Friday, May 16, 2014

On Technological Singularity

Watched the movie 'Her' yesterday about a guy who fell in love with his operating system. While the premise of the movie may look strange, this indie movie is not classified as sci-fi and explores the facets of human relationships instead.

Without giving the plot away, the movie has made me rethink the concept of Singularity. (wiki)

My views back in the 80s when I was in school was that we would never be able to create intelligence that surpassed our own. How can a flawed being like us be able to create something flawless or better than ourselves.

Now I am not too sure. The concept of artificial intelligence back then was something that mirrored our own. With technology moving towards networking, parallel processing, server farms, etc. in the past 30+ years, the concept of machine intelligence has also changed.

Remove the extreme Hollywood's version of machine intelligence like Skynet, Transcendence and other Domesday scenarios, there is just no way to imagine the singularity when the day comes. How can one even imagine a higher intelligence from a position of lower intelligence?

We already have all human knowledge (Google), interactions (Facebook and other social media) all in the place we called the cloud. Technological singularity naturally will be also be spawn in the cloud. All it takes now is a spark or a rib (religious metaphor) when the time comes. My prediction is within 50 years. What comes after that is anyone's guess.

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