Man Versus Machine

March 8th, 2014 by Michael Tabor

This argument has been around and has been the stuff of Science Fiction for as long as I’ve beenmanmachine alive and obviously for a much longer period of time than that. The truth of the matter is that until we begin to understand consciousness we have absolutely nothing to worry about in terms of machines getting so smart that they turn on us; at least in a literal way. Yes Watson, the trivia machine, beat the hell out of the smartest Jeopardy players on the planet, but Watson is not alive – has no consciousness. Watson doesn’t even know it’s a machine nor does Watson even know that it exists; Watson never even knew that it played a game of ‘Jeopardy’ against human beings.

I’ve just begun reading an incredibly compelling book called ‘The Second Machine Age’. It, as the title suggests, is about two things: 1. The industrial revolution which essentially ushered in mechanical engineering, chemistry, metallurgy, etc. but most importantly James Watt’s steam engine which we now know, looking back resulted in the biggest and fastest sustained jump in human progress and development.  It allowed us to overcome the limitations of raw human and animal muscle power and we saw the population literally double in just 100 years. Can you imagine that? So from say 6000 BCE when civilization started flourishing to 1760 (approximately 7,760 years), the population was 110 million. 100 years later in 1860 it was more than 220 million.

Now with the second machine age, 2014,  the world’s population is at an astonishing 7 Billion people. Computers and the digital age; EVERYTHING is digitized !!! So WhaDaYaThink ? Will a machine ever be cognizant of itself ? Will man versus machine ever become a reality ???

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One Response to “Man Versus Machine”

  1. magdalena Says:

    Machines are taking over the world and are about to, and are about to, and are about to……excuse me while I upgrade my memory.

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