Culture – Case Against AI

I was ‘inspired’ to write this article because I read the botifesto “How To Think About Bots”. As I thought the ‘botifesto’ was too pro-bot, I wanted to write an article that takes the anti-bot approach. However, halfway through writing this blog post, I realized that the botifesto…wasn’t written by a bot. In fact, most pro-bot articles have been hand-written by human beings. This is not at all a demonstration of the power of AI; after all, humans have written optimistic proclamations about the future since the dawn of time.

If I am to demonstrate that AI is a threat, I have to also demonstrate that AI can be a threat, and to do that, I have to show what machines are currently capable of doing (in the hopes of provoking a hostile reaction).

So this blog post has been generated by a robot. I have provided all the content, but an algorithm (“Prolefeed”) is responsible for arranging the content in a manner that will please the reader. Here is the source code. And as you browse through it, think of what else can be automated away with a little human creativity. And think whether said automation would be a good thing.

For example, robots are very good at writing 9-page textbooks. Now, I understand that some textbooks can be dry and boring. But it is hard to say that they are not “creative enterprises”.

Here’s a dystopian idea. The term “creative enterprise” is a euphemism to refer to “any activity that cannot be routinely automated away yet”. Any task that we declare ‘a creative expression of the human experience’ will be seen as ‘dull busywork’ as soon as we invent a bot.

Now, some people may argue that these algorithms are not examples of “intelligence”. The obvious conclusion must be that hiring people, beating people at Go, and playing Super Mario must also not be tasks that require intelligence.

Source: Culture – Case Against AI