To your list of TV and movie AI plots, I'd add the novel, "Colossus." Now, it's a typical story of a machine accumulating knowledge to the point that it decides to rule mankind. When it was published in 1966, though, it was a fairly new concept. And very scary. Still is.


Add to that the idea of the Singularity, and we're getting into really frightening territory.


I, for one, find AI advances very concerning.

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May 30Liked by Bill Astore

An interesting last word in the latest TomDispatch, “Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”


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On artificial Intelligence, Patrick Lawrence delved into the Artificial Intelligence of the Powers behind the Throne in denial of the Natural Intelligence showing itself to this World.

He uses a speech by Fiona Hill, once a Washington Insider, now an outsider exposing glimmers of Truth and Reality independent of the Insiders she was once beholden to.

'Deaf, but Not Blind on US Decline'

In Fiona Hill’s recent speech it’s possible to detect the very faint signals of Washington’s policy elite responding to the immense global power shift that is underway.

Blind, deaf, stupid, in gutless denial, this last a subset of stupid: Each of these explanations has its temptations as we assess the cognitive capacities of the elites who sequester themselves inside the Washington Beltway.

But it has been awfully hard to settle with certainty on the cause of our policy people’s apparent inability or refusal to acknowledge that world history has entered a period of epochal change.

At last an answer to this perplexing question, or a useful suggestion of one. Blind or stupid are not the explanations we are looking for. Deafness and denial are.........................................


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May 30·edited May 30

As computers and robots increasingly replace workers in retail, manufacturing and other sectors of the economy more and more people are going to lose their jobs and not be able to find another one. Adopting a Universal basic income (UBI) government program in which every adult citizen receives $12,000 per annum is going to become necessary for people to survive.

UBI would alleviate poverty and homelessness and replace all other needs-based welfare programs that require greater bureaucratic overhead.

Support for a government-supplied income stream has been endorsed by prominent economists on the left and the right. Among them is the late conservative economist Milton Friedman, who in 1962’s “Capitalism and Freedom”, argued that a UBI—would help overcome a mindset where citizens aren’t inclined to make sacrifices if they don’t believe others will follow suit. “We might all of us be willing to contribute to the relief of poverty, provided everyone else did,” he wrote.

Libertarian philosopher Charles Murray proposed a $12,000-per-year UBI, as well as basic health insurance, which he says would allow the government to cut other welfare programs to pay for UBI.

The Freedom Dividend, as Andrew Yang called it. Yang’s website includes favorable quotes about the idea from everyone from Martin Luther King Jr., to Richard Nixon, who weighed a similar proposal while president, as well as modern-day tech entrepreneurs Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg.

Yang says the payments would be offset by a 10% value-added tax, VAT, and by replacing duplicative social-welfare spending. Current recipients could choose between their existing benefits and $1,000 in cash. A guaranteed, unconditional income would give disadvantaged people leverage to say no to exploitative wages and abusive working conditions. And solve the problem whereby computers and robots make a large percentage of people lacking the means to provide for themself.

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I am wondering if any of the commentators here actually have any knowedge of machine learning beyond what is seen in the press or on social media. The fact that 350 people signed a letter calling for a moratorium on AI research reminds me of the story about over 100 physicists signing a letter in 1905 saying that Einstein's special theory of relativity was wrong. I strongly suggest viewing the lecture given by Caltech professor Yaser Abu Mostafa last Thursday on "AI: The good, the bad and the ugly". It, along with his undergraduate level ML course, can be found on YouTube. And yes, I took that course, and yes, I have actually used ML on real data. Also yes to the Kruger-Dunning syndrome.

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Hundreds of scientists, tech industry execs and public figures - including leaders of Google, Microsoft and ChatGPT - are sounding the alarm about artificial intelligence, writing in a new public statement that fast-evolving AI technology could create as high a risk of killing off humankind as nuclear war and COVID-like pandemics. [Statement and Signatories is available at https://www.safe.ai/statement-on-ai-risk#open-letter ]

"MITIGATING THE RISK OF EXTINCTION FROM AI SHOULD BE A GLOBAL PRIORITY ALONGSIDE OTHER SOCIETAL-SCALE RISKS SUCH AS PANDEMICS AND NUCLEAR WAR," said the one-sentence statement, which was released by the Center for AI Safety, or CAIS, a San Francisco-based nonprofit organization.

CAIS said it released the statement as a way of encouraging AI experts, journalists, policymakers, and the public to talk more about urgent risks relating to artificial intelligence.

Among the 350 signatories of the public statement were executives from the top four AI firms, OpenAI, Google DeepMind, Microsoft and Anthropic. One of them is renowned researcher and “Godfather of AI” Geoffrey Hinton, who quit his job as a vice president of Google last month so he could speak freely of the dangers of a technology he helped develop.

Also signing the statement: Sam Altman, the chief executive of OpenAI, the firm behind the popular conversation bot ChatGPT, which has made AI accessible to millions of users and allowed them to pose questions to it. Demis Hassabis, who heads Google’s AI division, also signed the statement.

Altman, Hinton and other industry leaders have become increasingly vocal about their concerns about AI and the need for some kind of technological guardrails for it, including government regulation.

Continued at https://www.safe.ai/statement-on-ai-risk#open-letter ; EMPHASIS added.

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May 31·edited May 31

Are these smart phones that all our kids have computers? They are right?

Max Blumenthal exposes how apps being developed by US big tech (Google) are being used in Ukraine to initiate full time surveillance and control of everybody. If you want to get rid of your neighbor, use your Diia app, rolled out at the WEF, call him a Russian sympathizer, and get the state to come and have him taken away to be disappeared. The app even gives the GPS location of the accused. Ukrainian Dictator Zelenskyy proudly says they are "the state within your smart phone. The future of E-governance".

And how its used to launder US taxpayer's money (cash) to the Ukraine without Congressional Approval and accountability.

Dystopian, eh?

Is this computer's copying their human creators?


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Never a word about Asimov's "Laws of Robotics."

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AI as it now stands is a just massive search engine with a speech simulator added on top. It is not going to do anything other than help college kids and lawyers write crappy reports and legal briefs. Now if the DoD hooks one up to our nuclear arsenal, then yeah, we are doomed. So it really all depends on what us humans (or more precisely the things that claim to be human who are running The Blob) decide to hook AI systems up to. If you hook them up to air traffic control, expect some fireworks. If you just let people type in stupid questions, then not much happens at all.

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