The Illusion of Intelligence
All of our machines have accomplished some re-creation of ourselves – have made us better in exciting ways we could not resist. And we have always ended up serving these amplifications of ourselves – simply because we had to.
It’s time we stopped this idolatry, and used our brains for a change – and gave up our eternal chase after getting better. Because the latest reincarnation of ourselves, the computer, is destroying our minds – which for most of us, feels like the ultimate thrill – self-destruction!
The computer is so dangerous because it seems to be intelligent – when it is nothing but a parody of intelligence. I must take some time to explain this – even though it should be transparently obvious.
Most will resist admitting this, because everyone now believes in the computer – and considers any criticism of it as sacrilege.
Allow me to speak against it. I spent most of my working life serving it – and I am using one right now, in the middle of my breakfast, to write this. The computer is a superb writing instrument, and I will say that until the day I die – which may not be too far away. But I have noticed that the more I become a computer, the less I am human. But I also notice that no one else seems to notice this. No matter; I see what I see – whether any one else can see it or not.
All you have to do is poke around in the guts of the thing to realize what it is – and how we are deceiving ourselves about it. There is only one appropriate response here: the primal scream.
But this can only be uttered by humans – of which there are not many left.