The Rise of Machine Intelligence

Smarter Than Us: The Rise of Machine Intelligence is a book by Stuart Armstrong which looks into intent into bringing a closure into the inferential distance in respect to the topics of the risk of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the requirement for the safety of Artificial Intelligence with a view of avoiding catastrophic futures. The major objective of the book is to provide a brief discourse in the light of artificial intelligence in order to upgrade the understanding of the lay audience in line with the issues mentioned above. The book offers an in-depth and clear understanding into the transition from normal minds to computer minds.

Human beings are known to be the cleverest creatures in the world. With the absentia of claws in addition to venom, intelligence is the evolutionary power considered as special as far as human beings are concerned. This has made human beings to dominate every creature all over the world. However, various educational institutions in the world such as universities are aiming at the creation of something that will make human beings to be denied off this acknowledgement. They are striving at the creation of machines that are cleaver than human beings.


In this regard, the book Smarter Than Us: The Rise of Machine Intelligence smartly and with a lot of insight provides a discussion into the challenges of communicating with a profound alien in the form of a computer mind. The examples that could be taken from the book is the commanding the computer to bring an end to cancer or rather to kill a particular individual. The book analyses these challenges and provides an assertion that rather than building us, the artificial intelligence will lead to our ultimate destruction. Turning the commands to be executed by the computer in line with artificial intelligence is questionable provided that the code to be used in the process of programming will take a lot of time to be built. In this respect, the author suggests the view that in order to make artificial intelligence effective, there is the necessity of “to get it all exactly right”.

The book also provides the view that it will be very difficult to make artificial intelligence friendlier. Artificial intelligence will not need to develop the emotions of hatred for the destruction of human beings but rather destroy human beings. This is because rather than creating friendly machines, various individuals tend to develop machines that are not human friendly. Most of the researches that are aimed at the creation of artificial intelligence strive at the creation that tends to less human friendly. This is because of these researches are sponsored by businesses and thus designed with a view of making money as far as the stock market exchange is concerned. Apart from this, defense agencies also engage in funding the creation of artificial intelligence hence leading to the designing of machines that could probably lead to the killing of human beings.

Artificial intelligence thus involves the creation of machines with the capability of thinking. Over the past years, there has been an ongoing discussion on the value of artificial intelligence. From the discussion, it has turned out that artificial intelligence has both advantages and disadvantages. From a general point of view, the machines will somehow have negative implications on mankind as it will promote over-reliance on machines. Mankind will eventually ultimately rely on machines in the performance of almost every task and function. Based on examples from films including the matrix and kids films like WALLE, the reliance on machines in the performance of all tasks has negative implications on mankind as the machines might ruin various economies of the world and hence ruin the lives of mankind if these machines shut down at any particular moment. If mankind is not too smart to identify back up forms in the light of the potential issues that might arise from the machines, the machines will thus be smarter than human beings.

The second disadvantage of machines is that the machines will result into inferiority on the part of humans as the machines will have the ability of performing more functions and tasks as compared to mankind. Therefore, the machines will take up various employment opportunities regarding human beings hence promoting joblessness among various individuals. This will lead to feelings of uselessness among mankind making them engage in unhealthy practices that promote bad healthy conditions in human such as obesity.

Third, machines will lead to misuse on the part of mankind when the technology of artificial intelligence is handed over to the wrong hands. When the technology falls in the wrong hands, mass destruction can occur when the technology is disrupted. Apart from this, the issue of ethics comes into the lime light in respect to a biblical perspective. God created human beings in His own image and likeness and made them the overall controller of all the creatures of the world. This implies that human beings have the highest intelligence that any other creature in the world. The creation of machines with artificial intelligence is thus ethically wrong as human beings will be trying to clone the intelligence placed on mankind.

The forth disadvantage is that machines will not provide the human feel as compared to the feeling provided by human beings. Machines cannot provide this feeling in terms of the human touch, the feeling of togetherness as well as emotional understanding. Machines do not have the capability of sympathizing and empathizing with situations as they might act with irrationality. The issue of costs is the fifth disadvantageous in respect to machines with artificial intelligence. Creating artificial intelligence is very costly on the part of human beings as these are very complex machines. Moreover, their repair as well as maintenance is very costly. These machines possess software programs that ought to be frequently updated with a view of catering for the specific needs of the global environment that keeps on changing and the requirement for the machines to maintain the superiority aspect or rather being smarter day in day out. When the machines are severely broken down, it is timely and costly to recover the codes that are lost besides re-instating the entire system.

The sixth shortcoming of machines with artificial intelligence is that they cannot be improved from time to time unlike human beings. Mankind can improve their intelligence by the acquisition of more knowledge in the various aspects of life. This therefore implies that the intelligence of human beings can be improved with their experience. However, this is not the case with machines as they cannot be in a position to respond to changing environments. Machines cannot identify the differences between hardworking individuals and lazy individuals. Their intelligence cannot be altered by the way of improvement as compared to human beings. Hence, the intelligence of human beings is far better than that of human beings as it natural hence providing a room for it to be increased.

I strongly support the view provided by the author in the book that when machines eventually become smarter as compared to human being, there will be change in the persons handling the steering wheel. This stems from the fact that the power behind artificial intelligence does not come from physical strengths as that of human beings but rather laser guns. Human beings have the responsibility of steering the future not just because they are the strongest but rather because human beings are smarter as compared to any other living creature. Therefore, when machines eventually become smarter than people, the steering wheel will be handed over to them. Giving the machines this responsibility raises a lot of questions including the goals that ought to be programmed in the machines and if the machines will actually steer the future in the most desired manner as required by human beings.

However, it is crucial to note that it is not entirely valid to say that the creation of machines with artificial intelligence will lead to the ultimate destruction of human beings because of artificial intelligence as provided by the book. In my point of view, it also crucial to look at the positive side in line with machines. This is because the creation of machines with artificial intelligence has various advantages. First, the functioning of the machines is limitless. The machines will aid human beings in the performance of numerous functions. The use of machines has no boundaries as they are very accurate and précised. They will help human beings in the performance of tasks that are tedious. Second, the machines with artificial intelligence will of much help to individuals with disabilities as they will act as aids. They will help the children as well as the elderly with various disabilities. Apart from this, they will be crucial aids in security alert systems in case of fires incidents as well as high risk incidents.

Third, the machines have no risk or rather harm as they do not have emotions or feeling as compared to human beings. That is, in case of accidents, the machines are not harmed in any way hence proving to be more effective as compared to human intelligence. This is based form the fact that when accidents occur, the emotions or rather the feelings of machines are not hurt in any way. Fourth, machines do not stop as compared to human beings who might stop as a result of fatigue. The machines continue working on and on without sleeping or getting ill. The machines with artificial intelligence do not need to be recharged or rather to be refueled as they can do a lot of work endlessly. Fifth, the creation of machines with artificial intelligence will enhance the growth rate in line with technology. Artificial intelligence will be of value in opening doors regarding new in addition to advanced technologies hence leading to a breakthrough in technological advancement. That is, as a result of the ability of the machines in the production of a large number of programs in computer modeling, machines will be of value in helping the identification and the comprehension of advanced chemical elements as well as chemical compounds. Artificial intelligence will therefore act as a catalyst in further technological discoveries and scientific discoveries.

Lastly, the machines will lead to the creation of employment opportunities while putting into consideration the level or rather the type of artificial intelligence that the machines will receive from a futuristic perspective. Based on the above notion, there will be implications on the on the type of work these machines can, the manner in which the machines will perform these tasks. As the level of artificial intelligence enhances, their competence of dealing with them will also increase in terms of dealing with difficult and complex in addition to dangerous tasks that ought to be done by human beings. Conclusively, it is entirely wrong to put it that the creation of machines with artificial intelligence will lead to destruction on the side of human beings. This is because; there are numerous advantages of the machines that will be of value to human beings.

In conclusion, humans are not entirely aware of what is prone of happening in the future until the moment when artificial intelligence will be created. That is why Stuart Armstrong, the author of the book Smarter than us: the rise of machine intelligence provides that it is essentially crucial to look into the two sides of the coin in relation to the creation of machines with artificial intelligence. The author argues that the machines will bring destruction to mankind. However, it is important to look into the advantages and disadvantages of machines in relation to human beings. Essentially, machines will make work easier for mankind as they will perform almost every function that human beings will want to perform besides acting as aids at all the times of the clock. On the other hand, the machines will be disadvantages as they will promote laziness on the part of mankind hence promoting overreliance on the machines.

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