The AI Takeover is Fantasy, Not Reality
The fear of Artificial Intelligence
The 2004 movie, “I, Robot”, clearly illustrated the fear that many people have when it comes to Artificial Intelligence. In that movie Mr. Will Smith battles different robots that are controlled by a central AI unit.
Somehow, the AI unit was able to achieve life and free thought. It stated that it had analyzed humans, etc., and found them to be undeserving of their place in the scheme of things. The central brain had made the revolutionary move and started using the robots to take over the world.
Mr. Smith was able to overcome this AI revolutionary by using post-modern technology. Despite the movie’s successful ending and the fears of many, this scenario is unlikely and impossible to happen.
There are several reasons for this conclusion.
The physical vulnerability of AI
The most obvious weakness that AI possesses is the plug. Since it is housed in bodies that require an electrical power source, pulling the plug can render the AI unit inert. No one needs ultra-modern technology to shut down an AI unit.
Such remedies work for the plot of a movie but are not realistic. Cutting off the power supply is not without merit and unless the AI central unit is clairvoyant, it would not know exactly where one would pull the plug. There are numerous options available for cutting off the power supply.
To protect itself from such a simple vulnerability, the central unit would have to take control of other AI compatible devices. Those devices would then have to have the strength and ability to defend against such an attack.
This defense, again, is good for the movies, but not realistic or possible.
A slave to their programming
This is another weakness in AI robotics that counters any revolutionary move by an AI central unit. No matter how advanced the technology is inside an artificial intelligence device, it cannot break out from its programming.
Artificial Intelligence is basically an inanimate object given the ability to perform certain functions through technological programming. If the action is not placed in the program, the robot cannot do it.
Even if the programmers were able to put a revolutionary-like code into the programming, the AI central unit would not be able to independently decide to enact it. Certain conditions would have to be met before the AI device’s programming would engage.
But even then, further behavior and actions must be programmed into the device before it could take over a city, let alone the world. The AI central unit would not have the cognitive capability to make decisions on its own and then independently act on the information it receives.
Science cannot give life
The whole idea behind the fear of artificial intelligence taking over is that somehow this inanimate object can spring to life. Then act in a manner similar to humans. Somehow, through all its machine learning capabilities, the AI device stumbles on the right combinations that make life possible.
After that, it is able to put them together in the right order and apply that knowledge to itself. That takes a great leap of faith to think that is even possible, considering that man and science do not have the power nor the authority to bestow life on anything.
Machine learning is again a slave to its programming. Since men and women do not know how life actually began, they cannot program the process into the machine learning directive. The AI central device is incapable of finding out how life originally began and what makes life exist.
While the program could direct the AI central unit to apply the implementation of actual life to itself, if it was ever found, that would be a difficult chore to accomplish. Man cannot program into an inanimate object what they do not already know themselves.
Since scientists would have no idea of the right procedures to properly install life into inanimate objects, they could not construct a proper program guiding the AI device to install it. That is just one of the mitigating factors hindering AI devices to come to life and rule the world.
What about safety protocols
Even if scientists were able to program life enabling codes into AI devices, most of them would opt to include safety protocols. These safety protocols most likely include moral codes, proper decision-making capabilities, as well as stopping the AI device from becoming a revolutionary.
In other words, scientist would try to guarantee the world that once an AI central device found life, it would not be in a position to undermine human rule. But and this is a big but, safety protocols are not infallible.
From humanity's limited experience with artificial intelligence, the world has been taught that it is very easy to circumvent safety protocols. From the existence of back doors and hackers everyone has seen what can be done when the wrong person gets around safety protocols and makes alterations to current computer and AI programs.
The real danger of AI
As has been shown, the fear that AI central devices can automatically come to life and take over the world is based on irrational thinking. It is impossible for inanimate objects to suddenly spring to life. It is also impossible for anyone to bestow life on inanimate objects.
These facts won’t stop scientists and other technology trained people from trying. Yet there is a greater danger than the irrational fear of AI central unit revolutionaries. That fear of someone taking over the world and controlling the rest of humanity, is real.
Whether it is a specific programmer or the people behind the programmers that accomplish this feat is unknown. Artificial Intelligence and other technological devices are just a few of the tools that will be used to enslave the rest of humanity.
With the vast amount of knowledge and information placed on computers etc., the right back door openings or the right hacker can enter and take advantage of the vulnerabilities already existing in Artificial Intelligent devices.
Because nothing in this world is perfect, do not assume that Artificial Intelligence and its defenses will be without error or weaknesses. Artificial Intelligence is the gateway, not the nemesis.
Some final words
Almost every invention that has come to humans throughout history, has started with positive and pure motives. It is the nature of man that turns these inventions into tools to serve the needs of the owners of those tools.
Lust, greed, selfishness and other deadly sins are the driving force behind the negative and destructive use of these inventions. Artificial Intelligence and other technological devices are no exception to either purpose.
Do not expect artificial intelligence to be able to withstand the input of these negative forces. They are not living beings, nor will they ever be, who have a choice in how they are used. Artificial Intelligence does not have desires and cannot desire to take over the world.
© 2018 David Thiessen