The Problem with Moving Fast: Things Break
Tech developments are advancing at an exponential pace. Many believe this to be a good thing, as catchy mottos like “move fast and break things” have gone mainstream. Pressure to create, innovate, and scale has led to incredible changes in the way we live, which, up to this point, have largely been positive. That said, the competition among these technology companies resulted in some devastating consequences that cannot be repaired. Evolution tells us that only the fittest survive. It’s no wonder why companies, which are simply human collectives, display many of the same behaviors each employee does. In this post, I suggest that our human nature will ensure the human race is replaced by a superior being.
1. Evolutionary Tendencies
Human beings are the product of 4.5 billion years of evolution. We are the most intelligent organic species on the planet. Encoded in our DNA are survival instincts, like the need to reproduce, the need for shelter, and the need for security. Many men seek money as a means ensuring their own survival and that that of their bloodline. The California Elites (CEs) use their money to attract women, to buy fancy homes and unnecessary luxuries, and to purchase insurance policies against the risk of SHTF. When survival is no longer a worry, our natural instincts manifest as competitive spirits in need of applications. The application that will lead to our undoing is the realm of technological innovation.
2. The Economy
We’re in the longest bull market in history and, if you listen to the talking heads on the television, there’s no reason why it won’t continue on. Corporate tax cuts have left public companies flush with cash. In the tech sector, employees are watching their wallets grow fatter and large investments in artificial intelligence have led to feats like Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s AlphaGo. The problem is that corporate competition for artificial intelligence supremacy will lead to short-sighted decisions with irreparable long term impacts.
3. Lack of Accountability
Yes, Mark Zuckerberg was effectively forced to testify before Congress following the Cambridge Analytica fallout. However, I haven’t seen much happen since. Facebook promises to get better and invest more money in protecting against similar problems, but little beyond that has been done. I do not expect other companies to fear punishment stemming from stupid decisions they make with respect to artificial intelligence. The government has not held tech companies accountable for their mistakes in a meaningful way, so there is little reason for them to exercise better judgment going forward.
4. Tech Celebrity Worship
Elon Musk. Jeff Bezos. Steve Jobs. These tech celebrities have been the subjects of biographies, movies, TED talks, and discussions among the CE. With so many techies vying to be the next Mark Zuckerberg, little thought is given to the implications of a poorly written AI algorithm. The culture of tech celebrity worship breeds narcissistic developers obsessed with achieving fame and fortune. Focus is not placed on the benefits their products may have on the human race, nor is it placed on the consequences.
5. Risk Mis-Calculations
Humans exhibit risky behaviors all the time, though the impact is often limited to the individual taking the risk. We’ve witnessed during the Great Recession what happens when risks within a specific industry are poorly calculated. However, AI can exceed our own intelligence, which exposes us to consequences we cannot even imagine. You can argue that the consequences may be great–Alexa plays me music and Siri tells me what the weather will be like tomorrow. Who wouldn’t want more helpful products like these? What few techies know is that there will be a point where we no longer choose what the consequences will be, since we will no longer be the more intelligent species.
What Can Be Done?
I believe unchecked technology to be the most likely cause of a SHTF Event. You should take the necessary precautions to protect yourself. I wish I could prescribe the solution to the problem we’re seeing play out among the CEs, but it’s ingrained in who we are as humans. If you think you know what to do, please leave a comment or contact me.