Embracing technology….. with a pinch of salt

8 August 2016
8 August 2016 Tenaka

We are a privileged generation, witnessing leaps in technology at a rate few would argue has been witnessed before. But are humans overly reliant on technology, where it could lead to a decline in the intelligence and forward thinking that brought us to this point of accomplishment as civilisation to begin with?

Television, mobile phones, GPS, computers and the internet are technologies that the majority of modernised civilisation cannot live without.

Unknown (or known, for that matter) destinations a few kilometres away cannot be navigated without a GPS to hand. While typing this, I realised the amount of spelling mistakes I was committing lazily, knowing that the AI in my word processor would take care of it.

With the internet of things (IoT), connected devices are currently at 22,9 billion, with the number looking to increase to 50,1 billion in 2020 — that’s an average of 6 devices connected to every person in a global population of 7 billion in 2020.

Our lives are, or will be, literally connected to the internet. All our data — personal documents, health data, data about our devices, vehicles, educational — is being stored on the cloud by companies like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and Dropbox — the list goes on. These companies collate the user data we store with their services to give a more personalised experience for us users.

As our lives become more and more entrenched in the internet, artificial intelligence development is speeding ahead, evident in our daily lives with AI suggesting routes to work, restaurants to visit, places worth visiting. Have you noticed: we are not actually making our own choices, we are merely making a choice that is served to us.

While these services are beneficial to our daily lives, where do we draw the line and question our reliance on them?

Artificial intelligence is helping people save lives and is a positive addition to our lifestyle in many ways, but at the same time, some say that machines and artificial Intelligence will take jobs away and affect the most threatened.

What would happen if 20–40 years from now when evolved artificial intelligence becomes self aware? Would we be too entrenched, at that point?

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