The Singularity is Near

Have you ever wondered about a likely future of the human race? Asides the expected environmental issues what do you think will happen to humans with the way we are going with technology?

There is a popular quote in science fiction and futurology circles, “the singularity is near”. The singularity being referred to in this context is the technological singularity. The statement has comprehensive meanings such as the one on Wikipedia, but in simple terms it means that machines will overtake humanity eventually.

Experts and scientists involved in the matter have all but concluded that it is not a question of “if” but when it will happen. I came across this interesting revelation in a wonderful article and I would love to share that knowledge with my readers.

It is a long article that comprehensively enunciates the rate of machine development and the position we are currently. It makes detailed talks on progression of artificial intelligence to Artificial General intelligence, which culminates in artificial superintelligence.

Artificial specific intelligence are machines that are good in specific stuff and do not have capability to improve or be improved beyond those specifics. An example of this is factory assembly robots or autonomous vacuum cleaners. Another example is computers that are designed to play chess.

Artificial general intelligence (AGI) is a type of machine that can do different things, or a machine that can harness the specific skills of various singularly skilled machines to be able to help in different stuff. A solid example of this is our smartphones, connected to other machines containing knowledge archives (web servers), deliver news, plot our routes and travel details. We can do practically anything with our smartphones because it is connected to other computers and is able to harness the power of those specific computers. Another example of an immature version of artificial general intelligence is our smartphone voice assistants such as Siri, Google Now or Cortana. That appears to be the stage we are currently. Our total reliance on machines is without doubt now. These AGI entities are limited by one flaw, they lack a characteristic of which once it’s acquired they become self aware, that is they become Artificial Superintelligence (ASI)

Here is the zenith, this is when machines develop complete autonomy and ability to develop their intelligence without human intervention.

This is the technological singularity.

We allegedly end up totally under their whims at this stage. This may happen sooner rather than later.

Questions as to how all these events are likely to take place soon, the signs that they are happening already and why such an interesting future is inevitable are all answered in this fantastic write up. The paragraphs above are just a summary of a summary. The piece is fun to read and relate with.

The AI Revolution: Road to Superintelligence

and Part 2…

The AI Revolution: Our Immortality or Extinction


2 comments for “The Singularity is Near

  1. Eye_bee_kay
    June 2, 2015 at 6:10 am

    I have been hearing about artificial intelligence since like when I was in secondary school. The limiting factor has been, and will always, be the fact the intelligence is “artificial”.

    No matter the level of intelligence built into an automation, there are aspects of intelligence that are not machine applicable. Things like intuition, premonition, precognition and pure old volition.

    You make a computer that learns, the problem remains with the fact that it can only “learn” within the ambit of the imagination of the programmer. Until we can have computers that can discretionarily create other computers and things totally from free will or imagination, ‘artificial intelligence’ would just remain that… Artificial, and would never rival our “natural stupidity”.. Which make us superior to any automation a human can dream up.

    That’s my view.

    Now, let me go read those articles on romanticism.

  2. steve
    June 6, 2015 at 2:35 pm

    Interesting. But I believe we are still far from the age of robots dominating the world. Regardless of what the sci-fi films give us, if we do not have an automation capable of going beyond the programmer and brcome creative with self preservation and self sustaining as well as with ability to independently create other robots, then we are not there yet.

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