Deakin Communicating Science 2016

EES 200/101

Is Robotics Humanities Judgement Day?

Now, I have said why robotics will benefit us if we keep developing it but it would not be fair for me to complete ignore all of the issues that could arise from a world populated by machines.

The most common theory of our destruction by mechanical overlords is that eventually robots will obtain a intelligence that is similar to ours and that they will decide we, as humans, are no longer required. this concept has been shown through out popular media but by far the most well known is the Terminator series of movies. its post apocalyptic scenario is a perfect example of a Artificial Intelligence, more commonly known as A.I ,  reaching the Singularity event. The singularity event is when an A.I reaches the point where it is capable to recursive self improvement, possibly becoming able to created smarter A.I, creating a cycle which will go on past the point of our comprehension.  the year in which we reach this singularity is hotly contested.  Ray Kurzweil, an expert from the singularity University, predicts that the singularity will occur in 2029 while Stuart Armstrong and  Kaj Sotala argues that the event will occur in the 2040’s.

the possible progression of humanity.

The idea of humanities downfall by metallic hands is so prevalent that even Steven hawking is afraid about our development of robotics. in 2014 Hawking spoke about how “humans, who are limited by slow biological evolution, couldn’t compete and will be superseded” by  machines. though he does concern himself with how we will be overthrown if we progress to much, this does not mean he does not want the robotic industry to grow. Hawking uses robotics more than the average person due to his amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, need it to convey his brilliant ideas to the world.

There is currently a A.I that is on the path to the singularity and it is IBM's Watson Computing Systemused at Deakin. Watson, an A.I. that was made by IBM is capable of answering questions that are posed to it, to the point where it can be giving a question from the television show jeopardy with it weird structure and then go through all  of its database and present the answer in the correct format.  this sort of development is what
people are afraid of, when computers are capable of doing things that we assume only a human could possible accomplish.

know that I am done playing devil’s advocate, robots does have its down side but it is easily suppressed by not going beyond the point where the A.I is able to create more of itself without outside input and the point of the singularity is in such dispute between experts that it is almost like it would not happen for a few decades at the soonest. Even with this major downside the positives vastly out weight the negatives, with mechanical limbs restoring movement to people that were accidents, a safer way to rescue those that are in dangerous areas, like areas that have just been struck by earthquakes and will make general day to day painless.



S. Armstrong, K Sotala, 2012, How We’re Preditcing AI-or Falling to , 7/5/2016,

Rory Collan-Jones, December 2014, Stephen Hawking warns artificial intelligence could end mankind, BBC, 7/5/2016,

Nadia Khomami, 23rd February 2014, 2029: the year when robots  will have the power to outsmart their makers,  Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies, 7/5/2016,

Jo Best,unknown date,IBM Watson:the inside story on how the Jeopardy-winning supercomputer was born and what it wants to do next,CBS Interactive,7/5/2016,


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This entry was posted on May 8, 2016 by in Uncategorized.

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