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Doomsday Scenarios-Big Science Discussion @ Computer History Museum (CHM) in Mt View, CA on October 27, 2012

Several very provocative doomsday scenarios were discussed, but then refuted by subject matter experts called up to the stage to engage in conversation with the program hosts.  For each scenario top scientists were called on stage to discuss and refute several spectacular predictions about the end of the world as well as scientific theories about how it might end. This was a live taping of a "to be edited" future radio show.

The doomsday scenarios included: Mayan calendar ending 12/21/12, asteroids, global warming/ climate change, world-wide pandemics, etc...

But the really big threat was perceived to be intelligent micro-computers embedded in smart phones or other mobile computing gadgets taking over our lives and shoving humans aside. Many in the audience beleived that threat to be quite plausible.

SETI;s Seth Shustek, the scienctist moderator, cited Moore's law which he claimed would continue to double processing power every 18 months. Yet that has nothing to do with advances in AI and thinking machine algorithm development, which have badly lagged semiconductor, disk drive, displays and other technological progress in the last 4 decades! While the two subject matter experts agreed that AI experts predictions have been way off, they did feel that progress in AI was coming more rapidly now. One cited computer driven cars as an example of things computers could NOW do better than humans. Other more obvious examples were arithmetic & chess (Jeopardy game too). There was also talk of a brain-machine interface for patients that had undergone brain surgery and had electrodes implanted in their head.

Nonetheless, I;m a skeptic that we;ll see the equivalent of the robot HAL in 2001 a Space Odyssey, which I saw in June of 1968 in Boston, MA.

Any other opinions that are substanitated by solid evidence of AI progress?

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