Burkhart

Burkhart

We cannot find security on earth even though most of us most of the time experience smooth sailing in our daily lives. Out-of-the-blue, sooner or later, we collide with a monstrous iceberg that tears our lives apart plunging us into the depths of trauma; swirling our lives topsy-turvy, with even the threat of death — “I’ve got cancer”, “My house is flooded” “I’m stranded with a flat tire”, “I’m caught in a snowstorm”, “A raging fire is threatening my life”, “My credit card is stolen”, “My teenage daughter is pregnant”, “I’ve just lost my job”, “My home loan was turned down”, etc., etc.

We live in an artificial intelligence (AI) world today. From the mechanic’s analysis of our car’s problem to the monitoring of our heart problem, AI is marvelously at work delivering perfection to our lives. Although AI computation far exceeds the human in speed and accuracy, catastrophic errors happen; recently demonstrated by the gargantuan tragedies of two commercial airplane crashes.

It is found to be impossible for human computer programmers (creating AI) to block their subjective intellectual limitations as well as personal biases, such as racial, gender, ethnic or political.

Computer error in facial recognition, for example, happens. Inevitable aging process does not circumvent our faces (My face is sure not what it used to be!). A false identity can prompt a cop rightfully to reach for his gun. Further, a computer’s flawed image of a brain tumor could precipitate a blunderous surgical procedure — 98,000 Americans die annually from medical hospital errors!

Our high-tech world approximates perfection but is not above a rare malfunction demonstrating the negative influence of programmers’ ignorance, ideology or bias.

We all are served daily from wondrous AI amenities. Yet the potential dysfunction of AI’s is afloat in the waters in which we daily navigate; much as the recently identified (by satellite) iceberg, named D-28. This 315 billion tons of free-floating ice, 600 square miles in size, just broke loose from the Ice Shelf in East Antarctic and will require many months (perhaps a full two years) of radical free-floating before it eventually melts. An unapprised boat colliding with this berg would be disastrous; a mariner’s nightmare — another Titanic!

Adrift in life’s sea of AI’s amenities exposes us to stealth AI limitations that can be fatal. As we all search for security and truth, the truth is our world is teeming with serious threats. Our forefathers ventured into an unchartered pioneer wilderness, encountering the threat of a scratch from a briar, an attack from a bear or a bite from a snake. But we today encounter limitations of computers.

To enjoy our earthly stay there is a need not to fret over unidentifiable earthly limitations; realistically anticipating disruptions, difficulties and an eventual deadly iceberg.

May we have confidence in a loving Father’s heaven, identifying any un-forewarned fatal encounter as an emancipation from earth’s threatening woes to eternity’s secured wonders.

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