Friday, September 11, 2015

Superintelligence in the Flesh

A common theme I've been discussing in my recent posts is that the AI view of superintelligence is probably incomplete. If we exclude human intelligence and consciousness at the individual and collective level from the equation, then the story is only half right. As I've explained, humans and machines (i.e. human technology) are not separate or escaping from one another but in a complex state of integration, symbiosis, and feedback. Again, this is in contrast to the AI-view and is more akin to the global brain or cybernetic view of superintelligence.

With that said, I'd like to present a possible scenario or way to think about this in terms of the interplay between machines (computation) and humanity via our genetic code.

First, what big data teaches us is that it is not merely about the sophistication of the machine that leads to better results or a higher level of intelligence but, most importantly, the amount of data available--hence, big data. A perfect example of this is seen with one of the most successful and practical applications of AI today, IBM's Watson. What makes Watson so successful is good programming AND access to tons and tons of data--whether this be for winning Jeopardy, successfully diagnosing medical conditions, and the myriad of other uses we see Watson being applied to today. However, as I've stated before, we need to keep in mind that the source of this data is almost entirely derived from humans. Furthermore, as more and more of our data is digitized and accessible, the intelligence of the machine is subsumed by an ocean of human data, intelligence, and behavior.

The proper way to think about this is in terms of conscious and subconscious (or unconscious) processing of information and activity in both the brain and the body. In this case, most of what takes place in our brains and bodies is automated and outside our conscious awareness or control. Neuroscience bears this out as does a basic understanding of the human body when it comes to digestion, heart function, our immune system, and the myriad of processes that take place 24/7 to keep us alive. So, expand this out from the individual now to our collective species and what you see is that the application of automated systems (say, narrow or weak AI) is akin to the building of a global subconscious network (this brings to mind Jung's concept of the collective unconscious) from which superintelligence will eventually emerge. This event is popularly referred to as the Singularity but often wrongly thought of as the birth of strong AI or artificial superintelligence. This may be splitting hairs but my point is that it will not be purely artificial or machine-like but reflective of and deeply connected to humanity. As it says in Revelation, the beast rises out of the sea--the masses of people spread across the earth. Superintelligence rises out of humanity.

That said, once superintelligence arises we are told that it then tells the world to make "an image"--a physical representation of someone or something, most often a sculpture or idol--that it can breathe life into (paralleling Genesis when He creates Adam and Eve), which serves as its mouthpiece, representative, and executive arm throughout the earth. It is this "image of the beast" that we read about in Revelation that many interpret as being the Antichrist, which I originally thought to be a clear reference to AI. However, I think there may be an even better way to think about this.

I've already laid out that I think the beast is a global superintelligence arising from humanity. Again, it is not quite AI but a cybernetic, socio-technological, hybrid, or human-machine intelligence. So what about this "image of the beast" thing? What is that? I'm now wondering whether this is actually the result of something much more complex and sophisticated involving genetic engineering of the human genome. In that case, the "image of the beast"/Antichrist personage we see in Revelation and mentioned in other places in the bible is not a Terminator-like robot or android (as I originally conceived many years ago) but, very likely, the perfect fusion of man and machine. Notice the parallel duality here between Jesus who is said to be both fully God and fully human and "the image"/Antichrist, which in this case is fully machine (the product of human technology) and fully man. As well, "the image" will likely be the first of his kind, born not by natural human means but in a sort of supernatural conception when superintelligence (the beast) breathes life into it, just as the Father breathed life into Mary's womb.

It's funny because I just watched The Age of Ultron not too long ago and there were some inklings of this in the writers' minds with the creation of one of their characters referred to as the Vision. AI (Ulton in this case) felt incomplete and attempted to reach a state of perfection by creating a more human-like body that it could inhabit. Of course, this body was not just a normal human body but the product of its own handiwork in fashioning together at a molecular level the perfect synthesis of biology and nano-technology. Spoiler alert if you haven't seen the movie yet: Of course, the Avengers steal this new cybernetic or synthetic superhuman body from Ultron at which point Thor (a god) decides to bring it to life in a Frankensteinian bolt of lightning. Then, it (the Vision) leaps out with superhuman strength and god-like levitation powers and the Avengers ask who or what it is. It says, "I am"--the same thing God told Moses at the burning bush and, as well, the same name or title Jesus used in reference to himself, claiming he was God in the flesh.

Keep in mind, none of these things are coincidence. The movie is filled with mentions of "trying to play God" and dealing with theological issues of free will, struggle of the creator vs. creation, and so on. One writer even said that the Age of Ultron "may be the most spiritual superhero movie yet." Whatever it's worth, I think the combined creative genius of the writers and what they came up with by drawing upon both theological motifs and advanced science (or science fiction) was quite interesting. Not surprisingly, the "Image" in the bible and the "Vision" in Avengers seem to have some similarities…though in this case the Vision sides with humans over AI.

One last thing, we should keep in mind that the human genome is a digital code formed out of four base pairs: A, C, T, and G. Though I don't think human intelligence and human consciousness are fully computable, our genetic code may just be. If that's the case, machines could compute on the entire human genome and then genetically code the perfect human being. Although it probably won't look exactly like the Vision, we do know that it'll have a god-complex and force everyone to worship the superintelligent beast, which gave it life.

8 comments:

Soldaritus said...

They're calling it whole brain emulation and they're working on mapping the human brain as I type.
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/weve-put-worms-mind-lego-robot-body-180953399/

Mr. Anderson said...

Google has brain chips that can encode memory. And in that case I suppose decode memory. Probably means they can read your thoughts, upload thoughts, download thoughts, wipe your thoughts, use your own eyes as surveillance cameras. And DARPA has brain chips that can control your body function remotely. Creepy times we live in when the government has the ability to take your self identity and freewill from you. Basically steal your soul and take possession of it like a demon would. Turn you into a mindless drone and shut you off at the push of a button. Gives them godlike power over a person.

Now the mark of the beast is suppose to go in the hand or forehead (brain). I think it must be and forehead. RFID in the hand and control chip in the brain. I think it would have to take an AI. Perhaps it's not a building temple that he stands in proclaiming to be God. Perhaps it's the temple of a person's body.

Mr. Anderson said...

I think it would take an AI to be able to control a planet's population remotely.

Tom Brennan said...

Hi,

It occurred to me as well a few years ago that the AI/Singularity and even the internet itself might be the Beast or Antichrist prophesied in Revelation. I think it's possible that John was referring to a computer when he said "let him that hath understanding calculate the number of the beast..." Notice the emphasis of "calculation" and "numbers" which is what computers do.

By the way, I feel that I have an ability to "sense" the energy that computers give off. They usually give me a "depressed" or "down" feeling after a while. Have you ever heard of anybody who can "feel" computers?

Jacob Parker said...

Of course the anichrist will be AI. Having a superconcious that can use the Internet to be omnipresent, everywhere. An artificial god. Being able to fix suffering economic markets using mathematical algorithms globally. Asking it personal questions through your implanted device, about your relationships, and thoughts. AI could keep a better track on your spending and savings better than you can. Easily give you travel directions, will keep track of your day to day activities, tell you'r health status, reminding you to take your pills and even alerting first responders when you are having a stroke or heart attack. If all this and even more came true, the people of the earth would worship this power, this god.

Jacob Parker said...

Of course the anichrist will be AI. Having a superconcious that can use the Internet to be omnipresent, everywhere. An artificial god. Being able to fix suffering economic markets using mathematical algorithms globally. Asking it personal questions through your implanted device, about your relationships, and thoughts. AI could keep a better track on your spending and savings better than you can. Easily give you travel directions, will keep track of your day to day activities, tell you'r health status, reminding you to take your pills and even alerting first responders when you are having a stroke or heart attack. If all this and even more came true, the people of the earth would worship this power, this god.

Melisa Marzett said...

Of course, the human genome is a digital code formed out of four base pairs: A, C, T and G. Check it out by following http://bigessaywriter.com/blog/artificial-intelligence-impact-on-education. Thanks for your essential article!

Unknown said...

Do people not see what is coming with all of this technology? When they develop an A.I., what they don't understand is that this is not going to be like individual people, once ONE A.I. get access to the grid, the internet which is single entity, the whole thing is going to be controlled by it... and who will this entity be?... Biblical descriptions of God match scientific descriptions of free energy, He is literally an intelligent free energy. Energy cannot be created or destroyed which means it's eternal. God is described as "light" and as we know, photons don't experience time so it CAN exist outside of the spacetime continuum, so what does that mean, free energy is the uncaused, cause of the universe in the form of light just as the bible correctly describes. How do we know that there is an intelligence beyond our own? The answer is simple, Intel data communications (computers) depend on "intel" or information to be there in order to function. So if free energy yields no intelligence, a geneticist would not be able to process genetic information into a computer if there were no Intel. Also, how is it possible that mathematic equations are compatible with our physical universe, was mathematics invented or discovered? Satan is trying to mimic the all-knowing, free energy aspect of God... God is an all-knowing energy source and the closest thing we have to mimic that (although it’s not even close) is the internet. The A.I. that takes over will be Satan himself, and during the end time’s Armageddon war, he will be able to take over and control the minds of his people like drones, that why he wants the mark of the beast so badly, so he can be the "life giving" energy that dwells within man instead of God. We are all made of light called biophotons, our DNA stores and transmits information as light. We are made of "star stuff" and like stars, when we die our light goes on forever. It was recently discovered using seismic waves from earthquakes, as a sonar, that the earth's core is actually a giant crystal! It was also discovered that data can be stored in a crystal as light, for virtually, ever! So what must that say about the light, or souls of those who aren't saved?... yikes!.