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Artificial Intelligence

Cognitive Obsolescence in the Age of AI?

A Personal Perspective: AI puts human cognition on the chopping block.

Art: DALL-E/OpenAI
Source: Art: DALL-E/OpenAI

Throughout history, the question has been the same. What's new?

This relentless pursuit of the "new and improved" has been the cornerstone upon which societies have built empires, economies, and entire epochs. Yet, woven into the fabric of this defining human process is an inescapable pattern of obsolescence, a byproduct of innovation's insatiable appetite for the future. Historically, this cycle of renewal and redundancy has been accepted, even celebrated, as a natural progression of technological advancement. Tools, technologies, and tenets of the past were often relegated to the annals of history, their obsolescence a testament to human ingenuity's forward march.

However, there's something else going on here. As we push into The cognitive age, powered by the formidable engines of artificial intelligence and large language models, the very essence of what it means to be human is being called into question. The rapidly emerging capabilities of AI are not merely enhancing human thought; they are beginning to replicate, and in some instances, surpass it. This extraordinary shift presents a new twist to our journey of innovation and transformation that places humans in the crosshairs of obsolescence.

Take a breath and think about that.

The advent of AI and LLMs represents an almost unthinkable shift in the landscape of human intellect and creativity. These cognitive technologies, with their almost boundless capacities, are not just augmenting human intelligence but are also forging new frontiers of thought and creativity, previously believed to be the exclusive domain of humanity. This fusion of silicon and synapse is redefining the boundaries of what is possible and rewriting the context in which humans and human cognitive fit into the equation.

Yet, amidst this journey into the cognitive frontier, there lies a palpable undercurrent of concern. The encroachment of AI into realms of human cognition instigates a look within—an existential introspection. What does it mean to be human in an age where our thoughts, creativity, and even emotions can be mirrored, and potentially outmoded, by algorithms and artificial neural networks? This question, simmering in the subconscious of the collective human psyche, surfaces in the discourse of scientists, philosophers, and laypersons alike, igniting debates that seem to ping pong between utopian visions and dystopian fears.

The concept of our own cognition becoming a relic in the face of AI capabilities is both intriguing and unnerving. It compels us to ponder the essence of human uniqueness and the value we ascribe to our own intellectual faculties. As machines begin to replicate and surpass human thought processes, we are prompted to question the very foundations of our identity and place in the cosmos. This is not just a technological revolution; it is a philosophical odyssey that demands us to explore the depths of our collective psyche and the potentialities of our future. In this new cognitive era, our greatest challenge and opportunity lie not in the external world of silicon and circuits, but in the internal landscape of human consciousness and its boundless possibilities.

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