When I was a little kid, the internet seemed like this enigmatic maze of infinite knowledge, beyond understanding. It was overwhelming. Kind of like when you tried to comprehend the universe, or even universes, or the beginning of all beings, or infinity.
Now that AI/ML is (and frankly has been) creeping into all aspects of our lives, I feel like that kid again, trying to make sense of something that is so much bigger than us.
Eventually, we might get to a point where it’s more graspable and we figure out the most efficient ways to use its power. But what I believe will happen in the meantime and over the next 20 years or so is what I call a factory reset for humanity.
We’v already seen a bit of a reckoning of social media platforms and their impacts on our mental health. There is a very lively debate around shutting down TikTok in US markets. And Twitter has transitioned from being the virtual town hall to an elitist domain marked by selective information and a tinge of eccentricity.
Now that AI is getting further into the mix, it’s becoming harder and harder to tell what’s real. And eventually, it will be so hard that most humans will go back to a life offline. We don’t know who we’re truly interacting with, who we’re getting inspired by and how much we’re being manipulated.
It’ll prompt us to hit the factory reset button on ourselves. What has social media, the internet and truthfully AI given us that really improved our well-being? Yes, you can argue the fact that we’re connected, we can share information faster has a vast amount of benefits. Quite frankly events like the pandemic would have taken a Spanish Influenza a la 1918 type of turn wouldn’t it be for our ability to share things digitally as fast as the click of a button. But most of the benefits are of monetary value and the cost of it all is unfathomable. And that is and will be the same with AI.
There will be a subset of people who will prefer that artificial reality from the one we consider natural or authentic reality. The ones who have a hard time finding true connections. We all know it can be incredibly challenging to find that sometimes. But I would still argue that we’re all longing for a factory reset because...
To be happy for a lifetime, plant a garden and read a book.
Just a thought.