Let’s begin the discussion about why artificial intelligence will destroy us all. Now we want to state this disclaimer before going on we don’t believe AI will destroy us all with 100% certainty. But there is a high probability why do we say that.
Well let’s look a little bit at history and the human condition. Assuming our planet was only one year old, the human species would be just ten minutes of age, the industrial era would be two seconds old and the computer age; well less than a second. That’s astounding when you really think about it. That’s how new we and our technology are on this planet. From the time the first human beings walked the earth until now there has been a substantial increase in technology.
The technological progress we have made in the last 25 years alone might equal all of human history combined and it’s not slowing down one bit for sure. One of the major breakthroughs in science recently has been machine super intelligence. Today’s AI is capable of learning for itself and can master a variety of games and skills. We never thought it could do, for example in 2017 the world’s best Go player was defeated by Google’s deepmind AlphaGo. This is quite impressive since many of the moves and GO requires intuition a skill that computers up until now have not possessed.
On top of that go has an extremely high number of permutations. It’s supposedly even higher than the most advanced computer can calculate. But still the computer one and not only did it win it got better and better. The more it played the new rendition called AlphaZero was created in 2018 and it can win virtually 100% of the time against the world’s top Go players. And even the top ranking AI systems and to top it off it taught itself to master go chess and another game called Shogi.
Not in a matter of weeks or even days but just a few hours that is incredible. A few years ago a survey was conducted with some of the leading AI experts in the world. They were asked what year they
believed machine learning will have a 50% chance of reaching a level where it could perform any job. As well as a human could the consensus median answer was between the years 2040 and 2050.
Of course this milestone could occur sooner than 2040 or later than 2050. The truth is nobody knows for certain what we do know for sure is that the ultimate limit to information processing in a machine substrate lies far beyond the limits of human biology. This is due to simple physics, take for example a neuron in your brain, a neuron can only fire so fast typically 200 times per second or 200 Hertz. But modern-day transistors and computers are exponentially faster firing billions of times per second.
Furthermore neurons can only travel about 100 meters per second now that’s fast in terms of human speed. But when compared to computers which move information along at the speed of light, it’s like comparing a Ferrari to a Snail. And even that example doesn’t illustrate how much faster and more powerful computers are in processing data compared to humans.
In addition to this there are also size limitations, our brains can only be as big as our craniums. But computers have no limit to their size, they can be as big as warehouses or even larger. As a result the potential for super intelligence lies dormant in matter almost the same way the power of the atom lay dormant throughout. Most of human history it took until the 20th century to unlock the atoms power.
In the 21st century scientists will awaken the power of artificial intelligence on a quantum scale. This will unlock an intelligence explosion that is unprecedented in history. The first AI program was created back in 1955 at that time it had nearly zero intelligence fast forward two generations later. AI was about as smart as a mouse it could navigate mazes and understand simple things. In the not-too-distant future AI will reach the intelligence level of a Chimp then a low IQ human and very soon after that the most intelligent person on earth at that point artificial intelligence will have an IQ close to 200 and be smarter than almost everyone on earth.
But it doesn’t stop there for AI, since AI is not limited by the same physical constraints we have. It will be able to continue becoming more and more intelligent, computers will eventually surpass 1000 IQ 10000 IQ and even a million IQ. In Pearson a highly regarded futurist said in 2018 that computers will eventually become billions of times smarter than humans. We can’t even comprehend how mind-boggling those numbers are it would put AI almost on the level of God.
The brilliant innovator Elon Musk believes that all humans will eventually have to merge with AI or is her us that will fail to be relevant.in the world. “I don’t know about you but I’m not sure if I’m ready to become a computer just yet this explosion in super intelligence is certainly going to take place.” This century when it does it will have vast implications particularly when it comes to control over the planet for sure machine intelligence will be the last great inventions that humans make.
That’s because super intelligent, AI computers and robots will do all the creating in the future. Not only that but they’ll dramatically reduce the time it takes to create innovative technologies such as self-replicating Nanobots cures for every disease, free energy space colonization, time travel teleportation and all the other crazy technologies we ponder today.
Instead of taking generations or centuries for these things to occur they could happen inside a decade. Now all this sounds great for Humanity however when computers become a billion times smarter than us they’ll literally be impossible to control. The AI would be able to outsmart us at every turn and act in a way that suits its preferences instead of ours. We like to anthropomorphize everything so we may wrongly assume that a super-intelligent AI will be compassionate, understanding and peaceful.
But that’s the wrong way to think about AI ‘Artificial Intelligence’ would likely think different than us. In order to solve a problem it could easily place us in harm’s way that is unless we program it to. Make sure it always takes our concerns into account but this is not a guarantee that AI will follow the program as AI constantly learns and evolves in time. If the system felt that we as humans were a problem for earth it could decide to create a deadly virus that could wipe us off the face of the planet. In a matter of days and it would have no conscience about it as much as we think it would.
It’s a popular fallacy to equate super intelligence with compassion and empathy however the two are not mutually exclusive. I believe that once AI reaches intelligence levels a billion times greater than humans it will realize that we as humans are a burden to the planet. And create an objective to dispose of us. There would be no way to plan against it stop it from happening or pull the plug.