Shadow Net Series 30: And Even Now the Robot Starts to Think. I wonder what it dreams.

MIT has been harnessing the power of algorithms and A.I. to create pure nightmare fuel.

Nightmare Machine is pretty much exactly what it says it is. Deciding that reality isn’t scary enough, some bored MIT researchers have decided to harness the raw power of artificial intelligence to create even more unthinkable horrors.

But perhaps the most frightening thing about this task is it employs artificial intelligence to not only consider the effects of fear in humans but it teaches it what scares humans the most, so it can create images so hellish and unfathomable that they bury themselves deep into the unknown depths of our deepest consciousness. What could go wrong?

The website acts as a Tinder for the darkest pits of hell showcasing random blurred, mutated and terrifying faces, asking you to determine if they are scary or not. Only presumably to use that information to create something even more terrifying to display.

Oh yeah, look at that, that’s great

In a less fear-soon-to-be-used-to-break-human being’s tenacious will the website does showcase some Starry Night meets real life human achievements and an interesting A.I. take on the combination:

Okay that’s cool.

Now on fear, being a human being, like I imagine most people (things?) reading this article are – we all know how fear goes. In fact, most of us understand that fear has become the language of politics and therefore power. It should come as no real surprise that ancient human beings understood this fact even more so then we do currently and have utilized fear for everything from furthering the state’s social policies to convincing an entire republic to commit to war. Few emotions capture the attention of our self consciousness quite as effectively.

At the end of the day what is truly most terrifying of the capabilities of AI is not the blurry scary photos it generates on a website and it’s not it’s ability to learn and adapt quickly to whatever task is at hand. No, the most terrifying prospect of artificial intelligence is it’s ability to learn efficiently from human minds, where the deepest creases of fear lie in wait, preparing to be weaponized.

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