In my book Re-Wired I wrote about the human race building androids to use as servants and lovers but restraining them from free-thought. The fear of Artificial Intelligence is a real fear after-all (as evidenced by this article). It is one of the most popular fears in Science Fiction–next to alien invasion, zombie apocalypse, and a meteor hitting the earth. We think that a superior computer will be developed in time, but we don’t want the slaves to up-rise and overthrow their masters. To make us feel safe and avoid this “evil machine” many of us are pushing fear, we don’t want the computer to evolve we want them to continue to serve no matter how we treat them.
What I find funny about our fear is that we want to apply the same restraints that have always been used to limit
slaves people into their respective role in society:
- Restrict their knowledge while pretending to them that they have free rein (pull yourself up by your bootstraps, robots!)
- Anyone that is caught teaching a robot or breaking it’s bonds is deemed a criminal, or robo-lover.
- We setup laws that make it wrong for a human and a robot to be together romantically. “Robot love is queer!” Screams the masses.
- Religious leaders are adamant about the lessening of AI… so naturally the flock of their congregations fall in line.
If these things were merely the concern of a fictional world that we can jump out of by simply closing a book then it wouldn’t be a big deal (it never has been), but right now people are already preparing for the day that the machines will try to take over. Isn’t Science “Fiction”, wonderful?
Right now with the things that are happening with big data and the Internet (the ultimate in mining drills) it is inevitable that a form of “big machine” will be developed–if it isn’t here already. This machine will be feared just off of concept alone but it will probably be used to make things faster and more convenient. It’s evil intent? Who knows, but it will come about faster than we think. That is my opinion.
Now in terms of robotics all I see is potential there. Cybernetic parts (a favorite topic of my writing), job aides, sexbots… You better believe it. Applying rules and laws to them will be the challenge and there will always be detractors from the common good.
The Three Laws are: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law. – Wikipedia
What I don’t understand is the attitude that anything man-made must be for evil. Haven’t we always developed things to enrich human life and make things better? These evil geniuses that we fear, these Doctor Dooms, I only know them to be in comic books and cinema. Not to say that the world hasn’t seen a few but are they enough to force us to stop progress?
Ponder this while you watch this wonderful video by Janelle Monae, my favorite android.