The past few weeks I’ve been slowly working my way through a pair of articles on artificial intelligence from WaitButWhy.
I don’t usually post about articles I read – I’m not sure it would be that interesting, honestly – but I feel unsettled by the ideas here. As Tim Urban (the author) writes,
reading about AI will make you reconsider everything you thought you were sure about—including your notion of death.
And he’s not kidding. A point Urban returns to over and over is that the brightest minds don’t disagree with things that seem science fiction to us right now (nanotechnology as red blood cells, re-arranging molecules basically as an anything-goes alchemy, eliminating the aging process); however, where most of the contention comes from is whether developing artificial intelligence will lead to our extermination or our immortality.
It makes me want to lie down and close my eyes, and simultaneously very interested to see what comes next.