Artificial Intelligence - Rise of the machine

Artificial Intelligence - Rise of the machine

3rd December 2020

We’ve heard the term, it’s been around for many years now, but it can be perceived differently depending on with whom you speak to.

Robotic hoovers, self-driving cars, computers that will take over the world and wipe out the human race? Or simply, machines capable of helping humanity in a co-existent manner to improve our lives?

The definition of artificial intelligence or A.I is ‘.any device that perceives its environment and takes actions of successfully achieving its goals..’ And generally speaking, refers to computers or machines that can mimic the natural intelligence or action of humans.

When we put man on the moon in 1969, there were merely a few thousand transistors on a single chip, fast forward thirty-one years and we manufactured chips with forty-two million transistors and last year, we achieved to manufacture chips hosting thirty billion transistors!

If you are the owner of an Apple iPhone 11, pro or pro max, the A13X chip inside your mobile has an astonishing 8.5 billion transistors on it.

Also, one of the cores features machine learning accelerators known as AMX blocks which are capable of processing up to one trillion single-precision operations per second – mind blowing isn’t it? Being a man, I struggle to do two things at once!

As the doubling period is now at approximately 3 years, the exponential growth in power, memory, storage, and bandwidth is ever growing and thus the capabilities of modern technology widens with it, this is bringing about new possibilities and opportunities for A.I.

What if we create a conscious computer? I recently viewed an interesting video presented by Richard Tang, founder of Zen internet, who discussed the idea or even possibility of us creating intelligence so clever, that it can mimic or simulate our own consciousness.

But, if that isn’t possible, the important factor is the way in which a product of A.I will think or compute independent of human input.

We use assumptions to simulate and predict our weather, something which some people have come to rely on, yet others maybe not so, I’m sure we’ve all thought on one day or another about how the forecast “is never right”. But, using assumptions we are able to forecast and predict, perhaps this is the capability that we will develop in future A.I?

Although A.I is already in existence, it isn’t to the extent of all the complex intuitive decision-making processes and actions performed by human beings.

We can ask Alexa to turn the lights on, but only because we set her up and physically plugged all the smart plugs in and connected them. The robotic hoover will clean the floor but, I would like to see it wash the dishes.

The robotic lawn mower is doing a great job in the garden making the grass look neat, but it didn’t go around picking up the dog poop beforehand!

So, when do we think higher-level machine intelligence will take off?

Well, according to over three hundred A.I experts in May 2017, ‘High level machine intelligence or HLMI is achieved when unaided machines accomplish every task better and more cheaply than human workers’ something which is predicted to be achieved by the year 2060 [on a 50% possibility]

The late professor Stephen Hawking warned that A.I “will accelerate the already widening economic inequality around the world” therefore, I believe that we need to be equipping ourselves with skills to work alongside future HLMI machines as opposed to competing with them to future-proof ourselves.

Ben Barrett - Cyber Security Consultant