The Rise of Machines!

IBM has just announced that it has developed a computer chip that mimics the human brain. The Cognitive Computing Project to develop these chips lasted six years with funding by IBM and a 40 million dollar grant from DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). So it is clear that such “human’ microchips are to be used in defense applications…oh joy! The objective is to create a computer that can’t simply carry out the tasks already programmed into it, but analyze the external factors and spontaneously change its behavior. In other words the ability to adapt to new types of information that are not programmed in advance.

In 2009 the project was able to simulate a cat’s brain and 1% of a human’s cerebral cortex. We wonder how humanity will react should extraterrestrial life be discovered, I wonder how we will react to a machine that can think and act like a human. Will we soon discover that we are no longer the smartest “species” on the planet and when we do how will we react, especially if such “species” are “working” in the military establishment?


About oms1959
Thank you for visiting my blog. Let me start with a confession. I am not what might be described as a "man of letters". Eloquence was never my strong suite so I ask you from the start to forgive my rather clumsy diction and writing style. I was born in 1959 to a Muslim Palestinian father and Christian English mother. The formative years of my childhood were spent between the Middle East (Saudi Arabia) and England...Wimbledon to be precise. This cultural dichotomy presented me with significant pressures and challenges particularly growing up the UK to the backdrop of the political turbulence in the Middle East and the oil crisis of 1973. In school my brother and I, being the only pupils of Middle Eastern decent, were the targets of bullying and prejudice. Our alienation at school was further compounded by my father’s refusal for us to attend religious education classes at school for fear of Christian indoctrination. Looking back my experience in school resulted in me being rather reserved and private, but provided me with an inner strength and confidence that has helped me to this day. In 1977 I opted to read chemistry at Queen Elizabeth College, University of London. I chose this college thinking that it had a large contingent of Arab students. Unfortunately I was one of only two Arab students in a college with a large and active Jewish Students Society. My proudest achievement during university was to win a debate against the Jewish Society on “The Question of Palestine”, confirming that Palestinians do exist separate from other Arabs in a country that was called Palestine. That said I would like to state that I am not anti-Jewish (I do not say anti-Semitic, since being Arab I am a Semite). I am however anti-Zionist. The formative years of my career were spent in the chemical industry working for a global US based multinational. This experience provided me the opportunity to live and work in many locations in Europe and the Middle East. Subsequently in 2003 I spent eighteen months in Shanghai China, which I found to be a fascinating experience, witness to the greatest industrial and economic developments of the 20th century. Since 2004 I have been living in Dubai, another developing high growth region, personally experiencing the pains of the 2008 financial crisis, resulting from a poorly timed real estate investment. I am currently working as an executive search consultant, a role that I enjoy as it engages me in meeting a wide variety of senior leadership in a wide spectrum of organisations. I consider myself a 52 year old student of human nature, still learning about how we engage with each other personally and collectively. If you have a passion to debate where we are headed and how we should navigate the our way through social, cultural, economic, environmental and environmental landscape for the long term benefit of humanity then join the discussion.

One Response to The Rise of Machines!

  1. Mr WordPress says:

    Hi, this is a comment.
    To delete a comment, just log in, and view the posts’ comments, there you will have the option to edit or delete them.

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