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Obama on AI: It's Really Happening

Barack Obama artificial intelligence automation technostism Obama UBI automation economics World Economic Forum president politics

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#1
Yuli Ban

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Is this real life? Or is it fantasy? 
 
First the goddamn World Economic Forum expressed interest and concern in AI and automation, and now the president of the United States of America is doing the same. 
 
What. The. Fuck.
 

Obama: Synthetic Intelligence Will Totally Transform Our Future

Obama warns of the danger of AI wiping out jobs

Obama Wants the Government to Help Develop AI

Obama geeks out over A.I. We Must Remake Society in the Coming Age of AI: Obama



What the fuck is happening?!


  • superexistence and Infinite like this

And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#2
Astralator

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"We’ve been seeing specialized AI in every aspect of our lives, from medicine and transportation to how electricity is distributed, and it promises to create a vastly more productive and efficient economy. If properly harnessed, it can generate enormous prosperity and opportunity. But it also has some downsides that we’re gonna have to figure out in terms of not eliminating jobs. It could increase inequality. It could suppress wages."

 

The most truth I have seen a politician speak since ... well since a while.

 

Let me tell you what's happening - turns out that all the experts, all us futurist "lunatics" are being taken serious, at least by the people in power. Really, the mainstream and the Average Joe are pretty much the only ones still clueless. 

 

The issue is that whenever someone speaks of the dangers of AI, people immediately imagine terminator robots and sentient skynet - while the much more immediate threat to their lives is actually the friendly Pepper making their simple job redundant, or the new software replacing their repetitive office role.


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Playing God is actually the highest expression of human nature. The urges to improve ourselves, to master our environment, [...] have been the fundamental driving forces of all of human history. Without these urges to ‘play God’, the world as we know it wouldn’t exist today.” - Ramez Naam


#3
Raklian

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^ And he talked about the universal basic income as one of the ways to address the technological unemployment that will come in few decades' time which speaks volumes.


What are you without the sum of your parts?

#4
TranscendingGod

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Losing our job in today's day and age is only a problem because having a job itself is the problem. We have the capabilities to eliminate this archaic systemic farce of quasi- indentured servitude 

 

The elimination of the the necessity of work, which is unarguably the root of so much distress, is something that we should be heralding as a new era. 


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The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#5
Yuli Ban

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Really, the mainstream and the Average Joe are pretty much the only ones still clueless. 

I've rarely brought this up out of fear of sounding elitist, but I've felt this to be true for years. If you ask the layman about any of the things we discuss regularly, they'll almost always want to drop the discussion ("That's something for our grandkids to worry about!") or turn the discussion towards science fiction.

And yes, mainstream media is partially responsible. 

 

I believe I've mentioned A&E Moms, haven't I? Those that watch all those crime shows, Lifetime, and maybe the local news, and that's about it; the ones who compose the primary market for Candy Crush Saga and Facebook, basically. And then there's those trendsters who like the latest trendy gadgets, but don't actively look for what's coming out next— they'll eagerly snatch up the Apple Watch, or Gear VR, or ride around on hoverboards, but they lack the temporal self-awareness to see how futuristic these things are. Or dudes who keep to the likes of Spike, Comedy Central, ESPN, and the like.

Barely any care in the world about where sci-tech currently resides. The ones who have absolutely no knowledge about what's coming, but will get into an argument with you about how advanced we actually are. 

 

When one of these types discovers futurism and latches onto futurology, they go through an initial bout of euphoria because they can't believe just how technologically advanced we really are; then they become disillusioned by how technologically advanced we aren't. Then their expectations either temper, or they become radical Singularitarians. Or, like me, they fall somewhere in between.


  • sasuke2490 likes this

And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#6
TranscendingGod

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Can i have your official stated position Mr. Yuli? 


The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#7
Casey

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I was thinking just a few days ago about how much fun it would be to go back in time six years and dump everything futurism-related onto my past self (2010 being the last year before I discovered futurology).

 

Self-driving cars? The concept had never even crossed my mind. 

Virtual Reality? I knew what it was, but never thought about it, ever. Just something that showed up in sci-fi now and then.

Gene therapy and gene sequencing? Never heard of them.

Artificial Intelligence? Well, I know there's AI in videogames... does it mean anything beyond that?

Quantum computers? Huh? What's that?

3D printers? The printer I have for the computer is three-dimensional, is that what you mean?

Universal Basic Income? Never heard of it.

Technological automation and unemployment? Never crossed my mind.

 

So many terms and concepts that have become part of my daily vernacular were completely foreign to me. I just assumed that life would always be more or less the same. My feelings towards the various emerging technologies and scientific fields have become more nuanced over the years - some areas I think deserve plenty of optimism and excitement, others less so - but on the whole there's a lot that I'm excited about. I'm glad that FutureTimeline introduced me to the idea of the future being an infinitely different thing from what my 23 and younger self believed it would be.


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#8
Yuli Ban

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I was thinking just a few days ago about how much fun it would be to go back in time six years and dump everything futurism-related onto my past self (2010 being the last year before I discovered futurology).
 
Self-driving cars? The concept had never even crossed my mind. 
Virtual Reality? I knew what it was, but never thought about it, ever. Just something that showed up in sci-fi now and then.
Gene therapy and gene sequencing? Never heard of them.
Artificial Intelligence? Well, I know there's AI in videogames... does it mean anything beyond that?
Quantum computers? Huh? What's that?
3D printers? The printer I have for the computer is three-dimensional, is that what you mean?
Universal Basic Income? Never heard of it.
Technological automation and unemployment? Never crossed my mind.
 
So many terms and concepts that have become part of my daily vernacular were completely foreign to me. I just assumed that life would always be more or less the same. My feelings towards the various emerging technologies and scientific fields have become more nuanced over the years - some areas I think deserve plenty of optimism and excitement, others less so - but on the whole there's a lot that I'm excited about. I'm glad that FutureTimeline introduced me to the idea of the future being an infinitely different thing from what my 23 and younger self believed it would be.

This is what I've been saying myself.
 
I believe I even created a thread on it somewhere.
 
Pre-Posting Edit: After a bit of searching, I've come to the conclusion that it was the Future Shock thread, but I retroactively put words onto the screen that weren't actually there, so let me explain.
 
I've always been a "futurist", going as far back as when I was 8 years old, but I didn't become a futurologist until 2014 (the Born-Again Singularitarian thing)— I didn't even discover the Future Timeline until 2011. 
 
So while I've had interests in the future since at least 2002-2003, it took a decade for that to sprout into a legitimate passion. And despite all that, I still wouldn't believe you if you told me all these things would exist by 2016.
 
Actually, I think it's because I was so intrigued by future sci-tech that I would not have believed you. 
 
Unlike Casey, in 2010 I had more of an idea of these sorts of things, but I woefully underestimated when they'd be important. And you hafta remember— 2010 was just 6 years ago. It was part of the same decade. That's how much things have changed!
 
I distinctly remember visiting a YouTube video discussing communism during the summer of 2010. This was during my Glenn Beck days, so I was a virulent anti-communist. Despite that, I actually defended communism by saying there was one possible way for it to work— with robots. Those debating with me shot that down, telling me to take off my tinfoil hat. And even said that, by the 2100s, this might be possible. Not the 2020s or 2030s, like you'd hear me say now— the 2100s. 
 
What really shocked me is something I found out last month. Back in 2009, I was writing this crappy story that was set in 2017. I wanted to find some pictures of tech that would exist by then. What did I see? I very distinctly remember seeing stuff like: smart watches, flexible phones, touch screens, space planes, holograms, and whatnot. I went "Pfft. Yeah right, maybe in the 2100s." When I imagined 2017, I imagined something a bit more like Tokyo, Japan as it was back in the 2000s, except spread across the world. Nothing too futuristic.

 

I noticed a few weeks ago when I had googled "2017 technology" that almost all of the things I googled back then are either real or plausible— you can even find my post about it on reddit.
Back in 2012 and 2013, whenever I image searched for creative ideas of what near-future tech would look like, I always wrote off what I saw as being too futuristic for that particular year. 2020, for example, came across as being ridiculously futuristic on too many fronts. It seemed like you had to add 40 or 50 years before such gadgets would become real. And now? Well....


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And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#9
Raklian

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I guess most of us were really thinking too linearly even though we knew technological progression was supposed to be happening at an exponential rate.


What are you without the sum of your parts?

#10
UtopianAims

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It is real life. AI is real and its potential is real. The only people to deny it are those who simply do not read up on it.



#11
Water

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I've had a whole bunch of jobs, and I'm now getting into IT. This has made me aware of two things.

 

The first is that with almost everything about all my previous jobs, I can now imagine a script fully automating what I've done, some of which could be written in 1 to 3 days. This means that there must be a crapload of jobs out there that are actually completely obsolete, but we keep them because current capitalism doesn't want progress, it wants us to simply remain in motion or it loses its value. If there are no jobs, they'll just conjure up a few useless ones.

 

The second is that I'm seeing such a rapid development of automation, that I believe that very soon the only relevant jobs left are in computers itself or culture. Culture, because that is all about sentience and human idols. Aspiring art carreers is getting less and less "silly" because of this.


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#12
tornado64

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I've had a whole bunch of jobs, and I'm now getting into IT. This has made me aware of two things.

 

The first is that with almost everything about all my previous jobs, I can now imagine a script fully automating what I've done, some of which could be written in 1 to 3 days. This means that there must be a crapload of jobs out there that are actually completely obsolete, but we keep them because current capitalism doesn't want progress, it wants us to simply remain in motion or it loses its value. If there are no jobs, they'll just conjure up a few useless ones.

 

The second is that I'm seeing such a rapid development of automation, that I believe that very soon the only relevant jobs left are in computers itself or culture. Culture, because that is all about sentience and human idols. Aspiring art carreers is getting less and less "silly" because of this.

 

Maybe at some point in the future AI researchers & AI programmers are the only jobs left. :D



#13
Raarnt

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I have worked as an IT-support consultant for the last five years, which helps me stay up-to-date on the latest trends and developments. Unfortunately my company operates within the oil industry, and are merging with a competitor which means lots of people will get laid off in the near future. 

 

This is happening all over the world. World leaders need to wake up and make plans on how to handle the socio-economic impact of declining oil and advancing AI which are already costing people their jobs.

Many businesses, including mine, are completely ignorant to the impact of AI and have a very rigid linear mindset.

 

Like Water said, I can easily imagine a sufficiently advanced script automating 90% of my daily tasks. It's just a matter of time.


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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Barack Obama, artificial intelligence, automation, technostism, Obama, UBI, automation economics, World Economic Forum, president, politics

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