I won’t claim that we’re not completely innocent as contributors to this particular blog, but it’s rather disturbing how in this day and age it appears as if trends and buzzes are what matter over everything else. We’ll only claim to be partially guilty of jumping on that bandwagon here at B-Logging since we always try to deliver value to the reader as we try to do so in a manner which takes advantage of the buzzing trends.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) comes into focus as a topic of discussion, not because it’s a hot and trending topic right now, but because I feel the need for it to be deconstructed from the point of view of a computer scientist who is visibly perturbed by just how loosely the term is used. I did indeed collaborate with a computer scientist who was happy to weigh in on the topic and clear up the record once and for all as to what AI actually is.
NOT the rise of the machines
I don’t think I need to mention them by name, however there are a couple of well-known great minds of the tech game who’ve been going at it by way of what they believe are the dangers (or lack thereof) of the development of artificial intelligence. It has become a full-on war on platforms such as Twitter, with the team over at the Twitter head office presumably loving every single moment of it.
Anyway, one corner seems to be referring to AI in a technically incorrect manner, suggesting that it’s something akin to the rise of the machines often depicted in movies. That’s not what AI is – AI is NOT human-like intelligence suddenly breathed into a machine, thereby rendering that independently intelligent machine a threat to humans because of the superior computing power it brings to this human-level intelligence. AI is not a scenario where robots will render us useless to the point that they keep us as pets.
What artificial intelligence IS
The name gives it away really, explaining it for what it really is. Artificial intelligence is intelligence that is artificial, in other words synthesized intelligence. If you like you can refer to it as emulated intelligence, achieved through the use of programmatically driven events that resemble something an intelligent being would do. That’s the paraphrased definition according to the subject matter of the field of computer science, which has been given a good and proper twist by the likes of Hollywood.
Unfortunately this has created a bit of undue panic with some very smart people appearing to completely believe that the rise of the machines is coming as a result of the unmonitored development of AI.
Think of it this way – a robot built to complete a task an intelligent being would aim to achieve is the technical definition of what artificial intelligence is in action, which is a code-driven machine programmed to emulate an intelligent function. Does that make that robot an intelligent being whose “brain” is dangerously housed in a body that is immune to the effects of the biological processes humans are susceptible to?