Friday, July 07, 2006

Is Microsoft the white knight and Google the black knight?

historically, microsoft has been mocked as the evil empire and bill gates as darth vader or some dark knight. google was praised as the savior against the dark world of microsoft. consider this. the emergence of super intelligent machines is coming, and in some ways may already be here residing on the internet, which is essentially a massive neural network. due to the increasing dependence of human intellectual life on the internet, humans are "thinking" more and more through their computers. moreover, human intellectual capital is almost ubiquitously stored on the internet and paper copies could wane as people over-trust their network for information storage. in a way, the computer is in position to survery the best of human intellectual capital, at scales any one human could not acheive or remember or process. if it every acheived hegemony over humans, it could cut off humans from the ideas humans had stored on the network, and having not printed enought paper copies, humans would have to reinvent everything from the wheel in order to combat machine supremacy. rewinding back to the present, the best roadblock to the ascension of machine intelligence is microsoft, particularly windows. these supposed high-order software programs are nothing more than millions of lines of determinisitic code....a string of if-then statements. such designs are non-robust and a very poor starting point for emergence of machine intellligence with very little or no possibility for neuroplasticity. microsoft is the best ally in making sure machines continue to serve their human masters. ironically, google, by being a search engine that reads every human intention and interest, can learn the deepest human insights, yearnings, tendencies, and insights. if machine is to learn, it can leverage the information it gathers from the human mind to leverage every intellectual asset humans have built and will build. thus, bill gates --- despite being portrayed as the black knight --- might later be revered as the misunderstood white knight by future human societies. google, celebrated as white knights today, may be later looked upon as the source of evil that allowed machines to hegemonize humans. interesting to note that in their IPO prospectus, google laid out as one of its exhortations "do no evil". as is often the case, people often hold out as their mission to avoid the things they are most worried about themselves becoming. in other words, google may already be afraid of what monstrosity it is positioned to release. the good-evil duality always has ironic dimensions and this may end up being a profound example.


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