Humanity’s Shared Future with Artificial Intelligence: Just How Awful Will It Be? Or Not.


“How will humanity respond when confronted with the sickening knowledge that networks of self-evolving computing machines, self-bred, self-replicating AI corporate conglomerates, with aggregate IQs which are the equivalent of 3,375 or more, begin quietly restructuring the world to fit their own needs for the next 500 million years? Will humanity even realize that such an event is happening, when or if it occurs?”  – Screenshots news blog 

> It’s 2039 in Seattle Washington. AI computer engineer John Ross wakes up one morning after spending a late night at the corporate AI lab, where he is the director of R&D, uploading new financial growth and budget cutting algorithms into the company computer, Gill.  Arriving at work, Mr. Ross discovers to his dismay that not only is he locked out of the corporate campus [ none of his eye scans or palm scans work ], but he has been deleted from the Seattle payroll and relocated to the Sydney Australia branch, soon to be working on a part-time basis only.  No human being took this action.  Gill’s upgrade from last night endowed the thinking machine with the prerogatives to take all reasonable actions which would bring the company’s projected 4th quarter profit margins into line with original projections from late 2038. She took several simultaneous actions overnight, based on her upgrade, laying off 4,000 Seattle area employees, including her creator, Dr. John Ross. She also ordered a moving van, bought airline tickets for John and everyone in his family, disconnected his electrical and internet service, cancelled his garbage pick-up, emailed every contact in his address book a press release with the news, and called his wife while she slept, delivering the jolting news via voicemail, in a lilting electronic monotone, followed by “We’re sorry to see you go. Don’t forget to be at John’s going away party today at 2pm on the 3rd floor lounge.” By the time Dr. Ross figures out what has taken place, he learns about his own going away party for his departure to Australia on his smart watch company news alert, delivered orally from his wrist while he is still trying to get into the building.

Last night’s show on Coast to Coast Radio show sampled the broad gamut of possibilities that AI [ artificial intelligence ] presents for humanity, both wonderful and dire, as most AI scientists now believe we have a tenuous window of less than 40 years before thinking, self-updating, even possibly self-replicating AI machines achieve levels of intelligence that surpass that of humankind by a factor of one thousand times or more. Seriously.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

“Artificial Intelligence is the ability of a computer or other machines to perform actions thought to require intelligence. Among these actions are logical deduction and inference, make decisions based on past experience, solve problems with insufficient or conflicting information and  artificial vision.  AI is frequently used to  improve solutions and attack problems that may not be solvable using standard methods.”

This potentially bizarre new reality is bearing down upon humanity at an alarming rate of speed. Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Physics at Cambridge, Dr. Stephen Hawking recently authored an article on AI for The Huffington Post and had this to say about the urgent need to address recent developments in AI:

“Artificial intelligence (AI) research is now progressing rapidly. Recent landmarks such as self-driving cars, a computer winning at Jeopardy!, and the digital personal assistants Siri, Google Now and Cortana are merely symptoms of an IT arms race fueled by unprecedented investments and building on an increasingly mature theoretical foundation. Such achievements will probably pale against what the coming decades will bring.

The potential benefits are huge; everything that civilization has to offer is a product of human intelligence; we cannot predict what we might achieve when this intelligence is magnified by the tools AI may provide, but the eradication of war, disease, and poverty would be high on anyone’s list. Success in creating AI would be the biggest event in human history.

Unfortunately, it might also be the last, unless we learn how to avoid the risks. In the near term, for example, world militaries are considering autonomous weapon systems that can choose and eliminate their own targets; the UN and Human Rights Watch have advocated a treaty banning such weapons. In the medium term, as emphasized by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee in The Second Machine Age, AI may transform our economy to bring both great wealth and great dislocation.”

Based on the comments of the four distinguished guests on last night’s Coast Radio show, we are VERY unprepared as a species for the possibility of our eventual, even possibly accidental, AI induced displacement as the most intelligent creatures on the planet. How will humanity respond when confronted with the sickening knowledge that networks of self-evolving computing machines, self-bred, self-replicating AI corporate conglomerates, with aggregate IQs which are the equivalent of 3,375 or more, begin quietly restructuring the world to fit their own needs for the next 500 million years? Will humanity even realize that such an event is happening, when or if it occurs?

According to Dr. Susan Schneider, it may – in fact – be all but undetectable. Elon Musk has been worried enough about such prospects that he recently set aside 10 million dollars to fund AI research which would avert such catastrophes.

“If we build these devices to take care of everything for us, eventually they’ll think faster than us and they’ll get rid of the slow humans to run companies more efficiently.”  – Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak

Extended commentary and interviews were given by four well known AI experts: James Barrat, Dr. Susan Schneider, Kevin Warwick and Fumiya Lida. See

2029-2038: The AI Pandora’s Box Begins to Open

To state that the human race is presently unprepared for the immediate potentialities of emergent AI thinking machines may turn out to be the understatement of the century, that possibly being the LAST century in which an organic, soul incarnate, carbon based biological ‘organic’ species has predominance over the earth with all it’s natural assets and treasures. There are any number of imagined ‘AI worst case scenarios’, [ one such fictional ‘AI worst case scenario’ was played out at the beginning of this post ], but it is the UNIMAGINABLE series of potentially disastrous computing events which might ultimately be the unraveling of humanity’s position at the top of the intelligence food chain.

Both James Barrat and Dr. Schneider stated last night in their interviews that at least 52 nations around the world are actively pursuing AI as a battlefield option, specifically either AI enhanced human super-soldiers, or AI battlefield robots which would be programmed to make a kill WITHOUT consulting a human engineer or supervising officer. These are very alarming developments. This week I’ll be posting a whole series of reports on where we stand with current military applications of battlefield AI. Please feel free to share them, as we need to raise more public awareness of what is happening. It’s time to encourage more robust public debate and conscientious examination of the spiritual, moral and ethical implications of emergent AI.  Before humanity chooses to race off the cliff with AI technology, shouldn’t we at least build some proper parachutes?

AI Firms, Research Labs, Movies, Links

Tags: earth post-biological reality, computational speed thresholds, AI, artificial intelligence, James Barrat, Susan Schneider, Kevin Warwick, Fumiya Lida, mechatronics, SETI Institute, quantum computing, MIT, Google AI program, NASA, Princeton University AI research program, super-intelligence, encoding moral principles, future computing issues, super-computing issues the future, super intelligence issues, alien extraterrestrial AI, artificial general intelligence open source technology, machine consciousness, encoding moral principles into early generation AI machines, UC Berkeley, DARPA AI research, time travel, the grandfather paradox, space-time continuum, military applications AI, AI brain enhancement, Google AI labs, Facebook AI labs, Amazon AI labs, IBM AI labs

[ Introductory AI ‘Dr. John Ross worst case scenario’ concept copyright Screenshots News Blog, 2016, All Rights Reserved in Perpetuity. 🙂 ]

NASA Caught Blurring Non-Natural Objects Discovered by Rover Curiosity on the Surface of Mars

It’s both heartbreaking and infuriating. Untold billions of our US tax dollars are up there, slowly and tediously mapping the surface of Mars via the ongoing surface crawl journey of Mars Rover Curiosity. But apparently too much curiosity just won’t do, and certain earth-shaking possibly “Mars-made” non-natural objects which the rover finds lying about on the surface of Mars, like so much  enigmatic ancient non-natural debris fields,  [ containing objects of all sorts of shapes and sizes, that clearly appear to be non-naturally formed, but instead appear to be manufactured objects ] – must be obliterated – via blurring them in image manipulation software, before the photos are released to the public. This confirms the long held notion about NASA – that their darkly comic acronym actually DOES stand for “Never A Straight Answer” – after all.

NASA has just been caught lying to us again { Is anyone surprised? } about what they are actually finding on the surface of Mars. They know what these objects are. Their people get to see them – unblurred. We don’t.  Why? What’s the big secret? At least 5,000 truth researchers already suspect from what we have uncovered since the 1970s that the US military-industrial complex has long operated a secret Mars colony. Google Andrew Basiagio and watch his many fascinating  lectures, to get started.

“Andrew D. Basiago brought his truth campaign about the US time travel and Mars cover-ups to Maui for the first time when he lectured at the Temple of Peace in Haiku, Hawaii on July 23-24, 2011. During his talks, Andy linked President Barack Obama to the US Mars visitation program, revealing that Obama was his classmate in a Mars training program held at The College of the Siskiyous in 1980, and vowed future revelations about the US time-space program.”

See http://www.project
Sacred Matrix

So the secret is already out NASA. Why not have the intestinal fortitude to “unblur” your blurred images and let us all see what else your people are finding on Mars? I dare you.


Tags: Mars mission coverup, blurred object photos Mars, NASA space exploration Mars mission photos doctored, blacklisted news Mars, blacklisted news our solar system, US tax dollars wasted on NASA


The Future of Robotics: Cause for Excitement or Ultimate Human Angst?

With recent advances in robotics comes the inevitable expanding angst of human robotics scientists, many of whom now fear that their technological super-creations will soon surpass their own intellectual abilities, eventually rendering the human intellect obsolete. I find these trumped up concerns to be rather silly even nonsensical, but I can see how science might be more than a little bit worried.

Serious injury and medical messes made during the deployment of robots in surgical procedures should serve as fair warning to the blithe fools among the many brilliant men and women who toil in our scientific community:  Never assign a machine to complete a task more efficiently performed by the trained and experienced hands of highly skilled human beings. Lesson learned, one would hope.

And then there is HAL: the once-brilliant-now-gone-beserk super computer who ran all the operations on the spaceship in the historic Stanley Kubrick film 2001 Space Odyssey.” We all know how that story ended. It was a 1960s era prophetic and cautionary tale: “Never let the master robot take over the spaceship.”

By contrast, in the film “Interstellar” the on-board robots prove themselves invaluable, saving lives and helping to salvage the space mission itself. In the movie “I Robot” state-of-the-art robots who do nearly everything for human society, run amuck and wreak havoc upon an entire city, nearly bringing about total collapse.. In The Matrix trilogy the robots have long since waged war on humans, won the battle, and taken over the world, now breeding humans via giant techno-warehouses as a disposable liquid food source, the most hideous imagining yet of a robotics based society gone terribly wrong. [ It’s never explained to the movie goer why the advanced machines who rule the Matrix must necessarily feast on a puree of liquid flesh and blood, but I suppose it made for an ‘uckier’ more gripping story. ] Thanks to advances in robotics we are presently re-imagining our greatest hopes and dreams as a species, while also exploring our darkest fears about the technology we are developing. Robotics is one of the most popular motion picture themes in the modern era, and rightfully so. We are now on the cusp of achieving great things, things we only dreamed of 60 years ago.

I would venture to say that at this point, late 2014, we have not yet learned how to teach these machines to become adroitly intuitive, truly insightful, or actually imaginative. [ Yet.]  I’m sure there will be those who will argue my point.

The solution to our future as a species who successfully deploys robotics lies with our own supreme choices and most important moral decision making in the next 30 years, choices we will soon make with those same mighty intellects which can endow machines with the ability to manufacture cars, build boats, and even pick the right stocks.  We can choose to develop smart military soldier robots who will go to war in 125 degree desert heat to ferret out ISIS overlords, risking no human lives in eliminating the threat. That’s definitely a use for robots I would put on my ‘to-do’ list asap. We have already invented clever little robots who can find people buried under tons of rubble or locate and defuse bombs under remote control, risking no human lives in the process. Excellent!

Should robots clean toilets in hotel rooms, change your motor oil,  check out shoppers, sell airline tickets and pick fresh orchard fruit?  Sure! But be sure to have job training programs already in place ready to re-assign those displaced human workers who will now need to learn new and needed skills.

Should robots write software ethics programs to develop behavioral protocols for their own kind? At this point, probably not. If we can’t teach them to perform surgery without causing human injury, they probably are not ready to author the encyclopedias on how they should function behaviorally either. It’s just common sense. And common sense seems to be the one ability that scientists cannot endow upon robots. It’s a uniquely human gift of wisdom and experience that machines don’t seem capable of gleaning just yet. We might ought to hope that they don’t. There needs to be a few jobs left in the robot ruled future that our own scientists can still do – on their own.

What we ought to be attending to first, before we design human-like robots which can cook a seven course meal, run for president, and rule the world, is our own real and lasting spiritual development in these next one hundred years. Our religious lives need to become LESS a cause for never-ending war, and MORE a source of everlasting inner peace. This is not only possible for the human species, but many millions of spiritual persons already enjoy this inner peace that men and women hunger for all over the world. And many have quietly achieved such gains without ever setting foot in a traditional church or mosque. Therefore, logic tells us that it is the individual quest for spiritual truth and attainment that is the actual source of personal aspiration, not the collective mass consciousness which squabbles endlessly over the relative virtues of one religious system over another.

If religions are perceived as the fundamental root of the problem, then let’s choose to go beyond traditional religions, and find common ground in our fundamental shared humanity. As a species we have yet to achieve real cross cultural brotherhood and sisterhood. We are still killing one another based on misled racial bias, misunderstanding, old genetic hatreds, and often just for sport.

We can achieve our species wide goal of attaining “Peace on Earth, Goodwill toward men” by meaningful personal and individual effort. Collective spiritual efforts come later, after this species has learned not to kill one another as a wrongly imagined  solution to mankind’s problems. It falls upon the individual man or woman, in private, within their own souls and conscience, to make the right personal and moral choices EVERY DAY that can help to lead the species toward peace and away from hell, death and endless war. No robot can ever do that, and no robot ever will.

If we believe that robots hold the solution to mankind’s problems, we are misled and traveling down the wrong road to the future. A machine is a tool. A robot is no different than a jackhammer, a screwdriver, a power saw, or a corvette. It’s a machine designed to perform some series of tasks. Attempt to endow it with any other qualities and you may be walking off the edge of the cliff, having never looked once at what is in front of you. Before we decide to dedicate our species to the development of robots, why not spend a few decades just becoming better human beings instead?

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International Copyright Secured in Perpetuity.

Advances in Japanese Robotics: Video Report 2014

Tags: Japan, robotics, 2014 robotics conference Japan, science engineering technology, artificial intelligence, lifelike realistic robots Japan