Stephen Hawking has warned that technology needs to be controlled in order to prevent it from destroying the human race. The world-renowned physicist, who has spoken out about the dangers of artificial intelligence in the past, believes we need to establish a way of identifying threats quickly, before they have a chance to escalate. "Since civilisation began, aggression has been useful inasmuch as it has definite survival advantages," he told The Times. "It is hard-wired into our genes by Darwinian evolution. Now, however, technology has advanced at such a pace that this aggression may destroy us all by nuclear or biological war.
This past spring, Google began feeding its natural language algorithm thousands of romance novels in an effort to humanize its "conversational tone." The move did so much to fire the collective comic imagination that the ensuing hilarity muffled any serious commentary on its symbolic importance. The jokes, as they say, practically wrote themselves. But, after several decades devoted to task-specific "smart" technologies (GPS, search engine optimization, data mining), Google's decision points to a recovered interest among the titans of technology in a fully anthropic "general" intelligence, the kind dramatized in recent films such as Her (2013) and Ex Machina (2015). Amusing though it may be, the appeal to romance novels suggests that Silicon Valley is daring to dream big once again.
Could a robot designed as a sexual companion ever feel something like love for me? And could I, as a human with emotional intelligence, ever feel love for it? These questions challenge our definition of love, but they also challenge our understanding of both human emotion and artificial intelligence. Will intimate relationships between humans and robots ever get beyond just sex? This is a topic up for debate at the 12th Human Choice and Computers Conference in Manchester, UK, where academics and researchers are gathering this week to discuss humanity's relationship--sexual, romantic, or otherwise--with our AI counterparts.
It's mainstream and it's coming faster than anyone thought possible. Global developments in robotics and artificial intelligence will disrupt most industries, including the PR and creative industry. Speaking at the Holmes Report's PRovokes 2016 summit in Miami, Lipson shared an action packed keynote, with plenty of thought provoking examples to remind us we now live in harmony with robots, which are getting smarter by the day as a result of artificial intelligence (AI). "The industry is moving so fast it's surprising everyone in the field, where we've seen complete lines of research made obsolete," said Lipson. "For most of us, our view of robots was what see saw portrayed in Hollywood movies – robots were happy, emotional, cunning, smart and sophisticated.
Amazon will now fly things to people's houses to deliver them. The company has completed the first ever Prime Air delivery, dropping an order off at someone's house just 13 minutes after they'd ordered it. For now, the drone deliveries are in a private – and largely mysterious – testing process. It is trying a range of different drones, it has said, flying them around different environments in the UK as part of its secretive tests. But eventually the company intends to roll out drone deliveries to everyone across the world.