Giovedì, 29 Ottobre 2020 17:55

Tales of tomorrow: The brave new world of artificial

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51X2XvNj2GLA collection of short stories about various aspects of artificial intelligence (AI) as this is presented today by best-selling authors like Ray Kurzweil, Nick Bostrom, Mark Tegmark and others. Tales of Tomorrow takes a critical, and sometimes ironical, look at AI projects like the uploading brains onto computers, the pursuit of immortality, the creation of conscious robots, brain microchips....But this isn’t a book against AI as a whole.

Rather, it aims to make us aware of the practical and philosophical implications for our lives of current AI research and ideas. In particular it takes a stand against some of the more extreme AI claims, such as "we are only the software"—namely, our selves, our personalities, are simply the algorithms of our brain, and our bodies merely a mortal, fleshly support. Some of the stories also focus on the ecological problems of our world today. Since the future of our planet and the development of AI are now inextricably interwoven, can AI help us preserve the world from decay and destruction?

The above-mentioned authors tend to answer positively, whereas these stories may well instill a few doubts in readers’ minds. Of course, AI is here to stay. It will be an integral part of our future and cannot be abolished or denied. But it does need to be purged of its naïve and fundamentalist extremes.


Pier Luigi Luisi

Pier Luigi received his scientific education at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa, Italy. In 1970, he became professor at the Institut für Polymere at the ETH-Zürich and since 2006 he is part of the biology department of the University of Roma Tre. As a biochemist, he pioneered an active research in the self-organization of synthetic and biological systems, the origin of life, and semi-synthetic cellular systems (the so-called "mininal life"). Interested in the interface between science and humanities, in 1985 he founded Cortona week, legacy to this Todi-week, and participated, in 1987, to the foundation of Mind and Life in Dharamsala, India, with Francisco Varela and the Dalai Lama.

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