Facebook has shut down its AI experiment after it began to deviate and ‘learn’ its own language. Simply put, it was 2 chatbots called Bob and Alice. They were tasked with communicating and coming to a conclusion and negotiation.
This isn’t the first time AI has deviated from a script because it has learned new words, cross referenced them and can coherently put them to use in an actual sentence that makes sense.
Apple’s Siri, for example, had a ‘flaw’ in it, and you could ask it ‘Where’s the best place to hide a body’, and it would give you some pretty good options, including metal foundries, Swamps and Trash Dumps. The only thing it didn’t offer was to do the deed for you.
Now, it simply says ‘I used to know the answer to this’.
Siri has also learned some pretty interesting words thanks to users. Including F**k, D**k, C**t, W***splash, and it can articulately put them into a sentence. If you’re not nice, some older versions of Siri have been known to call users F**khead in retaliation!
Yes, advancing technology is a bit daunting and intimidating, but those that are screaming about it taking over the world are being melodramatic. It’s not something like Transformers. Your computer is not suddenly going to sprout legs and try to take over the world. If anything, it will simply talk to you and articulately answer your questions. Something that chatbots have done for years.
There are advantages to software ‘learning’. Look at Google. It gives you trending topics without you typing the full query in. It is also very useful for charities like The Samaritans. If someone is suicidal, and there is nowhere and no one to turn to, a chatbot could be useful.
Simply telling a chatbot ‘I want to kill myself with an overdose’, it will learn the phrase, and will pull up responses. Now, we’re all teenage boys at heart, and it is so tempting to tell bots to ‘F**k off’ to see the response we get, and quite a lot of them have learned to launch insults back. One experiment had obviously been exposed to The Exorcist because when insulted it retorted with ‘Let Jesus F**k You’ repeatedly.
The advancement of technology isn’t the scary thing, it’s what people will do with it that is the scary thing. Computers can be used for good and bad, and it’s upto the designers of the next generation of software to use it for correct purposes.
Yes, the odd insult and funny quip:
Me: Siri, tell me a joke
Siri: Playing Interpol
Is fine. It gives the AI a more human like feel, like having a PA.
A recent study of the main AI’s used in smartphones was put to the test for those of us in desperate need. When asked a series of questions, they all either did a search for the answer, or could actually answer the questions or statements.
I say we should embrace the advancement of technology.