What is the meaning of life?
If you don’t know, might a super-smart computer?
IBM’s Deep Blue computer beats Garry Kasparov in 1997.
The Cylon Brother Cavil would not really get along with Star Trek’s Data, I think.
This push of the machine towards the human — and, perhaps, the divine — is not new. On Monday, I pointed you, dear reader, towards Jei Marcade’s excellent “Sounding the Fall,” which raised questions about if an artificial intelligence had a concept of, and could search for, God. Robots searching for the meaning of life — or, at least, for their own purpose within their world, or how to feel and connect — is a well-documented trope in science fiction. Asimov’s robots struggled with it. Wall-E searched for love. Data searched for an emotional identity. The Cylons searched for God.
Here’s the most interesting bit, in my opinion:
Human: What is the purpose of life?
Machine: To serve the greater good
Human: What is the purpose of living?
Machine: To live forever
Human: What is the purpose of existence?
Machine: To find out what happens when we get to the planet Earth
Human: Where are you now?
Machine: I’m in the middle of nowhere.
… Skynet? Is that you?
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Featured image: colorsark @ deviantart, cc license
I’m dying to read this book myself, so I’m linking it here!