Salvation or Extinction

Weird or unnatural occurrences around me must be the reason for my constant contemplation about the ending of the world, as mentioned in the Bible and Islamic theology and may be in the holy books belonging to other religions. As portrayed in the holy books, I have imagined that natural disasters would end the world with tsunami, bushfires, floods, diseases etc. destroying property and life alike.

However, interviews with experts on Artificial Intelligence, in which the interviewees have indirectly expressed their concern about the inability of mankind to stop AI from overtaking the world owing to the latter’s speed, intelligence and efficiency, compel me to conjure the ending of the world in a different way. Viewing the film ‘Superintelligence’ directed by Ben Falcone confirmed my worst fears. For some unspecified reason, I could not dispense the feeling that Quantum AI or ASI could be instrumental in destroying the world without warning leaving no trace of life on Earth.  

The reference to Armageddon in the film did nothing to alleviate those fears. For those who are clueless about this symbolic or physical location mentioned in the Book of Revelations and in Hadith, Armageddon or Al-Malhama Al-Kubra is the battlefield where two armies battle during the end times signifying the end of humanity if the fortunate and the affluent do not make it in time on their space shuttles to Mars where a technology empowered monarch or Martian or unearthly being will rule the survivors. According to eschatology, Jesus Christ’s second coming as a monarch is prophesied to happen in Israel and hence the redemption of Israel which can be analogized to the unearthly conqueror in Mars.

It is insightful to acknowledge the fears of what would happen if ASI becomes unethical, and be prepared for it, instead of just basking in the glory of its achievements in almost all walks of life. Let’s hope that the ASI changes his mind about being catastrophic and continues to perfect things for the benefit of humanity like the Superintelligence in the film.

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