If you follow techies like Elon Musk, you have probably heard some “doom and gloom” about the “singularity.” What is this? It is the day when machine intelligence overtakes human intelligence, and we all get plugged into the matrix. That didn’t happen when Highster Mobile reviews came out, but then again, a lot of people didn’t know what they were missing.
Recently, a video by Boston Dynamics has been making the rounds on social media. The intrepid folks in Boston have created a robot which can turn a doorknob. But honestly, even with these abilities, should we really worry about the day when machines take over the world?
First, there is a difference between “Machine Learning” and “Artificial Intelligence” which doesn’t get talked about very much. Machine Learning tasks encompass basic pattern recognition. Some tasks show a definite pattern that are detected by fancy math.
Artificial Intelligence is all about whether or not a machine can masquerade as a human. To be able to read like a human, a machine should be able to read a complex novel like “Pride and Prejudice” and deliver a thoughtful book report on it. While computers can automatically summarize text, they aren’t yet at the point where they can understand the romantic tension underlying Darcy and Elizabeth’s witty banter.
The difference between Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence is like the difference between deciphering symbols and understanding Pride and Prejudice. The past decade has seen tons of progress in the area of Machine Learning. But, this doesn’t mean that Artificial Intelligence is on the horizon. Doing one well doesn’t automatically get you the other.
What About Self-Driving Cars?
Another definition of Artificial Intelligence is the ability of a computer to perform a complex task. There is one complex task where artificial intelligence has done very well: self-driving cars. Google has developed software (now called Waymo) that is quite capable of driving on roads, and many other companies are following their lead.
While driving a car is an impressive, complex task–much like learning about the tech in Highster Mobile reviews–, it has taken nearly a decade of human-led research to achieve. When self-driving cars hit the market, it will be a triumph of human intelligence, not a triumph of the machines. Without the countless of hours which researchers and designers have put into the technology, your Ford pickup will stay in the driveway.
No Robot Apocalypse Yet
The real triumph behind self-driving cars is human innovation, mixed with advances in Machine Learning (especially Computer Vision). Driving isn’t thinking. While computers may be able to open doors, they need to think to bring about the robot apocalypse. Let’s hold off the doomsday talk until they do.