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Sometime in the future the intelligence of machines will exceed that of human brain power. So are we on the edge of an AI-pocalypse, with superintelligent devices superseding humanity, as predicted by Stephen Hawking? Or will this herald a kind of Utopia, with machines doing a far better job at complex tasks than us?
You might not realise it, but you interact with AIs every day. They route your phone calls, approve your credit card transactions and help your doctor interpret results. Driverless cars will soon be on the roads with a decision-making computer in charge.
But how do machines actually think and learn? In Machines That Think, AI experts and New Scientist explore how artificial intelligence helps us understand human intelligence, machines that compose music and write stories – and ask if AI is really a threat.
ABOUT THE SERIES New Scientist Instant Expert books are definitive and accessible entry points to the most important subjects in science; subjects that challenge, attract debate, invite controversy and engage the most enquiring minds. Designed for curious readers who want to know how things work and why, the Instant Expert series explores the topics that really matter and their impact on individuals, society, and the planet, translating the scientific complexities around us into language that’s open to everyone, and putting new ideas and discoveries into perspective and context.
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