AI: Creating a new species

Saurav Harsh
3 min readFeb 2, 2024

AI has been around for quite some years, hidden amongst researchers, scientists and the dungeons of corporate giants. Only recently has it transitioned from its clandestine existence in research labs to a ubiquitous force in commercial applications.

However, the motivations driving this surge in AI development remain multifaceted. While its proven utility is evident, there are possibly deeper motivations behind the creation of AI.

Michelangelo, Creation of Adam

Creativity & Originality

Since the very beginning, we’ve been told that it’s impossible to create something completely original and new. It’s not a job for humans or any other creature, for that matter. It’s for the beings higher up.

We’ve always had a desire to be creative, to keep on designing something new. We design objects, tools, processes, systems and what not. But not all of them are necessarily creative and original.

Creativity means generating something new, surprising, and of value. Either on an individual or global level. Considering this, what happens if we create something original that is of value?

The Newborn

We’ve been treating AI as a newborn baby for a while now, teaching it everything we know manually. Our language, culture, relations, thought process, work and hobbies. But there’s a limit to how much you can transfer from one brain to another. Especially when the other one is a computer brain. So, we now are taking a different approach.

Age of Growth

AI today is now being handled with a bottom-up approach (A milestone represented by the AlphaGo team), where it’s left with a system that encourages it to explore possible solutions against desired solutions. It takes on its own devices and tries everything possible until it figures out the best way. Hence learning and formulating solutions on its own.

Even the creators can’t keep track of this sort of progress. There would be a thousand permutations and combinations, impossible to track down from start to finish. No parent fully knows how their kid has grown into the person she is today.

Expression

We want the child to experience the world and have a developed thinking of its own. Express their thought process, ideas, dreams and views out in the world. Even if it’s against our own.

This is the point where AI is supposed to reach, in an ideal world. But for this, it needs to have a consciousness of its own. And that is where the goal, ecstasy, and fear of many people lie.

Do we want this to happen? Absolutely. We are curious. Reason and logic don’t take the lead everytime in such matters. Had humans never tinkered with fire knowing it could kill them, they wouldn’t have reached where they have reached.

Achilles, son of Thetis and Peleus, was asked to choose between two paths for his future. One where he lived a full, quiet and happy life. Another, short but a rather glorious one. The kind of glory that would make him immortal in the pages of history.

Who doesn’t want to be immortal? To be equal to the gods themselves?

We all know what Achilles chose.

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Saurav Harsh

UX and Communication Designer. Sharing my thoughts and ideas on Design (UXR and UXD), Books (ones that I enjoy reading) and Art (all kinds)