Elon Musk is shitting himself over artificial intelligence. Like, shitting himself. So is Stephen Hawking. And Bill Gates.
Why exactly? Possibly because they watched Westworld, or Blade Runner, or Bicentennial Man, and it creeped them right out. But also probably because they’ve given it some rational thought, they’ve weighed it up and considered the many ways all this incessant meddling could end and decided that nope, mass manufacturing a populous of really smart robo-slaves is not actually a very good idea.
A proclivity for war, crime and extermination of the human race: these are just a few of the fun features that might be included in Siri’s future software updates.
But Professor Genevieve Bell, anthropologist and former vice-president of Intel, reckons we all just need to fucking chill for a second. In her fairly expert opinion, the secret to avoiding Skynet is by teaching our robots “Australian values.
“There’s an opportunity here to put [Australia] back in the middle of the conversation about what the future of technology looks like — frankly, I think artificial intelligence is just the first piece of that,” says Bell.
“There is a huge opportunity to think about how to do that in a way that manifests classic Australian values like fairness and equity and social justice.”
The problem, of course, is who decides what constitutes “classic Australian values” – particularly when we ourselves don’t really seem to know. How would a true blue R2-D2 feel about gay marriage, for example, or the current date of Australia Day? Will we get a Wall-E type operator who’s fair dinkum about environmental welfare, or a millennial Bender party-bot who watches the Bachelor in his trackpants and spends his weekly pay-check on bags of rack?
Only time will tell.
Source: ABC News
Feature Image: ABC
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