Technology Singularity is a term used to describe how technology will take over the world one day by learning to be more like people. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a term used to describe how technology shows naturally developing human processes. These processes include but are not limited to reasoning, self-correction, speech recognition, vision and much more.
What this means to ordinary people such as you and I is that life is getting easier at great consequence. As AI gets more advanced the technology becomes able to predetermine the outcome of your situation. As an example, look at new cell phones. When you pick them up now they automatically turn on, some brands of cell phones will even greet you by name and tell you your schedule or broadcast the weather. This AI believe it or not is making our lives so much better but at the same time making our lives completely worse. Using my Wife Courtenay and her cell phone as an example, when Courtenay wakes up on an average day the first thing she does is check the time on her phone. Simply punch a button and there it is displayed in bright bold letters. Harmless enough, right? Wrong!! What she has just done without knowing it is stimulated parts of her brain that enjoy seeing various types of light. Now if she was trying to get back to sleep she is going to find she has a harder time. Lately AI also has been targeting marketing groups using mediums such as social platforms. These social platforms include but are not limited to Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, etc. Algorithms look at various searches made by you to advertise on your screen items or services that you may find you need or want. You may also find this AI makes suggestions on your behalf. For example I have a friend whose Facebook suggested she join a BBW dating site (Big Beautiful Woman!), Facebook made an assumption based on search history, maybe profiling to come to this conclusion. Many companies succeed selling their products online this way. The other day I got an email from a contact on my phone, the email contained a link to weight loss and body shaping supplements. It’s no secret I have been researching weight loss supplements on my phone. Later when I went back to this email to find out more about the history of the email. I found out that the email address was bogus and the email was programmed to find a random contact on my phone and pretend it to be a friendly email. Now this specific spam email was designed by a person to sell something of an online store, but other emails can be programmed to steal items such as your banking information. How does this tie into our talk about AI? Well the code used must be smart enough to be able to penetrate your phone in your phones language and chose a contact to be disguised as. Another upside to new technology is the freedom of information. For instance, you are looking to make pumpkin pie and you know you have no idea how to bake. Well simply grab your phone or tablet and in a couple of key strokes (less if you use PREDICTIVE text) you can find a recipe to suit your needs. Getting information has never been easier, however is this what AI wants? As you use technology to develop new skills and hobbies have you ever thought of how hard it used to be like in the 90’s to learn something. You had to find someone who knew that skill or hobby and that person had to find a way to teach it to you. Also, you had to find a way to learn it. There were aspects of communication, socialization that got developed along with the hobby or skill. Now you can find a video on YouTube showing you how to do this newly acquired skill or hobby. Did you learn it?
Technology is also so addictive that people struggle to live without it. If you have kids, have you ever planned a holiday around whether there will be WIFI available? Technology has been developed to help someone profit at the customer’s expense. Advertisers spend billions of dollars ensuring that you have the latest technology and that it makes your life that much better. My Wife and I are victims of this, it’s so bad we have developed cell phone free weekends for my Wife. Even having cell phone free weekends tho isn’t enough Courtenay still can’t seem to break away from her phone. She even said and I quote “bathroom time is my time, I can use my phone”. Courtenay is not the only victim of technology, I myself cannot tear myself away from our TV at night. I cannot however take the TV to the bathroom with me. I might if it were not so big, Never the less technology is still a problem.
Another reason technology is damaging lives is because it makes people become more ignorant or lazy. What I mean by this is people sit around complaining that we cannot find things to do when really there are lots of things to do. Things as simple as going for a walk which would be beneficial to one’s health. Right now, I am sitting writing on my laptop writing about this subject because I am bored and my Wife is lying beside me googling something. We should be taking our dog Ginger to the park or something.
To others such as the working person, technology is a very dangerous thing and one of the biggest reasons for unemployment. Walk into any Walmart, superstore or grocery store and you will see automated tills. Tills designed for you to scan and bag your own items. This cluster of till is manned usually by one person. Whereas the number of people needed to man the tills in the past was one person per till. If for instance you have 12 automated tills at every store and there are only 12 store in Calgary you have just eliminated 132 jobs. On top of this because you have less staff on hand you also require less supervisors and management.
On a different aspect of automated tills, people absolutely love to hate this idea of self-scanning tills. While you are at whatever store you are at, watch the people standing in line. You will see that the people in line are complaining about how long an individual is taking to ring thru their items, and then when it’s their turn the individual whose checking out takes their time.
Just this evening my Wife and I were watching Star Wars and discussing how a droid army could be a reality more than a idea. In our day and age with the assistance of AI unmanned armies are not far from reality.
Elon Musk someone I believe to be super intelligent and one of my personal heroes has made huge advances in AI. Rumors convey a pair of robots who have taken our language and transmitted it between themselves in an original code of their own.
Many companies have also developed self-driving cars. Driving cars are capable of making driving decisions without the assistance of a person.
So there you have it a quick and dirty take on how technology is taking over the world.
Thanks for listening