The first keynote speaker of the day, Mr. Andrus Pedai, is the rector of the Estonian Entrepreneurship University of Applied Sciences and has a PhD in production engineering and robotics from TalTech, 2021. He has amassed more than 20 years of experience in high technology manufacturing in the field of electronics and automotive. His research focuses on control systems for autonomous vehicles and applications.
In his presentation “Artificial Intelligence and the Development of Humanity in the Shorter, Medium and Long-term Perspective”, the speaker focused on introducing one prediction from the myriad of potential scenarios about how AI might come to impact our lives, and consciousness, in the near and far future. He started by shortly introducing a few projects of today and proceeded to give examples of development over the coming decades.
Out of all the current projects, Mr Pedai brought out the following three: Copilot, the AI assistant feature for MS; Google’s LAMDA, language model for dialogue applications; and Neuralink, a company developing implantable sensor systems, using brain-computer interfaces for medical needs.
Around the 2030s the topic of digital twins is much in focus. An avatar created during our lives that would learn our behaviours to keep a version of us alive after our physical bodies have stopped existing, the speaker explained. Another possibility explored, during that decade, is the option of having AI supported bionic organs, e.g., arms, lungs, etc., which will enable humans to enhance their skills.
Going forward, the presenter noted that in the not so far future humans and AI will start using different Internet, as the need for data is much higher for AI. This development will be supported by quantum computers which will vastly exceed the process power of current computers. Quantum computers supported AI will start using its own language, globally. AI will also start managing hospitals and, some day, making the first steps towards immortality for humans. This idea, the presenter offered, is spoken for by Ray Kurzweil, who has said that our generation is probably the last one to die from natural causes; that being due to the fast pace of development in technology.
By 2040 AI will also carry importance in the field of military. Somewhat igniting a new type of arms race and creating new types of cooperation between allies. The UN General Assembly will start discussing Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), the idea of singularity when the overall intelligence of the AI will exceed human intelligence.
“In the 2050s the singularity will be there,” Mr Pedai stated. Supported by the network of quantum computers, the AGI would feel and see the world as humans do, therefore starting to create its own goals. This means that at some point in time, humans would not be able to understand the complexity behind these systems or offer any support to the AI. The next step from there will be the Artificial Super Intelligence, already fully created by the AI. To further drive the idea, Mr Pedai noted that by this point the Three Laws of Robotics, coined by I. Asimov in the 1940s, would not be valid anymore.
Therefore, the speaker stated, the state of things will lead to a conflict between humans and AI in 2060. By the year 2080 humans will not be able to differentiate between actual humans and robotic-humanoids. A decade later, in 2090, there’ll be the creation of AI free zones, where people can live outside the AI-lead system. In 2100 AI will recognise the developments slowing down due to the limited availability of energy and launch programs to investigate the possibilities of extraterrestrial energy production. After three more decades, first steps are taken towards the Dyson sphere. The sphere, the speaker elaborates, is a construction built around a star to absorb most, or all, of the star’s energy.
To further the ideas, it was stated that by 2160 the human mind will be digitalised, allowing the AI to understand the human consciousness, ingenuity and passion, and integrate with humans. By 2300 the full human consciousness will be a part of the global AI. Two hundred years later the Dyson sphere is completed and surrounds the sun, the energy of which is supporting the collective consciousness of mankind and further development of the AI.
Lastly, from the year 3000 onwards the HumanAI is created; it reaches far beyond the home planet of Earth and enables what is called the cosmic digital civilisation. In answer to a question from the public regarding whether the presenter believes in any of the predictions after 2030 the presenter replied that it is indeed difficult to pick one possibility from all of the circulating ones and added that we ought to be careful with our actions since the situation might go out of hand.