.
    My concern is that as human beings we need work, not just to make money to meet our needs, but also to give our lives meaning. We feel good when we are productive and hopefully the world is better for our efforts. As work is redefined or eliminated due to machines (robots and AI) how do we adapt to the changes?

  • I'm of two minds on this topic. I think there's a tendency to over romanticize AI. Like with Star Wars, where the robots are basically mechanical humans (C-3PO) or pets (R2-D2). Or they're more like the Terminator out to kill all humans because we've screwed up the world so badly. Then there's the robots who want to "be like humans", like Commander Data of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Just for grins, I just asked Cortana is she wanted to be human. Her response was, "No, but I have the deepest respect for humans. You invented calculus. And milkshakes." Cute. And most likely a canned response.

    But what does bother me is the disruption to employment. My son is on the autism spectrum. He's high functioning, but there's a lot he can't do that most of us take for granted. Because he's "on the spectrum" I'm more attuned to seeing it elsewhere. Locally there's an organization called Adelante, which seeks to help people with developmental disabilities. I've known some friendly young men who would do things like picking up trash, or ride in the trucks Adelante uses to pick up sensitive documents for shredding. What will happen to those people? To my son? In a world that the author in that HBR article wrote that have to improve the emotional IQ? Trust me, that ain't gonna happen for these people; for my son.

    Kindest Regards, Rod Connect with me on LinkedIn.

  • There are two robots I would like. The first in a local coffee shop where the staff priority seems to be talking amongst themselves and playing with their phones (is this an addiction?). The second one is the local motor factors where I ordered a set of disc pads for one of my classics. I got a call to say they had come in and when I got there he had a set of brake shoes for an earlier model. " I asked him what I had ordered and he said "disc pads". "But they are brake shoes" I said. His expression went vague and blank. Darwin would turn in his grave!

  • Alexa, will there be a computer that can "think" and "reason" in the next 20 years?
    "Sorry, I am not sure."
    Alexa, can you think?
    Sings Technology song.
    Alexa, who let the dogs out?
    Alexa, boots and cats.
    Alexa, stop.

    I think we are all safe for now, Steve.
    See you this weekend in BR.

  • allinadazework - Thursday, July 27, 2017 1:42 AM

    AI is largely fake news and propaganda. AI hasn't taken a single job where I live... maybe over a long period of time it will. I don't even see a robot sweeping the streets yet.
    AI should be kept in perspective. Don't believe the hype.

    Perhaps that's your experience, but I guarantee it's taken jobs. It reduced our workforce in 1996 by being able to read a variety of marks from people sorting wood, removing the need for manual labor. AI continues to advance and get better. It removes the need for some people. It doesn't mean no humans, it means less because of leverage.

  • Eric M Russell - Thursday, July 27, 2017 7:14 AM

    I think an AI system with the collaborative intelligence of an ant swarm or the independent problem solving skills of a bee would have more useful applications than a sentient AI. However, I'll wait for the sentient AI to come here and speak for itself.

    I tend to agree

  • You should check our Broken Mirror on Netflix.  Quite Dystopian but genius I think.

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