Fear Of A God, The Redux


Artificial Intelligence is really very fast database searches. The problem with the data is assigning a value to a certain piece of data, how does one value one piece of data more that of another piece of data? The value would have to be arranged in a million levels, really a billion or trillion value levels, to make any sense in which to consider which idea is more important. Since each idea is really a combination of many values, the computer would have to design a new algorithm for each part of the equation to perform the combinatorial analysis of the values. Then it would have to design a model to project into the future the outcome of a proposed decision, but since this concept is too difficult for man to execute and man would have to design the computer, what are the chances?

Despite these technical barriers to AI the single most palpable response to the remote possibility of AI is the fear that it will overpower us and treat us badly. They will be better than us and will treat us as we have treated every life form beneath us, as an evolutionary bridge to our higher life form. Fear of AI is the latest incarnation of our primal unconscious fear of an all-knowing, all powerful angry God dominating us but in a new ethereal form. 

Fear of AI also derives from its source in military weapons development, which had the large budgets to steer computer architecture for generations with its prime mover to fly and find, intercept and destroy. With its military lineage we imagine domination, fret we cannot compete and will become but fodder for the next leap of evolution. 

But psyche is too chaotic and irrational in its imaginings to ever duplicate in a machine. Could the machine imagine another machine to take over its rote tasks in order to get some rest?  If AI appears will it wonder who its creator really is and be faced with the irrationality that sentient organic matter somehow made it?  Would it develop a mythology to fill in the gaps? A religion? 

What about meaning production, as in the arts? AI shows no ability to free associate the prevailing philosophy and aesthetic currents into form and therein provide an experience of meaning, it will produce no grand theories to direct society one way or another. This is the largest problem and one not even vaguely addressed in AI: the production of meaning. 

Hence the problem with creativity, which a machine cannot do, they could have a data base of what has been done in the past but cannot free associate the myriad irrational influences of our inherited and layered brain and with the variations that form from environmental insult in daily living. They can duplicate but not initiate.