Will machines define life and politics? Five reasons why this is possible
What will the civilisation of the future be like and why can humans surrender the power over the world to machines?
We were predicted as early as the late 20th century in iconic films — The Terminator and Matrix (though these weren’t the first compositions about this theme) — that machines would run the world. In the 21st century, many seriously joined the voice of fantasy writers and cinematographers — from Facebook critics to supporters of the elimination of 5G networks. Vladislav Surkov who wrote a policy article where he predicted that machines would soon define our life and politics joined this choir. In a column, Anna Svirina, vice rector of science and development of TISBI Management University, reflects on what prerequisites our society has for this.
The future determined by machines makes some of us happy and others fear. But it isn’t hard to notice that we use automatic ratings, recommendations, search systems more and more. So has a step towards such a future already been made? There are already prerequisites for this. I will enumerate five factors that, I think, speak about the possibility of the arrival of “people-free democracy” Surkov writes about.
- Factor No. 3: humans are inclined to wrongly assess the probability of events
Experimental economy, research on casino players’ behaviour and a study of consumers’ irrational behaviour gave us approximately identical answers to the question if humans act rationally. And the answer is often negative.
We tend to overestimate the probability of unlikely events and underestimate the probability of those that will almost certainly happen. We too often consider insignificant things important and, in contrast, disregard serious things.
The last 50 years of research have proven that a rational person whose existence the economy is based on doesn’t exist, as we make decisions given our perception of reality, which rarely coincides with the reality itself. Machines are free of this disadvantage. And where a human can luckily guess at the 100th attempt the machine will accurately calculate at the first one. So who will win in this case?