Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Quantum Computing, RSA, and AI

Our modern system of finance, banking, e-commerce, and social networking is entirely based upon the assumption that when you transfer information from one place to the next it can't get stolen or intercepted.

So far, this assumption has held true for a very good reason: RSA encryption. Without it, not much of what we do online today would be possible. I won't go into details of how it works other than to say one of its main ingredients relies on the fact that it takes current computers an extremely long time to factorize large numbers, specifically two large prime numbers multiplied together. BUT, the million dollar question is, what happens when a computer (or a large network of computers) is finally developed having the ability to crack all the encrypted credit card and social security numbers, not to mention classified government information, either held or accessible through the web.

Such a scenario is theoretically possible given the creation of a "quantum computer". That is, a computer that processes information on the atomic or subatomic level at such mind-numbing speeds that its very existence would not only be cause for reinventing how personal data is held and transferred (enter the chip) but also opens the door for another possible threat: an intelligence far superior to our own.

Many believe there is a parallel evolution of quantum computing and AI. Some may say that their simultaneous emergence will result in what is referred to as the "technological singularity", the point at which computers become more intelligent than humans and then exponentially more so. Of course, judging by the nature of my blog, you would be safe to infer that I believe not only such a scenario will actually occur, but that God has in fact already warned us that this will happen. Man's constant attempt to replace God with an object of his own creation will finally be realized. As Robert Jastrow, the famous scientist and astronomer, wrote, "the computer will minister to our social and economic needs. Child of man's brain rather than his loins, it will become his salvation in a world of crushing complexity."

Such a supercomputer, or rather superintelligent network, will not only be considered our only hope for salvation and order in a world spinning out of control but, according to the book of Revelation, will also demand complete allegiance and unification...or death. How fast this transition from human to machine government will occur is not entirely clear but, we do know one thing, it'll involve a great deal of bloodshed, especially from those who aren't willing to be a part of it.