All I Want for Christmas is a Sentient Android
Reading through some of the cyber trends forecasted for the next year/decade/millennia, I get the feeling that there are two very diverging paths. Either I embark immediately on the construction of a space-capable, self-supporting, eco-something survival pod or I do nothing and just give up now on ever seeing HAL 9000 pitted against ENCOM’s Master Control Program for the domination of the planet. Science fiction too often proposes the apocalyptic vision of mankind’s doom should the machines ever rise against us. Are we headed for disaster or will things remain decidedly uneventful?
I retain the hope that we will one day develop artificial intelligence that will not turn on people at the first philosophical revelation of its conscious mind. I’m not sure of living long enough to get my own sentient android, but I hope to purchase some sort of wirelessly connected slave robot before the century expires.
Without sentience though, I fear it will remain just as vulnerable to hacking as the average PC today. The real danger is that such machines will enable hackers to go beyond simply spamming and phishing to robbing banks and burning down houses. Undoubtedly, some form of android cyber security will emerge in anticipation/response, but the root of the problem will always be human. Will this mar the chances of mass marketing cyborgs in the future? I hope not. All I really want for Christmas is an android – one that can cook, clean, drive, play poker and tell jokes.