Villain Chat: Artificial Intelligence

Fangirls, if movies have taught me anything, it’s not to trust artificial intelligence.  From The Terminator to Ultron, robots are damn dangerous, and even more so when they can think for themselves.



In The Terminator, Skynet is there to spark a nuclear holocaust.  Nope.  That’s really not something humanity needs, to say the least.  I know a little bit more about Ultron than the Terminator, though, so I’d rather dive right into that.

So.  Ultron.  Ultra is created using Hank Pym’s brain (or Jarvis), both ways lead to a robot being able to think for himself.  Sure, Jarvis is a safe dude, but Ultron takes his knowledge and uses it for evil.  Regardless of how Ultron comes to be, he does, and he’s here to help save the world.  But the thing is, humanity is flawed.  The best way to save the world, then, is to cleanse it.  That falls in with the “for the greater good” nonsense that Hitler was into.

All that being said, there are some AIs that are cool.  Jarvis, of course, is the rad helper to Tony Stark.  There’s also WALL-E, the garbage robot from Disney & Pixar’s movie of the same name.  WALL-E wasn’t created to think for himself; he was built to follow orders on cleaning up trash, that’s why even after everyone else has left earth, he’s still trucking along, doing his job.  But when he starts to develop feelings and stray from his programming (when he meets EVE), he starts using his artificial intelligence.  But he’s still not super dangerous.  Sure, he frees the broken robots from broken robot jail, but that wasn’t all that dangerous.  In the same movie though, there’s AUTO, the autopilot who takes over the ship and keeps humans from returning to earth.


There’s also R2-D2, who is a droid who was created to help out on ships.  And that’s really what he did.  He did end up in some trouble throughout the Star Wars films (and from the looks of the trailers for the 7th installment, he’s still up to his mischievousness), but he wasn’t dangerous.

So it’s definitely possible for artificial intelligence units to not be dangerous, but the idea can really freak me out sometimes.  I had a professor who always told us that technology is what will eventually destroy us, and even though it’s a bit crack-pot-ish, I’m scared he’s right.














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