Topic: Considering the significance of artificial intelligence in the future and its relationship with humans

Since the 1950s, reaching or even surpassing human intelligence has been a significant dot on the horizon in the search for intelligent computers. In addition to the multiple technological hurdles, this search, according to Rudy van Belkom, project head of the Future Vision of Technology Foundation’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) future exploration, is extremely difficult for three reasons:

  1. We have no idea how intelligence interacts with individuals.
  2. Many important concepts (such as consciousness) lack a widely agreed practical definition, making it difficult to demonstrate their presence.
  3. What we consider intellect is continuously changing.

Following a literature review, several expert meetings, and substantial Artificial Intelligence research, Van Belkom came to these and other conclusions.


“It’s tough to “clone” intelligence. As a result, experts disagree on when humanity will develop human level Artificial Intelligence. The dot on the horizon moves with the seasons and appears to be the same distance away. It is not impossible, however, for “the intelligence code” to be cracked.”


What if things that appear to be extremely difficult may be addressed using a simple algorithm? According to Van Belkom, AI is already capable of making artwork and composing music. Many individuals find it difficult to accept this as genuine innovation. On this matter, there is also a philosophical debate on whether humans are just programmed and hence do not act as independently as we believe.

Artificial Intelligence may thus become humanity’s next “insult.” Machines have previously outperformed humans in terms of physical work and computer power, and now our mental potential is in jeopardy as well. Our mental power has always set us apart from all other living things on the planet and given us, at least emotionally, control over our surroundings. AI is a reflection of humans. It teaches us a lot about ourselves and forces us to ask fundamental questions about what it means to be human.


Is it truly necessary to seek for human intelligence? Submarines do not swim like fish, and airplanes do not fly like birds, according to Van Belkom, who then questions why computers should think like humans. He goes on to say that if you give a spider human intellect, it will act like a “super spider,” capable of spinning even greater webs to catch victims.

We will only take significant progress, according to Van Belkom, if we let rid of the notion that we are superior humans. He goes on to say that humans are not superior to insects because we both developed for different purposes. Insects are more likely to survive a nuclear apocalypse than humans, despite having more complex cognitive capacities.


Van Belkom asserts that instead of viewing the creation of intelligent machines as a goal in and of itself, we must ask ourselves for what purpose we want to use intelligent machines. How can we use intelligent machines to make the world a better place? And, more specifically, what is a better world? Man and machine should collaborate based on their respective specializations. Complex statistics should be handled by computers, while socially sensitive issues should be handled by people. Van Belkom inquires Why should we imbue machines with emotions? He prefers to make computers as objective as possible. This could be more useful because people, with all of their evolutionary programmed prejudices and emotions, are not very good at being objective in a court of law.


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