Technology 4 min read

Will Machines Become Smarter Than Man?

Artist rendering of an abstract brain-computer interface | Tex Vector |

Artist rendering of an abstract brain-computer interface | Tex Vector |

Ray Kurzweil, a futurist, claims that AI will become billions of times smarter than humans. In a classic case of “if you can’t beat them, join them,” Ray says humans will have to merge with AI to survive.

Digital Information World published an infographic that outlines the trends in AI and machine learning to be expected in 2018. The research comes from CB Insights, Callaghan Innovation, PwCDigital, Forrester, and Gartner.

Businesses, particularly in the healthcare, finance, commerce, and agriculture industries, are increasingly investing in AI and machine learning solutions.

Read More: Know the Difference Between AI, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning

In 2017, 51% of companies said they would incorporate AI and machine learning into their business processes. For 2018, the percentage of companies pledging to use some form of AI jumped to 70% of those surveyed.

Contrary to what we might think, by 2020, massive deployment of AI and ML is expected to create about 2.3 million jobs against 1.8 million that will be displaced by automation.

AI is gaining ground in the mainstream business world after starting as somewhat of a mystery. Since artificial intelligence has evolved into usefully applied machine learning algorithms and deep learning neural networks, the frightful image of Skynet has given way to something more . . . practical.

For example, AI was recently used to spot signs of future cardiac disease just from retinal scans. While a human could never do this alone, this machine is still far less intelligent in the grand scheme of things. AI exists for one specific purpose, and at this point, it’s hard to imagine them finding sentience from fulfilling data structure assignments.

Read More: Understanding Data Structure’s Graph Traversal and Depth First Search Algorithm

Many experts agree that AI has the potential to one day outsmart humanity. More controversial is what the repercussions will be from humanity’s synthesis with machine intelligence. Elon Musk, for example, warns that the desire to create sophisticated AI could destroy us if misused. Mark Zuckerberg thinks that’s flawed logic.

Super intelligent robots pose an existential threat to humanity far riskier than displacing jobs. According to other experts, we have to merge with machines to keep up with them and ensure our survival.

The age of Supersmart Machines is Upon us

Futurist, transhumanism theorist and inventor Kurzweil believes that we should expect ultra-intelligent machines within our lifetime.

Back in 2005, Kurzweil predicted that the technological singularity, a point after which machines would be smarter than humans, would arrive in 2045.

He persists in his predictions. Kurzweil puts 2029 as the date by which machines will gain human-level intelligence and would be able to pass the Turing test.

By 2045, humans will be able to increase their intelligence billions of times by merging with AI.

You can choose not to take Kurzweil’s word for it, but Google’s director of engineering has a proven track record of accurate predictions.

Since the 1990s, Kurzweil made 147 predictions with 86% success rate.

For instance, Kurzweil predicted in 1990 that a computer would beat a human chess champion by 1998. Well, IBM’s Deep Blue did it in 1997 when it defeated chess master Garry Kasparov.

Now Ian Pearson, from Futurizon, another futurologist, and inventor, shares Kurzweil’s prediction, saying that AI will be billions of times smarter than biological intelligence.

Merge With Machines or go Extinct!

Speaking at a CNBC panel – during the 2018 World Government Summit, Pearson also said that we need to lay bridges between the human brain and AI systems for us to survive.

“The fact is that AI can go further than humans, it could be billions of times smarter than humans at this point,” Pearson told CNBC. “So we really do need to make sure that we have some means of keeping up. The way to protect against that is to link that AI to your brain, so you have the same IQ as the computer.”

Pearson suggested that humans shouldn’t build machines with superhuman intelligence until they figure out how to link them to the human brain as a safety precaution.

In that, Pearson is also echoing Elon Musk’s thoughts. It should be remembered that Musk once warned people about AI rendering humans “irrelevant” in the future.

Musk, in addition to his systematic warnings against potential AI deviance and calls for regulation, founded last year the startup Neuralink, which aims to create brain-machine interfaces.

Read More: The Best Artificial Intelligence Books You Need To Read Today

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Zayan Guedim

Trilingual poet, investigative journalist, and novelist. Zed loves tackling the big existential questions and all-things quantum.

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