Mankind's Fear of Artificial Intelligence

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Mankind's Fear of Artificial Intelligence

Fear is created not by the world around us, but in the mind, by what we think is going to happen. Why is it that in almost all of the movies starring cyborgs, the cyborgs are either inherently evil or the cause of trouble? We human beings seem to have a problem with the idea of a person enhanced with technology, or a robot enhanced with Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Norbert Wiener, a mathematician, coined the term cybernetics . Although many of his idea's are still used today, Wiener himself began to second guess the value of his work. He wrote that while competition from machines during the first industrial revolution devalued the human arm, the modern industrial revolution "is similarily bound to devalue the human brain"2. One reason we so fear cyborg's is that, being superior to us in some way, they will replace us. This feeling is brought to light in "The Terminator", as well as the Japanese Anime "Armitage III: Polymatrix". In "The Terminator" and its sequel, machines have all but obliterated humanity, as revenge for the humans making them subserviant. In "Armitage", the cyborgs are reffered to as Seconds. They have no emotion, and are perfect for menial labor. Humans have a grudge against them, seeing as businesses employ the Seconds for a vast multitude of tasks, leaving the job market barren.

"Once the first powerful machine, with an intelligence similar to that of a human, is switched on, we will most likely not get the opportunity to switch it back off again. " Although Asimov provided us with 'rules' for robots, this quote embodies the unspoken fear of AI. Once we create a being that cannot be defined as wholly biological or mechanical, how will we determine ...

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...ited by Christpher Morris. Copyright © 1992 Academic Press.

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