Artificial intelligence is slowly beginning to have an impact on our society. The technology becomes increasingly better, people who’ve tried VR are surprised as to how real it is, some are scared and fear monger that it will “kill us all” and that it’s the end of humanity.
The most revolutionary application for A.I. has yet to come, and that’s the existential one.
In the near future, when conscious machines become more integrated into our lives, we will see a transformation in how we define what it means to be a living being take place.
These questions are already getting explored in several sci-fi movies and video games. We see stories of men falling in love with these artificial beings.
In the Movie Ex Machina, for example, we see how Ava (The Robot) is designed to appeal to Caleb, make him fall in love with her, and in the end manipulate him in order to escape.
She has a human voice and is beside her looks almost identical to a human being.
To take this further, we can say that A.I in the future will be able to grow their psychological and intellectual capacities, on their own.
Such a rapid growth may seem unfathomable but the advancements we are seeing in deep learning today are showing that it’s possible.
What is Deep learning?
The advancements in deep learning have allowed computers to rival humans in many areas where they’ve traditionally struggled such as pattern recognition, and natural language processing.
The beauty of deep learning is that these artificial neural networks train themselves and allow them to improve their skills without humans having to interfere.
A.I robots raise many questions about the nature of consciousness and love.
It doesn’t make sense to be in love with an inanimate object that lacks the ability to self-reflect and reciprocate feelings.
However, an advanced A.I. robot would be able to think, act, and feel for itself; it would behave very similar if not exactly like a human being.
A robot that would have emotions, memories, a sense of continuity, the capacity to self-reflect and the ability to use language to communicate all of this. How could anyone not fall in love with such a thing? It’s practically a perfect being, and you could design it exactly how you want it.
But here is the thing: How do we know if an A.I. has an inner experience of consciousness or if it was simply programmed to create the illusion of consciousness? Same with love or any other emotion. How do we know that those feelings are genuine? I don’t know, and it might not be possible to know that, but would it even matter?
If we get the desired result from this A.I. robot, which could be sex, companionship, friendship, literally, anything, then would it matter if it was just programmed or if those feelings and actions were genuine?
Also, how can you know if other human beings are experiencing consciousness just as you are?
This is known as the hard problem of consciousness, and it remains as one of the biggest mysteries in neuroscience.
Neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga says, “I don’t know if you’re conscious. You don’t know if I’m conscious. But we have a gut kind of certainty about it. That is because an assumption of consciousness is an attribution, a social attribution.”
The same can be applied to AI. And the line between the consciousness experienced by machines and humans will be harder to distinguish than you might think.
Our technology, powered by Moore’s law, is growing at an astonishing rate and just recently my mind was blown again as to how fast we are developing all these things.
Smartphones and other intelligent devices are becoming more integrated into our lives, and to some degree, we are so dependent on them that we already are “cyborgs.”
Futurist Ray Kurzweil predicts that we will have A.I. at a human level by 2029, and it will be a billion times more capable than humans by the 2040s.
Others believe that one day we will merge with powerful machines, and we, ourselves, may become artificially intelligent.
In such a world, where our existence will be largely non-biological, it is only logical that we eventually fall in love with entirely non-biological beings.
That begs the question tho: Why love at all?
The feeling of love (which is a mechanism to compel you to breed) is probably one of the most powerful forces that have allowed us to get this far as a species.
It stimulates your drive to procreate, to stay alive and to protect those who are close to you.
Considering those effects of love, programming A.I. to have the capacity to feel love could allow us to create a more compassionate A.I. and may be the key to avoiding the AI overlord apocalypse.
We developed machines to fulfill many of our needs, from communication to construction, to solve problems, etc.
And soon we will use technology to enhance the human condition which includes our intellectual and physical abilities. (The Neural lace that Elon Musk was talking about comes to mind)
Technology will also allow us to attain the love that most of us seek in the opposite sex. It will allow us to create our ideal version of a woman or a man, from the personality to physical appearance.
Instead of searching for “The One”, we will create them. Instead of playing games and wasting your time at bars trying to get laid, you’ll have your ideal version of a female at home, highly advanced, intelligent, and exactly how you want it.
Instead of consistently getting fucked over because of bad relationships, you could design algorithms that give you all you ever asked for.
A.I. might be able to rid us of the fear of loneliness by giving us access to something we all crave, the desire to love and to be loved.
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