Monday May 20, 2024

A vision of an AI future that may not include humans

In intellectual tech circles, a debate over artificial general intelligence and the AI future is raging. 

Dan Faggella is in the middle of this highly charged discussion, arguing on various platforms that artificial general intelligence (AGI) will be here sooner than many people think, and it will likely take the place of human civilization. 

"It is most likely, in my opinion, that should we have AGI, it won't follow too long from there that humanity would be attenuated. So, we would fade out," Faggella said on the Targeting AI podcast from TechTarget Editorial. 

"The bigger question is how do we fade out? Is it friendly? Is it bad?" he said. "I don't think we'll have much control, by the way, but I think maybe we could try to make sure that we've got a nice way of bowing out." 

In addition to his role as an AI thinker, Faggella is a podcaster and founder and CEO of AI research and publishing firm Emerj Artificial Intelligence Research. 

In the podcast episode, Faggella touches on a wide range of subjects beyond the long-term AI future. He takes on election deepfakes (probably not as dangerous as feared, and the tech could also be used for good) and AI regulation (there should be the right amount of it), as well as robots and how generative AI models will soon become an integral part of daily life. 

"The constant interactions with these machines will be a wildly divergent change in the human experience," Faggella said. "I do suspect absolutely, fully and completely that most of us will have some kind of agent that we're able to interact with all the time. 

Meanwhile, Faggella has put forth a vision of what an AGI-spawned "worthy successor" to humans could look like in the AI future. He has written about the worthy successor as "an entity with more capability, intelligence, ability to survive and (subsequently) moral value than all of humanity." 

On the podcast, he talked about a future inhabited by a post-human incarnation of AI. 

"Keeping the torch of life alive would mean a post-human intelligence that could go populate galaxies, that could maybe escape into other dimensions, that could visit vastly different portions of space that we don't currently understand," he said. 

Shaun Sutner is senior news director for TechTarget Editorial's information management team, driving coverage of artificial intelligence, unified communications, analytics and data management technologies. He is a veteran journalist with more than 30 years of news experience. Esther Ajao is a TechTarget Editorial news writer and podcast host covering artificial intelligence software and systems. Together, they host the Targeting AI podcast. 

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