Engineer: Robots Could Wipe Out Humanity to End Suffering

Sunday, 24 Aug 2014 10:50 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Robots of the future could kill off humans unless they're taught the value of human life, Amsterdam-based engineer Nell Watson says, warning that their artificial intelligence could lead them to conclude that the best thing for the human race would be to end its suffering.

"The most important work of our lifetime is to ensure that machines are capable of understanding human values," said Watson at the 2014  Conference by Media Evolution in Sweden earlier this month, reports The Daily Mail. "It is those values that will ensure machines don't end up killing us out of kindness."

Computer chips may soon have the brain power of a bumblebee, Watson says, which would allow them to analyze social situations.

"Machines are going to be aware of the environments around them and, to a small extent, they're going to be aware of themselves," said Watson, who is the chief executive for the body scanning firm Poikos.

"We're starting to understand the secrets of the human brain," she said. "It's going to create a huge change in our society all around the world."

But Watson doesn't believe a robot uprising would be all bad, as machines can help humans understand themselves. But still, she wondered if robots with high levels of artificial intelligence will be friendly or unfriendly.

Her warnings come after those made this month by Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk, who believes artificial intelligence will one day be more powerful than nuclear weapons.

"Hope we're not just the biological boot loader for digital superintelligence," said Musk. "Unfortunately, that is increasingly probable."

He invests in AI companies to keep track of the technology so it won't get out of hand, and in March, he, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, and actor Ashton Kutcher invested in AI group Vicarious, which is building a program that mimics the brain's neocortex.

That part of the brain controls spatial reasoning, conscious thought, language, and sensory perception.

Like Watson, professor Stephen Hawking says technology is learning to think for itself, creating an uncertain future for humanity.

Related Stories:

Elon Musk Giving $1 Million to Tesla Museum on Long Island
Pew Survey: Robots Will Take Your Job — Or Not

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Next Partisan 'War' in New Congress Will Be Over Science

Friday, 28 Nov 2014 19:58 PM

After midterm battles, an immigration standoff and amid a switch of power in Congress, the next political fight in Washi . . .

New 15-minute Test for Ebola to Undergo Trials in West Africa

Friday, 28 Nov 2014 07:31 AM

A new test designed to rapidly diagnose Ebola virus infection is to be tried out at a treatment centre for the disease i . . .

Limestone 'Venus' 23,000 Years Old Dug up in France

Thursday, 27 Nov 2014 15:59 PM

A limestone statuette of a shapely woman some 23,000 years old has been discovered in northern France in what archaeolog . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved