Artificial Intelligence vs. Human Thinking
New technologies and more specifically Artificial Intelligence (AI) are dramatically changing the behavior of our societies, and more considerable changes are to come sooner than we think. The speed of the advancements in AI and tech is increasing exponentially and this trend is expected to continue in the upcoming years. In fact, the devices to which we are used to at present will very soon be outdated and replaced by new ones, and somehow they will end up being part of our lives. But, are new technologies and AI something that will bring progress to humankind or are there also other readings?
There is no doubt that new technologies have contributed to making an easier day-to-day life for people. Nowadays, it is easy to have access to any kind of information, send instant messages to our contacts, make video calls and communicate with friends and beloved ones regardless of their location. Latest advancements have also contributed to better productivity and efficiency of companies, allowed the union and organization of people, helped the dissemination of ideas and have been a key to improvements in health. It is clear that nowadays technology plays an important role in our societies. However, people are increasingly starting to question whether certain AI and tech advancements represent a real development of our societies or if they can also mean a threat to our privacy and freedom?.
Among the potential problems directly related to technology, is the lack of anonymity in the public sphere due to the systematic tracking of individuals across their electronic devices and the data exploitation through the share of personal information to third-party platforms, networks and companies. With regard to AI, there have been some intriguing advancements that are not that well-known in the public arena and accessing information about them is not that easy. Some of them are increasingly reaching the public through news, films and series, and are the anteroom of what is to come. In the last few years, there has been a bigger cover of topics such as robotics, microchips and nanotechnology. However, few people are questioning about the actual consequences that these ‘advancements’ could have in their lives.
To this effect, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is one of the leading companies in what refers to AI. It develops precision weapons, stealth technology and leads the latest advances in robotics in a global scale, and is behind the creation of many gadgets, devices and weapons that are therefore sold in the markets or used in wars. DARPA is one of the most powerful AI companies and has a huge influence in the global trend. Plus it has openly admitted to be a promoter of Transhumanism:
Transhumanism are class of philosophies of life that seek the continuation and acceleration of the evolution of intelligent life beyond its currently human form and human limitations by means of science and technology, guided by life-promoting principles and values – Max More, 1990.
Everything appears to indicate that by the year 2030 technology will start to be put inside the body in the form of nanotechnology and nanobots in a wide scale, and DARPA is supposed to be at the forefront of this agenda. This technology would connect the human mind to the technological sub-reality, better known as ‘cloud.’ Therefore, humans would be thinking from the cloud, which would then gradually do more of human thinking, with the risk of it making it its entirety. This would mean that the human conscious mind would submit to the cloud (AI), or in other words, AI would become the human mind. The most surprising fact is that the most important AI companies are starting to speak openly about it; they present it as a chance for us to become ‘superhumans.’ Once connected to the cloud we would be able to do and understand things that the human mind cannot do. However, it would represent the end of humanity as we know it, as there would not be a place for free thought. Thus, ideas would be coming from the ‘cloud’ to the human mind, which would then think that it is having a genuine thought. But far from that, decisions won’t be taken from the human mind itself, but extracted from the ‘cloud.’ In fact, what we are seeing is a gradually increasing dependency of technology in the form of ‘holdables,’ our nowadays phones and tablets. The next step to come would be technology that we can wear such as smart watches, Google glasses, etc. Eventually, technology would be put inside the body and would connect us to the cloud, and I would suggest, taking over human thinking.
Another matter of concern is the privacy and the free flow of information. In fact, companies like Google have the potential to control and are actually controlling the information that appears more predominantly on the searching lists, a practice that is known as shadow banning. This means that there is less space for alternative narratives and available information is being gradually reduced to the mainstream vision. Subsequently, news and information that counters the official narrative is being systematically put aside. Thus, the free flow of information is literally becoming a chimera.
But what is even more surprising is that DARPA and Google are closely related. Both have very similar purposes, as it turns out that Google is not only a search engine – it actually dominates the search engines arena- but it is also one of the prime drivers of the transhumanist agenda. Proof of this is that Regina Dugan – former president of DARPA- has made what is seemed to be a strange career move from its company to become an executive of Google, where she keeps developing AI projects. In the same line, numerous experiments backed by these big firms such as implanted microchips with which we can make payments or open doors and the famous Chinese credit system that seeks to track the life of every single citizen are becoming a reality.
So what to do? Part of the solution goes through subjecting AI companies to requirements of protecting, promoting and respecting human rights, as well as to adapt laws in order to address the new possible threats. However, this is not very likely to happen as these big companies are extremely powerful and in the practice are not subjected to the law in so many levels. Therefore, the first step to take is to be informed, make our own research, develop a critical thinking and make other people aware about these issues. Technology and AI are not negative nor harmful themselves, but the key is in how and with what purposes it is used. But if the future of humanity is doomed to surrender to AI something is going wrong and it is in our hands to think before it is too late.