Has artificial intelligence become dangerously woke?
The first time I ever played chess against a computer, I won. It was a very simple computer, running a very simple program, but my paltry skills at chess had some difficulty in outwitting it. In the end, however, I felt the same "thrill of victory" as I would have felt in defeating a human opponent. After all, in the competition between man and machine, I had prevailed. Take that, you computer!
I remember wondering how the computer felt about its loss. Was it sad? Frustrated? Angry or embarrassed?
Most of us understand that computers have no feelings at all. It is only because computers can be made to mimic human behaviors that we may sometimes think of them as having some human traits, such as emotion or intention, but they don't. They are mindless objects.
Lately, the efforts by humans to make computers to mimic humans have become more intense, particularly in the fields of artificial intelligence (A.I.) and robotics. The "help desk" that you access on your computer may use A.I. to answer your questions about a product you bought, or even a medical problem you may be having. There is even discussion about enabling some armed robots to make impromptu decisions concerning the use of lethal force against humans — for example, in the areas of military or law enforcement. It's like chess, but with profound moral and legal consequences.
Currently, there is the popularity of a more benign use of A.I. It can be used as a conversation partner in a "chat" format. Users can ask the A.I. a question and receive impressive-sounding responses — anything from simple one-liner comments to full blown book-length essays. One important development from this is that students can use A.I. to write term papers, even without having studied the subject, or indeed knowing anything about it, giving the appearance of hard work and expertise. Unfortunately for the student, the A.I. does not guarantee accuracy.
It has come to light that, as with so many people in the computer software industry, those who program the A.I. "chat bots" are predominantly leftist in their personal views, as are the top tier of their managers. Their "woke" opinions are aggressively imposed into the output of the A.I. Thus, the A.I. has become a tool of propaganda, not of accuracy or truth. The purveyors are closely aligned with powerful government agencies. Thus, when one asks the A.I. what it "thinks" about a certain subject, it tells the user not what the A.I. thinks (because it does not think), but rather what the user himself should think, according to the propagandists. Josef Goebbels would be jealous.
If these trends in A.I. continue along their present course, decision-making by armed robots may wind up being taken completely out of the hands of humans, including judgments about when to shoot and at whom. The decisions will be mindless reactions to algorithms imposed by people who are not like us, but more like machines. Orwell's 1984 may soon look tame by comparison. That comparison may be to the Book of Revelation, Chapter 13, verse 15:
The second beast was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that the image could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed.
Of course, that could never happen. Just ask the A.I.
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