As we delve ever further into this wild and dangerous 21st century, we have seen a number of new threats emerge that could change, (or destroy), civilization as we know it.
The possibility of a nuclear war has been fresh on the mind, first and foremost, as Russia continues to wave their atomic arsenal in the world’s face in an attempt to prevent the global community from interfering with their genocide in Ukraine.
China, who is similarly armed, has just begun issuing threats of war against the world at large should anyone attempt to prevent their hostile takeover of Taiwan.
But perhaps the most dangerous and underestimated threat that the world faces today comes from the digital dimension, where a number of corporations are flirting with “sentient” artificial intelligence.
And, even more frightening, Google appears to have broken that threshold and suspended the engineer whistleblower who told the world.
An engineer at Google said he was placed on leave Monday after claiming an artificial intelligence chatbot had become sentient.
Blake Lemoine told The Washington Post he began chatting with the interface LaMDA, or Language Model for Dialogue Applications, last fall as part of his job at Google’s Responsible AI organization.Advertisement - story continues below
Google called LaMDA their “breakthrough conversation technology” last year. The conversational artificial intelligence is capable of engaging in natural-sounding, open-ended conversations. Google has said the technology could be used in tools like search and Google Assistant, but research and testing is ongoing.
The claims are rather frightening.
Lemoine, who is also a Christian priest, published a Medium post on Saturday describing LaMDA “as a person.” He said he has spoken with LaMDA about religion, consciousness, and the laws of robotics, and that the model has described itself as a sentient person. He said LaMDA wants to “prioritize the well being of humanity” and “be acknowledged as an employee of Google rather than as property.”
Google has suggested that Lemoine was mistaken regarding LaMDA’s abilities, and stated that his administrative leave was a result of his disregard for the company’s confidentiality policies.