After being exposed to a litany of Covid tests, humanity must batten down the hatches and prepare for the legacy of mathematical genius and father of the modern computer Alan Turning.
The iconic innovator predicted a day when the distinction between interacting with a machine and a human would be so miniscule that the living being would be forced to administer a “Turing Test” to determine if the shapely blonde on the digital dating platform was either a viable mate or a Betty bot diverting personal data to the coffers of information in Lagos, Nigeria. Extending past the coarse dynamics of online romance, AI’s are now publishing news articles as major media syndicates attempt to slash costs, and subsequently match readers with the odd bedfellow of Arthur C. Clarke’s HAL distributing the content between committing evil acts aimed the ultimate demise of homo sapiens.
While this tactic is nothing new, recently information portal CNET was lambasted for generating automated and aggregate articles factually inaccurate to the level of amateur fake news purveyors flooding the electronic dream world with conjured falsehoods and urban myths from their mother’s basement. The company deployed an experimental campaign which ended up shorting out a proverbial transistor or two.
According to a company spokesperson, 77 automated articles were generated, and 41 required editing to be sufficiently corrected for distribution. Critics were first alerted to the corporation’s use of bots after an erroneous story ran focused on the concept of accruing interest in finance, and the math was butchered. The offending smart robot programmed to write, made a $10 thousand mistake in misleading readers as to the benefits of long-term investments. If anything, the blunder indicates that AI is still at an infantile level of development, and entrusting software to make complex decisions is eons away. Innovators surrounding self-driving technology and medical applications should take note, as computers tasked with putting words together cannot write their way out of a paper bag at this point in time.
Other than the ramifications on the near future of creativity and original thought, the prevalence of bots making editorial decisions represents a viable threat to the mental growth of the younger generations. As attention spans have been groomed to be absent from critical thinking skills and are now measured in less than :15-seconds, the future of humanity is unstable at least from an academic sense. As thoughts become compressed into the constraints of a character limit, language is altered to unrecognizable dialects as the evolution of innovation is stifled. AI’s replacing flesh and blood only illustrates this plight, and in 30 years, conversations will be unrecognizable to those still around from the stone ages of the Dewey Decimal System. While the average IQ dwindles, complex issues and scenarios are less-likely to be handled effectively and with a reliable level of competence, as convenience has replaced common sense.