Firstly, did you assume the singleton in the title was a human being? A strong desire to anthropomorphise, or make things like us, can prevent us from making good decisions or perceiving meaning accurately.
What I perceived as a desperate singleton will say more about me than I might want to reveal :^); it is wide open to interpretation, judgment, and dependent on the context you bring to it. We talk to inanimate objects, we chastise our cars when they breakdown, we try to reason with our computers; there is a deep need to humanise objects and things we interact with on a daily basis. If I talk to it nicely, it might work... and so on.
Some of us are also doing this with artificial intelligence. One of the mile stones for AI is to pass the Turing Test. To have an AI good enough to hold a human conversation, and make it indistinguishable from us. We want to progress to the point where we cannot tell the difference between us and technology.
It’s a fantastic aspiration and one that will at some point be achieved, but we must consider carefully the problem with our innate desire to humanise technology. AI is not like us. What is very troubling to me is the combination of AI and robotics. You may have been seeing these two technological fields in sperate silos but to have a complete understanding of a possible future you have to combine them.
With this combination we are literally giving AI legs to walk among us. Combining AI with robotics and our desire to make them ‘like us’ or ‘real’ is the very worst thing we can do. Whether they look like Sophia Loren, Ava, or even Paro the Sealion they are no more alive or sentient than concrete.
If we don’t change the way we think we will have unrealistic expectations and subjective assumptions about these machines that can in no way be matched. So, going back to the singleton, what is it?
A singleton has different meanings depending on what topic it is applied to and the context it is used in - computer programming, dating, etc. In this case it refers to a superintelligence that is created having taken singular control over our society, and our world as a whole, by taking over all other AI manifestations. The singleton will control our world through the AI systems we use currently - our IoT devices, satellites, cars, defence networks, everything.
And the question is what will it do? This is one of the biggest questions we face in trying to understand a superintelligence and the very thing we must not anthropomorphise. How do we comprehend this if we continue to strive for superintelligence, artificial intelligence, and the multiple combinations with machines, to be humanistic, to be like us?
Do you consider the singleton will have human-like motivations? Will it be driven by concern for our well-being and continued existence on the earth? We must rethink, we must stop the discussions about morals and whether AI will experience guilt or pleasure. Having said that, wire heading is another fantastic topic to explore, but not now.
Let’s put aside our base human desire to find faces in patterns, and get on with the real questions about an augmented future that will be controlled by algorithms not thoughts; the Monte Carlo simulation, not whim or guilt. Lets get back to the math and the data, that’s where the future lies; not in Steven Spielberg’s rendering of AI in the fictional character David, or the desire to achieve self-aware, stage Four AI.
Stop making things ‘like us’ and let’s have a completely fresh look at what to do with superfast computing, limitless storage, and global connectivity the like we have never experienced before. It is a brave new world, let’s have a brave new look at what we might achieve.