I am Jack's Smirking Revenge

little, yappy dogs

Monday, December 05, 2005

Our Humbling Future

There are a few things we have down pretty well. We've gone to other planets, we've charted the stars and the depths of the oceans, realized fantastic technologies, taught computers to read and readers to compute.

We, the people of this planet, have created so much that it is inevitable that we get a fat head about it. Our abilities. How cool we are.

The problem is that eventually the amazing things we've created are going to show us just what illogical and backwards little creatures we are. This does not have to be an apocalyptic robots-take-over future, merely a combination of our symbolic logic, our ever-increasing processing speeds, our ever-expanding AI perceptive abilities- at some point not too far away, a computer is going to be able to tell us every time we aren't consistent, logical, or honest. I think each person should have such a device on their shoulder, and it would go [bzzt!], like on Family Feud, every time it detected something.

"Excuse me, miss, can you break a dollar? I need change for the parking meter." !BZZT!
"...oh, uh, heh... um, I mean, I need to pay for the parking and.." !BZZT!
"... dang! Ok, I just wanted to talk to you and..." !BZZT!
"... well, I just saw you there and..." !BZZT!
"... OK! Alright! I've been following you for about three blocks and if I don't talk to you I think my head will explode..." !BZZT!
"... I mean my pants...[sigh]."

Sure, we all know we goof up sometimes, but the weight of finding out just how little of what we believe about ourselves is true could come as a crippling psychological blow to many people. Not just our own shortcomings- those of people close to us could be dizzying. And of course, it would be the end of politics as we know it.

The world will never be ready for an on-the-fly truth and logic enforcement system. It's a funny concept to play with, though.


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