Friday, January 23, 2009

Intel: Robots smarter than humans in 40 years (39 yrs 8 months...)

Not sure how this slipped by me back in August, but Intel has predicted that we're reaching an inflection point in the growth rate of our technology. They believe that ai's going to surpass human learning within 40 years... just in time for me to retire- eat it suckers! (Suckers are people younger than me.)

FTA: "The industry has taken much greater strides than anyone ever imagined 40 years ago," said Justin Rattner, CTO of Intel said.

Personally I'd like to come a little sooner- like say twenty years from now- but hey, I'll take what I can get. Its important to also note that full human AI doesn't have to be reached before it would dramatically impact labor. How many jobs really require full human level intelligence? What percentage? Fifty? That seems high to me. I think you could easily cull most of retail, a good portion of hospitality, food and beverage, factory, custodial... and even low level education jobs, certainly data entry, and with them the support jobs associated with them... administrative assistants... with, what? A program that can 1) learn and function at the level of say IQ of 80? (A deceptive term- basically the program would need to be able to develop specialist knowledge but it wouldn't actually need to have an IQ which reflects general intelligence.) The robots needn't have an opinion on Shakespeare. They don't need to be able to hold dinner parties. They just need to be able to perform a job and interact with the other programs or, rarely, humans.

And where will this leave us? What will the vast majority of people, suddenly unemployed and unemployable, do? I have a host of speculative theories... for another time.

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