Surviving Mergers – The Risks of Human AI Integration

Would You Survive an AI-Powered Merger?

It is a very popular idea these days that humans and AI should merge. The idea is presented as both a way to prevent humans from being obsoleted by AI at work, as well as a means to achieve superintelligence and immortality. Elon Musk, for example, recently said that humans could avoid being outmoded in the workplace by AI by having \”some sort of merger between biological intelligence and machine intellect.\”1 In order to achieve this, he founded a new company, Neuralink. Its first goal is to create \”neural lacing,\” an injectable mesh which connects the computer directly to the brain. The AI-based neural lace is supposed to enable data from the brain to be wirelessly transmitted to digital devices and to the cloud.

Transhumanists often view uploading as the key to mind-machine merging.

We need to look beyond the hype to determine if these enhancements are beneficial. The public, policymakers and AI researchers need to have a clearer understanding of the issues at hand. If AI is not conscious, for example, then you could substitute a microchip in the brain parts responsible for consciousness and end up as a conscious person. Philosophers call this a \”zombie\”, a nonconscious replica of your former self. Even if microchips replaced the parts of your brain that are responsible for consciousness, you would still be at risk. The person you are may not be the same after too many changes. Unbeknownst, each person who enhances their lives may end up dying in the process.


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