May 4, 2014, Sunday. I was just reading an article by Stephen Hawking on A.I., artificial intelligence. It seems that Mr. Hawking has of late taken to publishing his opinion on more issues than he is qualified and the media jumps to disseminate his ponderings as fact because they think he is the smartest man in the world and that everything he says is dogma. They forget that his area of expertise is THEORETICAL physics, a practice more akin to science fiction than reality.
He now has extended his opinion to predicting the future of mankind. His thoughts on A.I. are indeed interesting and any Hollywood producer worth his salt would jump on Mr. Hawking's ideas and make a good movie about machines enslaving human kind. Yes, I know it has already been done and Hollywood has already blown holes in Mr. Hawking's theory. In my humble opinion his theory leaves out a few very important elements which are very human. Machines may indeed out-think humans in the future, but machines will never be able to out-human humans.
Einstein pointed out that insanity is the repeated performance of an action expecting a different outcome. This is a very human condition that any A.I. would never ever be able to deal with. We often call this human character trait perseverance. A.I. would perform an action and failing in the expected outcome, cease. This is the difference between humans and machines. Humans have a soul. The power of the soul cannot be fathomed either by machines nor, evidently, Stephan Hawking. Humans will always be superior because of the soul.
We were reminded of this yesterday when we received a phone call from an old friend who had been trying to pass the test to get into a nursing program. She had tried several times to pass this test and someone else might have given up. But she had faith both in herself and in God's grace to bless her with "another chance." Faith is a gift given to just us from God that we can either accept or reject. Candle, our friend, accepted the gift and used it; a character trait certainly to be admired. WAY TO GO, CANDLE!