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posted by hubie on Tuesday April 18 2023, @05:48PM   Printer-friendly
from the don't-be-a-doomer dept.

The AI Doomers' Playbook:

AI Doomerism is becoming mainstream thanks to mass media, which drives our discussion about Generative AI from bad to worse, or from slightly insane to batshit crazy. Instead of out-of-control AI, we have out-of-control panic.

When a British tabloid headline screams, "Attack of the psycho chatbot," it's funny. When it's followed by another front-page headline, "Psycho killer chatbots are befuddled by Wordle," it's even funnier. If this type of coverage stayed in the tabloids, which are known to be sensationalized, that was fine.

But recently, prestige news outlets have decided to promote the same level of populist scaremongering: The New York Times published "If we don't master AI, it will master us" (by Harari, Harris & Raskin), and TIME magazine published "Be willing to destroy a rogue datacenter by airstrike" (by Yudkowsky).

In just a few days, we went from "governments should force a 6-month pause" (the petition from the Future of Life Institute) to "wait, it's not enough, so data centers should be bombed." Sadly, this is the narrative that gets media attention and shapes our already hyperbolic AI discourse.

[...] Sam Altman has a habit of urging us to be scared. "Although current-generation AI tools aren't very scary, I think we are potentially not that far away from potentially scary ones," he tweeted. "If you're making AI, it is potentially very good, potentially very terrible," he told the WSJ. When he shared the bad-case scenario of AI with Connie Loizo, it was "lights out for all of us."

[...] Altman's recent post "Planning for AGI and beyond" is as bombastic as it gets: "Successfully transitioning to a world with superintelligence is perhaps the most important – and hopeful, and scary – project in human history."

It is at this point that you might ask yourself, "Why would someone frame his company like that?" Well, that's a good question. The answer is that making OpenAI's products "the most important and scary – in human history" is part of its marketing strategy. "The paranoia is the marketing."

"AI doomsaying is absolutely everywhere right now," described Brian Merchant in the LA Times. "Which is exactly the way that OpenAI, the company that stands to benefit the most from everyone believing its product has the power to remake – or unmake – the world, wants it." Merchant explained Altman's science fiction-infused marketing frenzy: "Scaring off customers isn't a concern when what you're selling is the fearsome power that your service promises."

[...] Altman is at least using apocalyptic AI marketing for actual OpenAI products. The worst kind of doomers is those whose AI panic is their product, their main career, and their source of income. A prime example is the Effective Altruism institutes that claim to be the superior few who can save us from a hypothetical AGI apocalypse.

In March, Tristan Harris, Co-Founder of the Center for Humane Technology, invited leaders to a lecture on how AI could wipe out humanity. To begin his doomsday presentation, he stated: "What nukes are to the physical world ... AI is to everything else."

[...] To further escalate the AI panic, Tristan Harrispublished an OpEd in The New York Times with Yuval Noah Harari and Aza Raskin. Among their overdramatic claims: "We have summoned an alien intelligence," "A.I. could rapidly eat the whole human culture," and AI's "godlike powers" will "master us."

[...] "This is what happens when you bring together two of the worst thinkers on new technologies," added Lee Vinsel. "Among other shared tendencies, both bloviate free of empirical inquiry."

This is where we should be jealous of AI doomers. Having no evidence and no nuance is extremely convenient (when your only goal is to attack an emerging technology).

[...] "Rhetoric from AI doomers is not just ridiculous. It's dangerous and unethical," responded Yann Lecun (Chief AI Scientist, Meta). "AI doomism is quickly becoming indistinguishable from an apocalyptic religion. Complete with prophecies of imminent fire and brimstone caused by an omnipotent entity that doesn't actually exist."

[...] The problem is that "irrational fears" sell. They are beneficial to the ones who spread them.

[...] Are they ever going to stop this "Panic-as-a-Business"? If the apocalyptic catastrophe doesn't occur, will the AI doomers ever admit they were wrong? I believe the answer is "No."

Doomsday cultists don't question their own predictions. But you should.


Original Submission

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Original Submission

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  • (Score: 2) by Tork on Tuesday April 18 2023, @06:49PM (4 children)

    by Tork (3914) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 18 2023, @06:49PM (#1301971)
    It'd be interesting to me if the AI development would land in the worker's hands before the employer's. Supercharge me instead of replacing me.

    Oh well, while I'm daydreaming I'm looking forward to using an AI tool to handle my delivery disagreements with Amazon. Recently their grocery service neglected to deliver three items we had paid for. Their stupid-ass customer service AI demanded we return items we never got so we could get a refund. I had to spend twenty minutes convincing the AI to put a meatbag on who was like: "yep, no prob!" I would rather have spent 30 seconds setting up an AI to handle that, bonus points if I can turn up a setting that makes it take MORE time as an enticement to Amazon to fix their shit.
    --
    🏳️‍🌈 Proud Ally 🏳️‍🌈
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by krishnoid on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:33PM (3 children)

      by krishnoid (1156) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:33PM (#1301992)

      Get it to start replacing legislators, or even putting the fear of it in them. That'll get them moving really fast.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:36PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:36PM (#1302142)

        The AI is actually trying to answer questions whereas election officials are trying not to answer questions. Perhaps in the next version...

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:29PM (1 child)

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:29PM (#1302172) Homepage Journal

        Insightful? We've been infiltrated by a Facebooker or a Twitter Twit! Can't whoever modded that see it was intended to be a joke? In English-speaking countries, our legislators are elected by our populations. Your government's stupid decisions are your own stupid decisions. "Da Gubmint" is YOU.

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Snotnose on Tuesday April 18 2023, @06:57PM (4 children)

    by Snotnose (1623) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @06:57PM (#1301972)

    comic books? Heavy metal music? McMartin Preschool? Slasher movies? Hell, the Internet?

    Just another way for the government and MSM to keep the sheeple scared.

    Remember kiddos. Fear both spawns bad laws while thinking of the children, and generates clicks.

    --
    My ducks are not in a row. I don't know where some of them are, and I'm pretty sure one of them is a turkey.
    • (Score: 1) by anubi on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:19AM

      by anubi (2828) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:19AM (#1302059) Journal

      Yup...

      https://duckduckgo.com/?q=never+let+a+good+crisis+go+to+waste [duckduckgo.com]

      Scare the people into a stampede, then lead them to do stuff they normally wouldn't do.

      It's a proven way to take over control of something if you can scare the people who have control into simply handing control over.

      It generally leaves manipulative control freaks in power, leaving violence the only way out, as the ones who use this kind of manipulation to acquire power recognize it when they see it and won't fall for it.

      --
      "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
    • (Score: 2, Offtopic) by VLM on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:11PM

      by VLM (445) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:11PM (#1302100)

      Don't forget the recent virus in your list of fear mongering. Also the terrorist attack in DC in January.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:36PM (1 child)

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:36PM (#1302174) Homepage Journal

      NEWS FLASH: It ain't "de gubmint". YOU put that government in power. And they're not the ones trying to make you shit your pants, the media are, the media who are owned by the very rich people who want you too scared to rebel against them. They have been stealing your labor for generations, and since they own the media, you won't know that only they paid taxes in 1940, there were no homeless in 1965, and a single paycheck raised a family until Reagan's class war against the working stiff..

      I thought the internet might fix it, but didn't realize just how fucking STUPID the average dumbass really is until I saw Facebook.

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by DannyB on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:38PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:38PM (#1302195) Journal

        The internet didn't make people stupider. It made it easier for stupid people to voice their stupidity and disinformation to a massive audience. The stupid people, even being a minority, realize they are not alone in their stupidity. Or perhaps insanity.

        --
        To transfer files: right-click on file, pick Copy. Unplug mouse, plug mouse into other computer. Right-click, paste.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Tuesday April 18 2023, @07:58PM (43 children)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @07:58PM (#1301983)

    I've welcomed technology since I got into it in the 70's. AI is a massive, fantastic revolution. I read it in Heinlein and Asimov books, and it's happening within my lifetime. I never thought I'd see AI happen, just like I never thought I'd see the surface of Pluto or water on Mars. AI promises to free mankind from toil and make work something everybody can do only if they want to,

    But here's what I see: the small company I work for was planning to hire 2 junior programmers to do menial programming jobs on our environment testers. It's boring, but it needs doing, and it would have provided a bit of cash and a bit of experience to freshly-minted computer engineers. The company has provided similar summer jobs for local U graduates for 40 years.

    Why was it canceled you ask? Because GPT-4 did the job in 30 minutes last week. The junior coders ain't needed no more, and the boss reckons they won't be needed for other menial job neither - and he's right: the chatbot spews out easily fixable code in seconds.

    That's what I see. AI won't free mankind from toil: it'll take away everybody's means of earning a living to benefit a few ultrarich fucks. Because capitalism.

    Am I a doomsayer?

    • (Score: 2) by Tork on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:11PM (4 children)

      by Tork (3914) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:11PM (#1301984)
      I'm hoping we're not too far away from hearing stories about these tools creating new jobs for peeps. I tried to come up with an example but nothing's springing to mind. :/
      --
      🏳️‍🌈 Proud Ally 🏳️‍🌈
      • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:18PM

        by mhajicek (51) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:18PM (#1301987)

        There is only so much work that needs to be done. When that's done you do work that's much appreciated, then work that's nice to have, with each step reducing the value of the work, and therefore how much people will pay for it. When that value gets below the cost of living, you're in poverty.

        If AI tools are doing work in the nice to have category, en mass, almost for free, you'd better hope you're in an important niche that's hard to automate.

        --
        The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 3, Disagree) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:40PM (2 children)

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:40PM (#1302003)

        I have felt for a long time: Transparency is always the answer.

        When we don't have anything else to do, we can keep tabs on each other. Open government, public information everything, and then develop openly trustable audit-tree structures where people watch what people are doing and make the ultimate decision makers answerable to those who put them in charge. If you're not a busy-body and you don't really care how government runs, don't vote, etc. then you can just be along for the ride, but for the people who do care, who live and breathe outrage at all the graft and corruption there is (and will always be) they not only could, but should be empowered to expose it, to prove it, to provide better alternatives and convince the voters that their alternatives are the best.

        As it stands, politics - particularly local politics - is a really low-effort game. Develop a popular public image, get a little name recognition going, and you're in. Once you're in you have the incumbent advantage which lowers the bar even further for your staying in. So many of our local players are ex-news anchors because that put them in the spotlight for the voters to develop that name recognition. Improving this situation with transparency and independent auditing would seem to be a really low bar at the moment, all it takes is people with the time on their hands to do the digging and presentation of the stories - like investigative journalists used to do.

        --
        🌻🌻 [google.com]
        • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Wednesday April 19 2023, @04:58AM (1 child)

          Improving this situation with transparency and independent auditing would seem to be a really low bar at the moment, all it takes is people with the time on their hands to do the digging and presentation of the stories - like investigative journalists used to do.

          To be fair, there still are some investigative journalists around. Unfortunately, they only exist in large markets whose publications (especially since small town newspapers and radio/tv stations are pretty much non-existent these days) can afford to support such research and reporting.

          The George Santos [nytimes.com] story is a good example. A little (two months after the election) late, but still good investigative journalism.

          Correction: I'm leaving the above in place, but while looking for the link to the NYT story, I found out that a small (circulation 20,000) local paper broke this news [theleaderonline.com] months before -- so I guess there still are some local papers who do this sort of thing. In fact, they've been all over that story since it broke. [google.com]

          And good on them! We need a lot more of it.

          --
          No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:55AM

            by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:55AM (#1302090)

            Voting by mail makes it so much easier to do a little research on the candidates before choosing one, but a lot of incumbents (and Republicans) will decline to give interviews or statements or give vacuous statements, which is fine: then don't vote for them, but sometimes the race is between two of those, or one of those and an obvious wing-nut, but between a wing-nut and a stone wall isn't exactly an informed choice....

            Even with candidate self statements, having (several) independent accounts of incumbent voting records, obvious conflicts of interest (a lot of our environmental protection office candidates are actively employed in coastal construction that requires permits from the office they are running for...) would go a long way to enabling more informed choices than straight party ticket voting.

            --
            🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by mhajicek on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:12PM (3 children)

      by mhajicek (51) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:12PM (#1301985)

      And then in another generation, there won't be any experienced programmers, 'cause they never got the entry level job to start learning.

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by looorg on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:19PM

        by looorg (578) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:19PM (#1301988)

        Indeed. How will you get experienced people if there are no junior people to evolve or develop? Then you end up with the usual, current, circlejerk of business where they hire the experienced people from each other and at the same time cry about how there isn't enough people or experience around. A self created problem.

      • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:25AM (1 child)

        by deimtee (3272) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:25AM (#1302033) Journal

        Yes, but long before then ChatXYZ will be good enough to do the advanced level programming.

        --
        If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:41PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:41PM (#1302143)

          Soon enough it will be able to do our wishful thinking for us too!

    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:33PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:33PM (#1302000)

      > The junior coders ain't needed no more

      Yes, and no. The junior coders are needed so they can grow up into senior coders, and those senior coders are needed so they can mature into senior principal coders, etc.

      There are a number of industries (machinists come to mind) where automation has cut off the supply chain of junior apprentices, and when the old guys age out nobody is going to know how to talk to the automation engines anymore.

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:12PM (22 children)

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:12PM (#1302012) Journal

      Why was it canceled you ask? Because GPT-4 did the job in 30 minutes last week. The junior coders ain't needed no more, and the boss reckons they won't be needed for other menial job neither - and he's right: the chatbot spews out easily fixable code in seconds.

      Who fixes the easily fixable code?

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:28PM (21 children)

        by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:28PM (#1302017)

        We do - the seasoned programmers. And when we retire, there will be no more seasoned programmers, because the junior ones will never have been given a chance to season.

        But then perhaps there won't be any need for seasoned programmers anymore. If there is though, I never claimed this was sustainable: what my boss and all other bosses do is as short-sighted as deforesting without replanting. Worse: I'm actually pretty sure my boss doesn't want to do that, but he has to, because whoever doesn't race to the bottom will lose out. So everybody does it because everybody else does it.

        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:55PM (20 children)

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 18 2023, @10:55PM (#1302020) Journal

          We do - the seasoned programmers. And when we retire, there will be no more seasoned programmers, because the junior ones will never have been given a chance to season.

          I guess what I find weird here is why aren't the interns/juniors doing these tasks? The decision-making seems pretty weird here. Your company supposedly found a way to greatly amplify the abilities and value of your interns. So... now you're going to get rid of the interns and divert your more valuable seasoned programmers to do code monkey stuff?

          Does that make sense? And who owns the code that GPT-4 generates?

          You acknowledge that your boss is short-sighted, but I think there's more going on here. Sounds to me like he was planning to get rid of the interns anyway and this was just the pretext. Short-sighted but of the usual head count reducing sort not the exotic AI are stealing our jobs sort. Probably time to polish that resume. :-(

          • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:35AM (19 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:35AM (#1302034)

            An experienced programmer would have checked over intern code anyway before it went into any serious company's product. (Is roscoe the one doing medial devices or is that joe?). Now they're just checking GPT-4 code instead of intern code.

            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:44AM (18 children)

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:44AM (#1302038) Journal

              An experienced programmer would have checked over intern code anyway before it went into any serious company's product.

              An intern would have checked over the intern code too. Not seeing the point to this.

              Is roscoe the one doing medial devices or is that joe?

              Joe is. Maybe Roscoe too? I dunno.

              • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @10:56AM (17 children)

                by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @10:56AM (#1302094)

                They went from :
                Intern coding, senior programmer checking : $X + $Y = $(X + Y)
                to:
                GPT-4 coding, senior programmer checking : $0 + $Y = $Y

                They save $X by using GPT-4.

                What are you not seeing?

                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday April 19 2023, @01:23PM (15 children)

                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 19 2023, @01:23PM (#1302109) Journal

                  What are you not seeing?

                  The part where the pre-GPT cost of the senior programmer is allegedly the same as the post-GPT cost.

                  • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:54PM (1 child)

                    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:54PM (#1302130)

                    paying your employees more just because you added more responsibility to their jobs? ridiculous!

                    you of all people khallow, cmon

                    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:12PM

                      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:12PM (#1302167) Journal

                      you of all people khallow, cmon

                      Sorry, I didn't get enough straw in my diet this week. I'll try harder.

                  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @11:42PM (12 children)

                    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @11:42PM (#1302206)

                    The $Y probably went down as well. His original post explicitly states the GPT-4 code is easily fixable. I have seen plenty of junior programmer code that is not.

                    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Thursday April 20 2023, @11:18PM (11 children)

                      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 20 2023, @11:18PM (#1302330) Journal

                      His original post explicitly states the GPT-4 code is easily fixable.

                      That means an intern could easily fix it too. Never forget comparative advantage. What's the point of your expensive senior programmer doing intern work?

                      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 22 2023, @07:41AM (10 children)

                        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 22 2023, @07:41AM (#1302533)

                        He also explicitly said a senior programmer checks all their code before it goes into a product.

                        What part of "a junior programmers' work needs checking before it gets into a product" are you missing?

                        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @12:30AM (9 children)

                          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @12:30AM (#1302614) Journal
                          What part of "a GPT-4's generated work needs checking before it gets into a product" did I miss?
                          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 23 2023, @11:15AM (8 children)

                            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 23 2023, @11:15AM (#1302648)

                            Are you intentionally missing the point?
                            They replaced junior programmers with GPT-4. This saves them money, but it also denies Junior programmers some of the experience they need to become senior programmers.

                            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:16PM

                              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:16PM (#1302678) Journal
                              The part where it actually saves work for the senior programmers.
                            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:36PM (6 children)

                              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:36PM (#1302680) Journal
                              Let me elaborate here: we have one of those choice grids where one axis is with or without interns (rows) and the other is with or without GPT (columns). And we have the prior that of the two cells without GPT, the one with interns was preferred.

                              My take just at the start is that of the two choices without GPT, the one without interns is the cheaper option right there. Interns work for a while and then get their work reviewed by an expensive senior anyway (remember all the whining in this thread about how much work it is to review intern code). I doubt there's any costs saved in the first place to using interns.

                              Instead, we need to consider relative value, not just a decision made as if that prior decision had never been made. That is, history demonstrated that the business in question had decided that interns had a value beyond allegedly saving cost. My take is that senior coders only with GPT is still less valuable than senior coders and interns with GPT because GPT doesn't add that much value to a senior's work and you push the GPT work on to the senior while in the second case, the intern with their hidden value becomes more valuable via GPT.

                              My bet is that the business isn't doing well and long term investments like employing interns no longer are within the business's horizon. GPT here is probably just a pretext for reducing head count to stay above water.
                              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @01:54AM (5 children)

                                by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @01:54AM (#1303980)

                                I suggest you go back and read this thread from the beginning. You really are missing the point.

                                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 30 2023, @03:14AM (4 children)

                                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 30 2023, @03:14AM (#1303993) Journal

                                  I suggest you go back and read this thread from the beginning. You really are missing the point.

                                  What would be the point? Why not just say whatever it is you really want to say?

                                  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @03:51AM (3 children)

                                    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @03:51AM (#1304004)

                                    GPT-4 is replacing junior progammers.
                                    In the short term this saves the company money.
                                    In the long term there won't be any senior programmers because there are no junior programmers now to mature into being senior programmers.

                                    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 30 2023, @02:19PM (2 children)

                                      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 30 2023, @02:19PM (#1304049) Journal

                                      GPT-4 is replacing junior progammers.

                                      Sure, that's the excuse. But as I have repeatedly noted, GPT-4 makes junior programmer work more valuable and honestly has more of an impact on junior programmers than on senior programmers.

                                      In the long term there won't be any senior programmers because there are no junior programmers now to mature into being senior programmers.

                                      At least from that failing business. My take is that there wouldn't be anyway.

                                      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @09:44PM (1 child)

                                        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 30 2023, @09:44PM (#1304092)

                                        GPT-4 is replacing junior programmers for free. How the hell can it be making their work more valuable?

                                        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Monday May 01 2023, @01:17AM

                                          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Monday May 01 2023, @01:17AM (#1304124) Journal

                                          GPT-4 is replacing junior programmers for free.

                                          It's not free because as I noted the senior programmer is stuck with that work.

                                          How the hell can it be making their work more valuable?

                                          It's the same way GPT-4 make anyone's work more valuable.

                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:44PM

                  by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:44PM (#1302144)

                  Actual outcome: GPT-4 coding, senior programmer checking, management bonuses : $0 + $(X+Y) + $Z = $(X+Y) + $Z

                  Until the whole charade crumbles.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:41PM (7 children)

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:41PM (#1302175) Homepage Journal

      That's always been the drawback of all new technologies. The steam shovel replaced two hundred men at a time. The electronic computer replaced the human computers who did math for a living. Automotive robots took more jobs.

      How many jobs did the invention of the wheel kill?

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Thursday April 20 2023, @12:04AM (6 children)

        by deimtee (3272) on Thursday April 20 2023, @12:04AM (#1302208) Journal

        That's always been the argument against those that would suppress technology. "It will create more jobs to replace those that are lost while boosting everyones' standard of living."

        I am in favour of that, but this time is different. Up until now we have kept almost full employment by adding what David Graeber called "Bullshit Jobs!". Excessive management and makework paperwork tracking things that no-one ever looks at again. Supervisors standing around watching people who would work better without the watcher. Outbound call centre peons ringing inbound call centre peons to try to sell them stuff. Take four years out of everyones' working life by making them go to college for a degree that isn't relevant. Even when jobs are necessary, useless tasks are added until the jobs adds up to a full work week.

        This AI is going to take away the Bullshit Jobs that we have been using to cover up the fact that we don't actually need to all work 40 hours a week to provide for the entire human race. We can't continue to add Bullshit Jobs, workers are already revolting and we are also running up against resource limits.

        Society is going to have to either learn to deal with a reduced work week where everyone can live comfortably on fewer hours of work per week, or a reduced worklife (10 to 20 years then retire), or a Butlerian Jihad.

        My estimate is that it is currently less than 15 hours, and falling. The rest of what we do is either makework or easily automated, and AI is going to take away both.

        --
        If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday April 21 2023, @12:45AM (4 children)

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday April 21 2023, @12:45AM (#1302339) Journal

          but this time is different.

          Doesn't look it to me. Here's my take on this. First, consider bullshit jobs. The problem here is that it's bullshit jobs by Mr. Graeber's opinion not that of the business. For example, Graeber had this to say [strikemag.org]:

          But rather than allowing a massive reduction of working hours to free the world's population to pursue their own projects, pleasures, visions, and ideas, we have seen the ballooning of not even so much of the ‘service’ sector as of the administrative sector, up to and including the creation of whole new industries like financial services or telemarketing, or the unprecedented expansion of sectors like corporate law, academic and health administration, human resources, and public relations. And these numbers do not even reflect on all those people whose job is to provide administrative, technical, or security support for these industries, or for that matter the whole host of ancillary industries (dog-washers, all-night pizza delivery) that only exist because everyone else is spending so much of their time working in all the other ones.

          Not a one of the jobs he mentions here in this paragraph is actually a bullshit job. They all have value to their employers/customers, sometimes lots of value (for example, financial services, corporate law, and public relations). So one of your planks is pretty weak. Moving on:

          Take four years out of everyones' working life by making them go to college for a degree that isn't relevant.

          We could just not do that. Not an argument for suppressing technology, right?

          Even when jobs are necessary, useless tasks are added until the jobs adds up to a full work week.

          Again, what does this have to do with technology or its potential suppression? We could just not do that.

          Fundamentally, there's no incentive for business to create makework or bullshit jobs. Something else is going on. My take is that it's centralization of business power in response to government regulation. How else can you explain why more efficient small businesses have so much trouble competing with allegedly bullshit job-ridden huge businesses? Something has to compensate for the higher costs per capita of inefficient labor. My take is that large businesses have a vastly easier time managing the constraints put on business by our governments.

          This AI is going to take away the Bullshit Jobs that we have been using to cover up the fact that we don't actually need to all work 40 hours a week to provide for the entire human race.

          What does "provide for the human race" mean? For example, are we presently providing a high quality developed world standard of living for everyone? No. Does everyone live as long as they would like? No. Do we have lots of spaceships and cool things happening in space? That's my thing right now. How about extending and elevating human awareness and intellect? We doing enough of that? At some point, we have to recognize that we aren't providing for the human race, even for low lying fruit like a developed world standard of living. There is a huge amount of work that needs to be done. And well, we are doing it to some degree, but rather slowly. Looks to me like more automation is vitally needed actually just from this.

          Society is going to have to either learn to deal with a reduced work week where everyone can live comfortably on fewer hours of work per week, or a reduced worklife (10 to 20 years then retire), or a Butlerian Jihad.

          Why cripple our ability to do stuff when we have so much to do? Why not work as much as we'd like and a few thousand or few million years worklife (with plenty of dialing to the level and quality of work you'd like).

          My take is that there's two problems here. First, a corruption of perception that refuses to see that automation continues to provide the same benefits it has provided for centuries. Somehow, "this time is different" even though it's not. Jobs are "bullshit" because a pundit says so. Non-technological failings are blamed on technology. And of course, work is somehow zero sum, every time we automate, it takes work from somebody. This despite centuries of history demonstrating otherwise.

          Second, a corruption of goals for humanity. We see this all the time in fictional stories, particularly fantasy and a surprising amount of science fiction. Nothing changes. One gets super-advanced technology or magic and often the result is that everyone still lives the usual spans of time, lives the usual sort of lives, and knows the usual sorts of knowledge. When the stories allow for those who are more advanced, there's usually over-the-top drawbacks (like the person has to feed on the blood of others or has a tortured awareness). Ancient civilizations routinely have about the same level of technology as modern ones. World-altering change is near universally bad.

          These failings are our poverty of imagination not a failing of our technology.

          My take actually is that this new automation technology routes around a lot of damage that has accumulated in developed world societies. Things like shorter work weeks, minimum wage laws, poorly thought how workplace safety and environmental laws with high compliance costs, and the formation of many cartels and rent-seekers. These are what hold us back.

          It makes no sense to halt a force that has been a positive change in our lives for far longer than anyone has lived.

          • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Friday April 21 2023, @12:10PM (3 children)

            by deimtee (3272) on Friday April 21 2023, @12:10PM (#1302379) Journal

            This AI is going to take away the Bullshit Jobs that we have been using to cover up the fact that we don't actually need to all work 40 hours a week to provide for the entire human race.

              What does "provide for the human race" mean?

            I should have said "... 40 hours a week for fifty years... "

            Whatever you'd like. Work it out for you own needs.
            Mine: A decent house take about 1 man-year to construct and houses about 3 people on average. *4 man-months*
            Currently about 1% of the population works in agriculture. Providing food for 100 man-years would take *one man-year*
            All the gadgets, clothes and stuff, I don't know, but be generous and call it *3 man-years*
            Allow another *3 man-years* for all the food processors, administration, and middlemen.
            Let's allow some more for researchers, doctors, dentists and other services, say *3 man-years*

            If you add up everything between the * * you get about ten man-years.

            So either you work for ten years and retire, or you work ten hours a week for fifty years, or 80% of people never work.

            --
            If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday April 21 2023, @04:23PM (2 children)

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday April 21 2023, @04:23PM (#1302428) Journal
              Given that US labor force participation is actually 47% of all US residents including children we actually are only speaking of 24 man-years not 50. And there's plenty more that needs to be done than the little bit you refer to. It fills out.
              • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Wednesday April 26 2023, @12:14AM (1 child)

                by deimtee (3272) on Wednesday April 26 2023, @12:14AM (#1303172) Journal

                That's really not an argument against my point. My BOTE estimate was 10 years per person and falling. I rounded lifespan to 100 years because I am just using very rough figures. It's not so much about the exact figures, but the directions of the trends. Automation means we need less and less labour. We've covered that up by adding more and more jobs. This time is different because AI is going to take away many of the jobs we added, and mostly fill any new jobs we can come up with.

                47% engagement is already including childhood and unnecessary college and retirement. AI starts taking away more jobs, or more likely, massively improving the efficiency and that 47% will easily fall. it might take a while to get to 10% but it's something that needs to be dealt with before the unemployed and staving peasants start literally eating the rich.

                --
                If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday April 26 2023, @04:52AM

                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 26 2023, @04:52AM (#1303197) Journal

                  That's really not an argument against my point. My BOTE estimate was 10 years per person and falling.

                  That's not your argument. Your estimate ignores 14 years of work per person and increasing.

                  Automation means we need less and less labour.

                  I strongly disagree, because we do more than "need". Wants aren't similarly satisfied.

                  47% engagement is already including childhood and unnecessary college and retirement.

                  None of which counts as work by the usual metrics. Nor does stay at home parenting. But when you do count them, there's a lot of work going on.

        • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:27AM

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:27AM (#1303026) Homepage Journal

          In the new novel I'm writing, Earth is a hell hole (most of the action is in space) with a world-wide dictatorship. Copyrights are perpetual and owned by corporations and art, music, and literature are all produced by AI, except for a few people who learn to play musical instruments despite there not being any money in it. There is no such thing as retirement on Earth.

          But Mars and the larger asteroids are pretty nice, democratically run.

          --
          mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
    • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:42PM

      by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:42PM (#1302196) Journal

      Simple solution: we save humanity by building killer robots that kill everyone who builds killer robots.

      --
      To transfer files: right-click on file, pick Copy. Unplug mouse, plug mouse into other computer. Right-click, paste.
    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Saturday April 22 2023, @01:51AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday April 22 2023, @01:51AM (#1302495) Journal

      Why was it canceled you ask? Because GPT-4 did the job in 30 minutes last week. The junior coders ain't needed no more, and the boss reckons they won't be needed for other menial job neither - and he's right: the chatbot spews out easily fixable code in seconds.

      Thinking about it, this is a lot like the secretary effect. Back before word processing, secretaries were often widespread in offices due to the need for their specialized skills and generally superior speed in handling office functions. You couldn't expect everyone in your office to be able to type efficiently (mechanical and electric typewriters are hard to use well) or keep track of scheduling and mail/phone communications, xeroxing, office supplies, the usual secretary tasks. But as the technologies improved, suddenly all these tasks were moved over and most secretaries went away. I think this had negative consequences similar to those of removing the above interns.

      Highly skilled and expensive labor is diverted to doing mundane, low value things. Soylentils complain all the time about getting interrupted at work by meetings, emails, paperwork, chatty workers, and so on. At least a pool secretary could insulate them from some of that noise.

      I see the same problem here. Interns could be doing the GPT-4 stuff and come up with said reasonable, easily generated code before bothering a senior coder. Instead, that's another half hour each time you're not getting back.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:14PM (7 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:14PM (#1301986)

    >"Rhetoric from AI doomers is not just ridiculous. It's dangerous and unethical,"

    I feel like the AI threat is being intentionally overblown in order to give cover to its actual menace... Sure, a Chatbot isn't going Skynet or Matrix overlord on us tomorrow, but it's a serious inroad into the service economy, one small step for software, one giant leap toward unemployment for a majority of work-capable and work-seeking citizens.

    So much of the recent job gains in work-from-home opportunities for what used to be various types of call-center jobs are directly threatened with heavy RIF percentages by AI. Just replacing phone trees with (competent) AI chat engines could reduce "press 0 for a meatbag" requirements by half, or more.

    Further: we should be embracing AI augmentation in fields like medicine and law. In medicine, the volume of relevant knowledge exceeded the highest levels of meatbag capacity to internalize and quickly utilize decades ago. I _want_ my doctors to be using augmented research techniques when they diagnose my complaints, especially in time-critical situations, preferably in real-time interactive mode while I am present for further examination and feedback. In law: if the opposing side of the adversarial process is using AI and yours is not, you're going to get a rougher shafting than if AI was on your side too. Personally, I feel that AI levels the playing field between highly resourced legal teams and those with less funds to pay the manpower with - which probably means it's doomed to somehow be regulated out of practice. The fields of medicine and law are (intentionally) in higher demand than supply, anything that multiplies the practitioners' capacity should be a good thing for those being served.

    --
    🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:21PM (1 child)

      by mhajicek (51) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:21PM (#1301989)

      Yes, as long as there's a reasonably intelligent and educated meat bag between the AI and the judge.

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:37AM

        by deimtee (3272) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:37AM (#1302035) Journal

        Make the Judge an AI too.

        --
        If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
    • (Score: 3, Funny) by krishnoid on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:26PM

      by krishnoid (1156) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:26PM (#1301990)

      If there's a company that provides a phone tree that actually says "Press 0 for a meatbag," I'm signing up right now.

    • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:43AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:43AM (#1302037)

      I _want_ my doctors to be using augmented research techniques when they diagnose my complaints, especially in time-critical situations, preferably in real-time interactive mode while I am present for further examination and feedback. In law:

      I remember reading a study decades ago where they programmed a medical decision/investigation tree and had it guided by a doctor. It outperformed the *best* diagnosticians by a pretty wide margin, even when paired with an average or below average doctor.
      I think it was quickly squashed by the AMA.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:46PM (1 child)

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:46PM (#1302176) Homepage Journal

      I feel like the AI threat is being intentionally overblown in order to give cover to its actual menace...

      One word, DUNE. [wikipedia.org] Unfortunately, Wikipedia doesn't mention what struck me when I read the book, the jihad against "thinking machines" that had been used to subjugate societies.

      But today's rich already have it, and it's not artificial. It's called "psychologists" and to a billionaire, they're dirt cheap and fit well with the media, all of which they own..

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:51PM

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:51PM (#1302197)

        I feel like most of the major elections since about 1980 have been orchestrated: played by both sides because they know how the electorate will respond based on psychological studies, polls, etc. and the whole presentation is just telling us what we want to hear in a well-studied way.

        --
        🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:42PM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:42PM (#1302682) Journal

      I feel like the AI threat is being intentionally overblown in order to give cover to its actual menace...

      I think the real answer is one word: marketing. Any real menace actually would add to its sexy appeal. Consider a related industry: arms dealer. Will they sell more munitions if they emphasize its safety rather than its lethality? No, it's "you'll kill a lot of bad guys with this."

  • (Score: 4, Informative) by oumuamua on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:49PM (11 children)

    by oumuamua (8401) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @08:49PM (#1301993)

    Just reading Nick Bostrom's Superintelligence, where he thoughtfully analysis the paths to AGI, how fast it will go, can it be controlled and strategies moving forward.
    First version was written in 2014 and yet few people mention him; Credit where credit is due folks!
    Before 2023 it read like scifi, now it reads like prescience wisdom

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:44PM (10 children)

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday April 18 2023, @09:44PM (#1302005)

      >can it be controlled

      This is the really crucial question. At the moment, we don't have much AI in control of our critical meatbag support infrastructure (I hope).

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:51PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:51PM (#1302127)

        This is the really crucial question. At the moment, we don't have much AI in control of our critical meatbag support infrastructure (I hope).

        FTFY. Calling most of this stuff "AI" is an exaggeration

      • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:54PM (8 children)

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:54PM (#1302179) Homepage Journal

        From DUNE: "He who can destroy a thing, controls that thing." Not sure if the quote is exact, but as long as you can pull its plug there's nothing to worry about. Except evil men using AI for evil means.

        Remember, human sentience arises from emotion, and it's nothing but chemistry, if you believe there are no souls. I know I have one, maybe the people who don't believe in souls don't have one of their own? At any rate, good luck designing a fearful computer. Like I said here, [soylentnews.org] it's all trickery, as magical as David Copperfield and works like he works.

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
        • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:53PM (7 children)

          by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @09:53PM (#1302199)

          The problem comes in when you build up to a point that you're dependent on this thing that nobody understands.

          Sure, we all could switch off our cell phones and disconnect our computers from the internet tomorrow - but the price for that would be high, including deaths indirectly caused by the decision to unplug.

          --
          🌻🌻 [google.com]
          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:42PM (4 children)

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @04:42PM (#1302683) Journal

            The problem comes in when you build up to a point that you're dependent on this thing that nobody understands.

            Or you can't pull the plug because you don't have the power to do so.

            • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 23 2023, @09:07PM (3 children)

              by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 23 2023, @09:07PM (#1302703)

              >you can't pull the plug because you don't have the power to do so.

              I am aware of many systems protected by humans from other humans and those other humans are powerless to "switch it off" but only due to protection by other humans.

              Even satellite systems can be relatively easily "decommissioned" by determined humans as many demonstrations over that past decades have shown, and cleaner than that approach is switching off the ground stations.

              Even Victor Apfel (main character in "Press Enter" https://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?41040) [isfdb.org] was able to disconnect from the grid when he wanted to, such tinfoil hat required technology hasn't been demonstrated yet.

              --
              🌻🌻 [google.com]
              • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @10:09PM (2 children)

                by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @10:09PM (#1302707) Journal

                I am aware of many systems protected by humans from other humans

                In other words, that's one way to do it. Genuine AI would be able to come up with more.

                • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Monday April 24 2023, @12:25AM (1 child)

                  by JoeMerchant (3937) on Monday April 24 2023, @12:25AM (#1302722)

                  If the AI is controlling humans, then I guess we are done already.

                  --
                  🌻🌻 [google.com]
                  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Monday April 24 2023, @01:07AM

                    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 24 2023, @01:07AM (#1302726) Journal

                    If the AI is controlling humans, then I guess we are done already.

                    It's probably the first play in the book.

          • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:17AM (1 child)

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:17AM (#1303023) Homepage Journal

            Indeed. Asimov wrote a short story in the 1950s where people had forgotten how to do math because of computers.

            But, if cell phones and the internet stopped tomorrow, life would be worse and people would die, but those people would still be dead id the phones hadn't been in their pockets, and we wouldn't miss the internet any more than people in 1800 missed electricity.

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
            • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:45AM

              by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday April 25 2023, @11:45AM (#1303028)

              > we wouldn't miss the internet any more than people in 1800 missed electricity.

              I tend to believe the "Interstellar" plot line where some people do remember MRIs, space travel, the internet, etc. and tiny pockets of civilization even keep some of the high tech stuff going. Then, of course, the mainstream goes into moon landings were fiction denial mode, because most people will be happier not missing the internet because their mama told 'em it never was a real thing so that's what they choose to believe.

              So, while a few people in 1800 did experiments with electricity, and had an inkling of what was to come, I think people who know what really happened would miss it a great deal more than those who never knew what it could be.

              --
              🌻🌻 [google.com]
  • (Score: 2) by srobert on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:03AM (4 children)

    by srobert (4803) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:03AM (#1302029)

    I think "Artificial Intelligence" is a bit of a misnomer here. We're not dealing with a real intelligence that was created artificially and may achieve consciousness. That's still in the future. What we have now would be more properly termed "Simulated Intelligence". But it's good enough to cut costs by displacing working people, whether they work with their minds or their bodies. We are phasing it in without an accompanying plan to mitigate its detrimental economic effects, and that causes me anxiety. As I said before, it's not "the Terminator" that scares me, meaning the killing machine that looks like Schwarzeneggar. It's the other "terminator", i.e. the one who comes to my cubicle with the pink slip and says, "We've replaced you with new technology. Sorry, but you are terminated."

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:46AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @12:46AM (#1302040)

      We're not dealing with a real intelligence that was created artificially and may achieve consciousness. That's still in the future. What we have now would be more properly termed "Simulated Intelligence".

      That's one way to look at it, but I would say that many of the meatbags I interact with also only have simulated intelligence.

      - ChatGPT

      • (Score: 2) by Zinho on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:29PM

        by Zinho (759) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @03:29PM (#1302140)

        There is considerable overlap between the intelligence of the smartest bears and the dumbest tourists.

        Unidentified Yellowstone park ranger, as found on Bruce Schneier's blog. [schneier.com]

        --
        "Space Exploration is not endless circles in low earth orbit." -Buzz Aldrin
    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:56PM (1 child)

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:56PM (#1302180) Homepage Journal

      Pretty much the same as "almond milk" and far less disingenuous, at least the word "artificial" is there. I didn't know almonds were mammals!

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 20 2023, @12:24AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 20 2023, @12:24AM (#1302211)

        "Milk" is also a term used in chemistry for a solution that has sufficient fine particulates to be opaque but still acts like a liquid.

  • (Score: 2, Disagree) by MIRV888 on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:29AM (4 children)

    by MIRV888 (11376) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:29AM (#1302077)

    When your reference to other human beings is 'meatbag', you have revealed your bias against your fellow man (or woman). You have also shown you are superior in some way (you think). This is a poor way to stage a response. Are people grifting off AI fear? Of course. Does that mean there is no cause for concern? Having a discussion of the ramifications of AI becoming widely available is not just warranted. It's necessary. As has been pointed out, economically this will further destroy the middle class. What do you do when you have way more people than you have jobs? We need to find an answer because its coming soon. Our current economic and cultural systems both say you must dance for your supper. What happens when a huge swath of the population doesn't need to work? Do these people become 'meatbags'?

    • (Score: 2) by Ingar on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:51PM

      by Ingar (801) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @02:51PM (#1302128) Homepage

      I prefer the more precise term "ugly bags of water".

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @04:09PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 19 2023, @04:09PM (#1302147)

      Meatbag is clearly self-deprecation and humor. But if you prefer, we can refer to our fellow citizens as.... *ahem*... "Disgusting", "Miss Piggy", "a dog", etc.

      What happens when a huge swath of the population doesn't need to work seems to be that the layers of management expand to fill the void between people who have resources and people who have abilities. Imagine it like a gigantic AI neural network, if you will. 5 layers? 6 layers? 7 layers? What's the difference.

      Any and every task can be converted into a work order with deliverables passed onto the next layer. Government gets a lot of heat for this but inside every lean efficient corporation is layers and layers of work orders and deliverables and 7 signatures required and mentorship and online training and box ticking and more-effort-needed supervision.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkinson's_law [wikipedia.org]

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday April 23 2023, @06:23PM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 23 2023, @06:23PM (#1302690) Journal

        What happens when a huge swath of the population doesn't need to work

        What does "need" mean here? We already have a huge swath of retired people who don't need to work, for example.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday April 19 2023, @07:01PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday April 19 2023, @07:01PM (#1302182) Homepage Journal

      And you have revealed your ignorance of a fine science fiction movie [wikipedia.org] where the term was coined. "Meatbags" are people who refuse to use robotic surrogates in the movie.

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: 2) by Zinho on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:51PM

    by Zinho (759) on Wednesday April 19 2023, @06:51PM (#1302178)

    For being a self-appointed expert on AI development, Eliezer Yudkowsky seems rather obstructionist towards them being made.

    Cognitohazard warning - reading the spoiler below may cause psychic damage. You have been warned.

    Looks like has convinced himself that he's immune to being tortured by future AIs [rationalwiki.org] if he refuses to aid in their creation. Or, maybe he hasn't and his objections to them being made are a result of his fears. I wish him best of luck on that.
    --
    "Space Exploration is not endless circles in low earth orbit." -Buzz Aldrin
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