Artificial Intelligence has been developing so rapidly, that technologies such as the one shown above are not as far off as people believe. It brings along the opportunity to impact humanity in both a positive and negative way. Looking back 20 years, the idea of a fully self driving car seemed crazy but we are closer to that achievement than ever. This is not the only field that could ultimately have a tremendous impact on the human race.
Elon Musk is one of the most innovative people today, he questions nearly everything in the world from how we travel to how we think. Most people know Musk for his electric car company, Tesla. But he also runs other extremely innovative companies such as Neuralink and the Boring Company. Both with the capability to change humanity forever.
Aside from Musk’s many other companies, he runs a high-speed tunnel company known as ‘The Boring Company’. These tunnels are designed to eliminate the time spent sitting in traffic in combusted cities, such as Los Angeles and allow cars (Exclusively Teslas) to travel at high speeds up to 120+ mph. Musk also attempts to eliminate the amount of time driving in traffic by adding the Autopilot feature to his cars. Allowing drivers to sit back while the car drives itself. Given the amount of time that people spend in the car commuting back and forth to work, this could grant people a significant amount of leisure time.
When people have more time, this ultimately is going to lead to more innovations in return as well. An extreme case that can be looked at is with the ancient Roman and Greek empires. Once they were not fighting in wars constantly and had more time they were able to significantly increase the number of inventions. This same type of impact could be seen as more and more AI plays a larger role in our lives. In return granting people increased amounts of leisure time to do such activities.
Musk’s next company, Neuralink is already pairing AI with the brain. Neuralink uses Artificial Intelligence to create 23 millimeter chips to be implanted into the brain, with the initial function to restore partial or full motor functionality. In the future, Musk plans to possibly push the limits of the device by adding the capability for more intelligence. Further, this would allow humans to increase brain capacity and even be able to ‘download’ certain languages. This may seem like a feature from a Science Fiction movie, but it is here now and it already has a working demo on pigs. Obviously, people are going to be hesitant at first once the product becomes available to the general public. But once it becomes mainstream, it is going to change humanity forever.
Below shows how the steps of how the chip would be implanted into the brain. Musk has gone on both the Lex Fridman and Joe Rogan podcast to explain how the chip would be inserted. He envisions a process where the patient will be able to have the procedure done and leave the same day. This is a bold claim, but the procedure is going to be completed almost 100% by AI for extreme procession.
When listening to Elon Musk speak, he often speaks about how AI must be regulated in some fashion, the same way that cars are and other technologies. He fears that AI could have some extremely negative consequences if not regulated properly. One dangerous level of AI is developing it to the point where it is learning so much that it is creating it’s own models without any human input or understanding.
Other important questions to ask about AI, are the ethics and decisions it makes in difficult situations. One example is with autonomous vehicles, important split second decisions must be made and it is critical that we allow these machines to make the right one. An extreme example of this is if the car would need to decide to either stop short, causing an accident with the car behind it or continue and possibly hit a pedestrian. So how will these decisions be made? Will this come entirely through a learning algorithm or will we have some kind of interference on what the vehicle decides to do? It is going to be at this point where Artificial Intelligence has the ability to come with deadly consequences.
Another point that could be very dangerous for the human race is when AI starts to have self-realization and begins to realize how we are using them to make predictions, etc. This would ultimately take an extreme amount of innovation to occur, however it is possible. So how can we attempt to stop this devastating ending? Elon Musk has gone on the Joe Rogan podcast multiple times to discuss some of these issues and has proposed several solutions. One being that the government regulate Artificial Intelligence as they do with the production of food and drugs. This would ensure that companies are staying inline with the ethics of humanity and that no harm is being done while creating these products.
In conclusion, it is important that as a society we regulate AI properly and ensure that none of the doomsday scenarios seen in many Science Fiction movies and books are avoided.