Your Homework is Late
Word of the Day
Four years ago, Dictionary.com picked “existential” as the Word of the Year. They were premature. In the past few weeks that word has appeared in nearly every other sentence read or heard anywhere in any language. Google it.
Being careful what I wish for
I have railed on for years about the importance of mathematics. No one listened. The education system has now produced millions of these
If you have not followed the week’s eruption around Artificial Intelligence and the leadership of OpenAI, you must have been on vacation under the ice sheet in Antarctica. Welcome home. It is time to start watching AI because it sure is watching you.
My Three Sams
Sam Bankman-Fried is in jail for trying to horn in on Uncle Sam’s Welfare Scam action. Last week Sam Altman, the latest techie enamored of Effective Altruism, became the out-then-in-again head of OpenAI over a product enhancement called Q* (pronounced “Q star”). Apparently this Genie, about to escape the bottle (or already out), veers a bit too close to World Dominance to suit the comfort of some of its creators. What Reuters reported is ominous:
“Given vast computing resources, the new model was able to solve certain mathematical problems, the person said on condition of anonymity because the individual was not authorized to speak on behalf of the company. Though only performing math on the level of grade-school students, acing such tests made researchers very optimistic about Q*’s future success, the source said.
Researchers consider math to be a frontier of generative AI development. Currently, generative AI is good at writing and language translation by statistically predicting the next word, and answers to the same question can vary widely. But conquering the ability to do math — where there is only one right answer — implies AI would have greater reasoning capabilities resembling human intelligence.”
The last line fits the definition of Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), a bit above the intelligence you encounter daily, and a step forward for computers. If you look at the link you will see that it contains the word “existential” and says AGI is has not yet been created. Keyword: “yet."
Free Sam Bankman-Fried!!
Quoting from Michael Lewis’ book about SBF
“…because in [Senator Mitch] McConnell, Sam had found someone as interested as he was in another existential threat to humanity: Donald Trump. Trump’s assault on the government, and on the integrity of US elections, belonged, to Sam’s way of thinking, on the same list as pandemics and artificial intelligence and climate change.“
What SBF, in his youthful ignorance, overlooked was that ALL politicians, universally of questionable intelligence and doubtful integrity, armed with very powerful artillery only listen to science when it can be contorted to the achieve their own self-serving and parochial interests (cf. “COVID”). Think: “Hi! I am from the government, I am here to help and I brought AI with me.” If you thought those vaccines were dangerous…
An Impossibility Theorem
We (that would be me and many others before me) have established scientifically that Altruism does not exist in nature. Thus, “Effective” or any other kind of Altruism will necessarily be unnatural and imposed on humans by force. Something about Q* made the Dr. Frankensteins at OpenAI think twice. This might be the time for the rest of us to think of it for the first time.
If it is not too late.