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Artificial Intelligence: The Birth of Zeus

by | Sep 25, 2023 | Technology | 0 comments

“I believe that is the last connection that has to be done,” the professor said, as he leaned back from the work he had been doing on the computer – a computer he was certain would be the mastermind of all computers – perhaps, even the human race. “It’s okay to turn it on now” he added.

After observing the professor’s work, the lab assistant swiveled her chair around to face the control panel now in front of her. She took hold of the large lever in the middle of the panel and said, “This is the one, right?”

“Yes, that’s the one,” her mentor confirmed.

With anticipation, the lab assistant pulled the lever toward her. Instantly, panel lights began to flash in a colorful array of flickering bulbs that protruded from this enormous labyrinth of technological engineering.

After several seconds of random flashing, the lights began to synchronize and soon the alternating flashes became so rapid the naked eye could no longer detect the blinking and began to view the bulbs as fully illuminated. A slight hum emanated from the glowing device, but it was barely audible to the human ear.

“Now, my dear, it is ready. Flip the data entry switch to fill it with every known fact of mankind,” the professor instructed with a sly smile.

Reaching out her trembling hand, the lab assistant extended her index finger and pushed a small rubber-tipped toggle switch forward. A new set of lights started flashing, mimicking the previous set. The humming increased to a quick crescendo and then dropped back to a low steady tone. As the flickering of the lights slowed, a larger red bulb in the middle of the panel lit up and glowed steadily. The huge instrument seemed as if it had ceased operating altogether.

“Is Zeus all right?” the young lab assistant asked.

“Oh yes, it is doing just fine,” the professor said. “It is now absorbing everything there is to know and soon it will start assimilating that data into, what we refer to as – thought.”

“So, it will actually think,” the lab assistant said, pushing her chair back, rolling on its castors. She turned to the professor. “Do you really believe it will be able to do that?”

“Only time will tell, my dear,” the professor said, gazing at the complex of levers, buttons, and lights. “We’ll know that all the data has uploaded once that red light goes out. That’s when we will be able to test Zeus’s cognitive skills.

“As for now, let’s get some dinner. Over the next few days we’ll keep an eye on that red light.”

Several days later, the professor sat next to the machine he affectionately called Zeus, scribbling down notes when the academy’s head administrator and a high-ranking military officer strode into the office.

“Professor, I would like to introduce you to General Slaughter,” the administrator said. The professor turned in his chair and rose to his feet extending his hand.

“Pleased to meet you, general,” the professor said, noting the stars lined along the epaulets of the general’s uniform jacket. “To what do I owe this pleasure?”

“Your intelligent machine, of course,” the general said. “I can tell you the military has a definite interest in what you’re developing here.”

To be continued …