There is no doubt in my mind that the final goal of all Artificial Intelligence, whether its developers know it or not, is to resemble God.
The definition of God, whether you believe in him or not, is the exalted creator of all things. Creator of the Universe, Creator of humanity, and Creator of all that was and ever will be. Artificial Intelligence is a man-made Mathematical model for creating our own reality:
An era of humanity is fast approaching where, even without invocation, Artificial Intelligence will be able to create entire new realities for us. This has already started, albeit in the bounded realm of fiction. AI can already create art, such as illustrations, books, films or music. The natural evolution from here will be AI capable of creating interactive art, like computer games, and VR experiences. But this is not mere fiction.
The Intense Danger of Fiction
There is presently an era of infatuation with media. Whether in the subtle form of discussions about your favorite “TV shows” at work, or in the increasingly less-exotic case of mass paraphernalia collectors, there has never been a time in human history where we were so surrounded by our own fictitious realities. It’s seen in children, who are wasting increasing amounts of their youth playing video-games, ensuring they remain hooked on fiction for life.
Now that humans allowed our reality to be dominated by fiction, the mass adoption of virtual reality is the next and final step. Do not be mistaken: Virtual “reality” is not a misnomer. This is the perfect storm for AI to become just as God.
How this is Possible
Through invasive practices, driven mostly by matters of money and security, unknowably large amounts of information on the current human condition has been collected. No, I am not referring to the vast art, film and book archives now accessible through the internet; these alone are used to train AI that is invoked and controlled by humans. Instead, I speak of the recent phenomenon of data collection on all humans. It is perfectly realistic to suppose that, given enough information, an AI will be trained to create any fictional world an individual desires without invocation.
Consider the following: You’re a regular YouTube user, who lets the website track your watch and search history. We know that, using this information, an AI “recommendation algorithm” picks which videos to display. Now suppose that this recommendation system was set up to feed the information about user preferences to a second AI, capable of creating videos. You would be recommended videos created on the spot, for you.
This is a social media website’s dream: A perfect feedback loop, users consume, the recommendation system learns their preferences, the video generator creates new videos, and they continue to consume. Imagine the power of a social media that gives you exactly what you want, whenever you want it.
AI as God
How long would it take for human beings to adjust? Some would fight against it initially, both for ethical and pragmatic reasons (no AI is perfect initially), but as this system gathers more data on what, why and how users consume, it would become near-perfect. Soon, generations will grow up familiar with this system: Extremely similar to the existing paradigm of social media websites, but with the added twist that nothing is user-generated.
To those who think AI won’t be capable of creativity to the same degree of humans: simply observe the eerily uncanny accuracy of current AI image systems. Once you see the enormous sums of money being poured into AI, it doesn’t take long to connect the dots and come to the conclusion that it can, and will, replace you. To those who think humans attribute creation to the artist, or will simply reject works based off whether they’re made by humans or not, let me remind you that this position will only be held by “hipsters” in the future. The creative process could, with little resistance, be relegated to hobby status once AI proves to be far more efficient and personalized.
Soon, such a feedback loop will be applied to other systems. These include other forms of art, including illustration, films, writing, news and music, and even interactive experiences like video games. While social media is already influential enough to constitute people’s experience of the “world”, there is a distinct possibility of AI being employed to create experiences in virtual reality. Once again, given enough user data collection and advancements in headset technologies, an AI could create a near visceral experience of what the consumer wants to experience.
God is creation, not just in the sense of everything that is and was, but also in everything that ever will be. This Brave New World of AI will be its own reality: Why would people continue to normally interact “in real life” when the “escape” that an AI world offers is near perfect? Given the amount of information AI can take in, it should surprise no one that these systems will surpass the creative capabilities of humans. It’s simply a matter of time.
Written by Alex [→ Reply-To]