The last invention we will ever make and the last challenge we will ever face. - Stephen Hawking
The more I research and investigate the exponential growth of technology, especially artificial intelligence (AI), the more I realize that beyond its disruptive impact on our current employment landscape, there are extremely important questions to be answered about what this means for the evolution of humans.
According to Wikipedia, "technological singularity is a hypothetical event in which artificial general intelligence (constituting, for example, intelligent computers, computer networks, or robots) would be capable of recursive self-improvement (progressively redesigning itself), or of autonomously building ever smarter and more powerful machines than itself, up to the point of a runaway effect—an intelligence explosion that yields an intelligence surpassing all current human control or understanding. Because the capabilities of such a superintelligence may be impossible for a human to comprehend, the technological singularity is the point beyond which events may become unpredictable or even unfathomable to human intelligence."
Predictions by those in the IT world estimate this possibility to occur as early as 2035 for AI to match human intelligence and about 2050 for it to become superintelligence. Currently numbers such as $15 trillion US dollars are being given as the total amount being invested in start-up initiatives and research labs by companies such as Google, Amazon and Uber to only name a few. China is comparing its AI initiative to the Apollo missions, as it encourages Baidu, the country's largest search engine company, to bring together the world's best scientist, researchers and engineers to work on fundamental AI research.
For those who may think the above to be an exaggeration, keep in mind an observation made by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore in 1965. He noticed that the number of transistors per square inch on integrated circuits had doubled every year since their invention. This statement has now been morphed into what is being called Moore's Law, which compares linear growth (human) to exponential growth (technology). With our 30 steps forward, AI will take one billion steps. This pretty much leaves the human race in the dust, so to speak.
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