Just What We Will Know

Beware, artificial intelligence is coming.

In one of my books, a woman is doing battle with the authorities.  She is convinced of something the police tell her is impossible.  Actually, I guess it is not a new plot.  However, as artificial intelligence becomes more intelligent, it also becomes more and more plausible, possible and likely.

Today, there are computers that can imitate our voices to the point we cannot recognize them from our own.  Images, even videos can be done very convincingly, to the point we will doubt our own memories.  We will be convinced that we were in places we’ve never been.

One day, you may receive a phone call that you will be convinced came from your son or daughter that is completely generated from 1s and 0s.  It is a good reason to tell your child to remember a word or two that can be used that only the two of you know.  Hopefully, you’ll never need it, but you might.

The computers will be able to convince us that people have done things they didn’t, uttered things that were never said, signed things we never signed.  We are entering a brave new world in which we must doubt that which we hear or see.  Unless we can hear or see that person who physically stands in front of us, the image just might be a lie, a deception, or a sham.

Indeed, you just might be put in the place of the woman in my book where you will know something, and no one will believe you.

Naturally, those most susceptible will be those with deep pockets.  The purpose of the ruse will be to deceive the rich out of their riches.  However, it will not stop there.  It will be used to make politicians appear to say or do things they never said or did.  It will make people holding positions in solid companies appear to flip their lids.  It might even be used to convince folks they were in places they weren’t and all will believe because they will see the evidence on the video.

Of course, that can also work the other way.  A murderer can use it to establish an alibi.  A congressman can use it to pretend a visit he never makes.  A horrible event never occurred.

I guess, to some degree, we are already there.  I mean how many know of the burning and looting a short season ago.  How many remember 9/11.  Go ahead.  Ask someone who was behind the destruction of the trade towers and the death of about 5,000 people whose only guilt was that they went to work that day.  Already, the media has done what they can to rewrite that history.

Given a little artificial intelligence and they will be able to convince anyone that anyone did anything.

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