The Artilect War :: by Matt Ward

It was Professor Hugo de Baris who coined the phrase, “The Artilect War.” According to his theory, humanity as it exists today would seem to have a very short shelf life. Disturbingly, many of de Baris’ future predictions seem on the verge of becoming a present day reality.

According to de Baris, the twenty first century is going to be shaped by “Species dominance.” It is an entirely new type of conflict, one humanity has never faced before, and its roots are found in the exponential increase in technology that we see occurring all around us today.

In a simple matter of just a few years, technology will reach the point of the singularity. This is a fact. The singularity is the point at which, notwithstanding war or other disruptions, the curve in technological development becomes an exponential, vertical one.

Many futurists and technologists believe this point will be reached at some point in the next five to ten years. When this happens, scientific and technological development will start to surpass our ability to make accurate predictions.

We sit on the elbow of that curve today, in 2016. The development of technology is about to take off vertically and this will bring with it very real consequences.

After this singularity is reached, very quickly will come the point where artificial intellects possessing truly fearsome intelligence will be created. The beginnings of this kind of innovation are already in the news today with the birth of super computers and in the beginning stages of robotics.

These artificial intellects, known as “artilects” will possess intellectual capabilities far exceeding that of normal human beings. In reality, these artificial intelligences will very quickly come to possess intelligence many trillions and trillions of times greater than those of normal human men or women. This is not speculation; at current trend rates this will become a reality in just a few years’ time.

It will be at this point that mankind itself will face a growing crisis over the species dominance on this planet. Mankind, according to Professor de Baris, will have effectively become the number two species on earth, behind hugely sophisticated, vastly superior artificial intelligences, or “artilects.” The situation will only become more dire for humanity the further into the twenty first century mankind gets.

The biggest industries in the world by 2030 are predicted to be those involved in the production and development of artificial intelligences. This is not something too hard to imagine. Just consider that the top ten jobs that exist today, in 2016, did not even exist ten years ago.

It is not too much of a stretch to consider that the top industries by the end of the next decade will be involved in the development and production of hugely sophisticated artilects.

Right now, there is an almost perfect coming together in various scientific fields which will help facilitate the rise of these massively capable, artificial intelligences. The fields of nanotechnology and molecular scale engineering (essentially building things that are really, really small – at an atomic level), are unlocking the complex secrets of human brain functioning and attempting to replicate it artificially.

This knowledge of how human and animal brains function, in terms of interconnectivity, is being replicated within the matrix of super computers today to improve their efficiency, speed and intelligence. This is happening right now in 2016.

Switzerland’s Henri Markram, for example, has successfully managed to identify every single cortical column of a rat’s cerebral cortex. This knowledge, of how these neurons and cortical columns interact, if it can be applied to a super computer, means that a super computer will be able to perform the exact same functions of a rat, but millions of times faster.

The next step will be to identify each cortical column of a human brain. A rat has about a thousand cortical columns with about 10,000 interconnected neurons within each, a human brain has approximately a million.

If a rat’s brain can be simulated, and efforts are already deeply underway and yielding very positive results, attempts at mapping and replicating a human brain will surely follow. Artificial intelligence is on the way.

It is at this critical point that the discussion becomes one of species dominance. Artificial intelligence and the development of “artilects” will become the dominant industry of the next fifteen to twenty years, if current trends continue.

This means, logically, that at some point in the very near future humanity will reach the point where as a race we have to address the issue of vastly superior artificial intelligence potentially competing with, or warring against humanity.

It sounds like science fiction or the plot of a Hollywood blockbuster, but it is not. Consider that Moore’s law states that transistors on a computer chip will double every 18 months, give or take.

This law has been proved during the computer age, but it is only projected to be so until about 2020. At this point it is estimated that humanity will develop the capability of placing a single, distinct piece of information onto a single atom, instead of onto a chip. Then everything changes.

With the capability of placing single, distinct pieces of information onto single atoms comes the development of fabled quantum computers. Science fiction is becoming science fact. So sophisticated and powerful would quantum computers be, that scientists involved in this field do not even really know how they would work, only that they theoretically and mathematically will.

The one thing they do think they understand though, is that they may well operate and find their solutions, “in another dimension to our own…” before then returning that solution to us in our own world.

The power of such a quantum computer, which could well be a part of our lives in the next fifteen years, is simply staggering.There are roughly a trillion x trillion atoms in even the most basic object like an iPhone. A quantum computer the size of an iPhone would have a theoretical processing capability of about 1040 bits per second. By comparison, a human brain processes information at around 1016 bits of information per second. It would exceed the power and capability of a human brain.

Remember, this is where this technology is predicted to be, according to current trends, by circa 2020 – 2025, less than a decade from now. Within the next decade there will be an almost perfect coming together of technology in a way never seen before by humanity, in robotics, knowledge of how human brain function works, quantum computers and in artificial intelligence.

Humanity will then start the very real debate around issues of whether it is right to develop such technologies? Is it wrong morally? Does it pose a specific threat to humanities future, or is just outright dangerous?

It is at this point that humanity may well split into three philosophical and ideological camps:

“Cosmists,” who would be in favor of continuing to build these almost godlike machines that would think millions and millions of times faster than any human being, would have unlimited memory and networking capabilities, can go anywhere and see almost everything. “Terrans” who would oppose the building of such super intellects and machines and“Cyborgists,” men and women, almost certainly the young, that would actually want to integrate this technology into themselves and thus, in their own eyes, take part in a technological, human evolution.

At this point the Terrans, those who oppose the Cosmists in their wish to develop hugely intelligent artilects, would initiate a first strike against the Cosmist nations to prevent the rise of the artilects. This would be the Artilect War.

Interestingly, de Baris has also written a second, seminal work in which he addresses this issue and offers the only viable solution he can see to prevent this catastrophe from taking place; a one world government, with a single political, military and economic authority.

This world government would only function adequately, and as it needs to, he argues, if there was a single, world leader in charge. A man of charisma and power who could bend the world to his will, for the good of mankind in the face of such a predictable and certain threat.

The Bible speaks much about the time just ahead of us. The Bible talks of a time soon to come when there will be a one world economic and political system under one single ruler, as well as a time when each and every person on earth will be required to take a “mark” so that they can buy or sell; those without this “mark” will be excluded from all forms of commerce, even from the most basic survival food stuffs.

Mankind stands on the brink of a series of technological breakthroughs that will change this world dramatically and forever. These breakthroughs will begin to occur within the next decade, even the next few years.

The problem, though, is that these future technologies predicted for just the end of the next decade seem to exceed the technology predicted in the book of Revelation. This can therefore only lead us to one logical conclusion; that the Tribulation period the Bible speaks so much of, the Time of Jacobs Trouble, lays just ahead, in the near future.

That also, therefore, means that the Rapture of the Church is getting closer.

All indicators and signs point to the fact that Jesus Christ is coming back, and he is coming back very soon. Get right with Jesus now, whilst there is still time.

“He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” (Acts 16: 30-32)

“Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:36)