U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 05-18-2018, 06:21 AM
Status: "If you like healthcare, you'd better vote Democrat" (set 16 days ago)
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
181 posts, read 74,498 times
Reputation: 425

Advertisements

I'd like to pose a question I've been pondering for a while. With the coming age of AI (artificial intelligence) and how it will soon surpass human intelligence by orders of magnitude, I've been wondering if it'll be possible to create a "wealth AI" whose sole task is to generate unlimited wealth by playing the markets. With unlimited computing power and intelligence, I don't see why it'd not be possible for this machine to play the markets and generate unlimited piles of money - think of Warren Buffett times a million.

I'm sure people will jump all over me that there's no such thing as a free lunch. But what if we told this "god machine" that there IS such a thing as a free lunch? Indeed, with enough computing power, there would be no barriers to what it could accomplish. Need unlimited clean energy? Just have the AI invent and manufacture nanobots which would then build a million square miles of solar panels - no humans needed. Or better yet, just task the sucker to build fusion plants and give the world a thousand times more energy than what we have now. And with unlimited energy, we can do unlimited things. Need resources that the Earth cannot provide? Just task robot harvesters which would collect everything we need from space (asteroids, etc.)

So, with this level of tech and unlimited intelligence, is it not possible to create a Star Trek society in which all anyone has to do is to think of something to get it? Imagine if the government had unlimited funds to spend, with zero taxation. A million dollars a year for everybody, with zero inflation. The possibilities would be unlimited.

Crazy dreams aside, I have to think that the elite of the world would do everything in their power to prevent such a thing from happening. If they did, they'd not be the "elite" any more. People just don't give up power willingly. In that case, perhaps a rogue nation would employ one of these super AI's to take down the global finance system. Stop the whole world with a touch of a button. Exciting, huh?

Thoughts?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 05-18-2018, 06:41 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
20,999 posts, read 25,737,156 times
Reputation: 39380
Sure. But only as long as you are the only person to own that financial genius computer. Otherwise, it is like having the miracle number generator that gives you the winning lottery numbers. 10 Million lottery purse and 20 Million people get the winning numbers from their computer. Everyone wins 50 cents.

You can't have 20 million winners in the stock market either. Stock market is a game of many losers and a few winners.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
6,297 posts, read 3,474,966 times
Reputation: 14916
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radical_Thinker View Post
With the coming age of AI (artificial intelligence) and how it will soon surpass human intelligence by orders of magnitude...
Actually we're nowhere near that. One thing experts in AI will tell you is that it is incredibly hard to create a computer that thinks even half as well as a human brain, although they may exceed us in very narrowly-defined tasks. (There was an excellent NOVA program on PBS this week called "Can we build a brain?" that I highly recommend you watch. It gives a very good overview of the huge challenges we still face in building a true AI.)

Quote:
I've been wondering if it'll be possible to create a "wealth AI" whose sole task is to generate unlimited wealth by playing the markets.
Wealth isn't created by playing the markets. Wealth is created by human activities (specifically, the exploitation of resources and the invention of new ideas and devices).

Quote:
I'm sure people will jump all over me that there's no such thing as a free lunch.
You're right - there isn't.

Quote:
Indeed, with enough computing power, there would be no barriers to what it could accomplish. Need unlimited clean energy? Just have the AI invent and manufacture nanobots which would then build a million square miles of solar panels - no humans needed. Or better yet, just task the sucker to build fusion plants and give the world a thousand times more energy than what we have now. And with unlimited energy, we can do unlimited things. Need resources that the Earth cannot provide? Just task robot harvesters which would collect everything we need from space (asteroids, etc.)
Except there ARE hard limits. We can't all live in apartments overlooking Central Park, or in villas in Hawaii. The Earth provides only so much arable land and only so much water, we receive only a finite amount of solar radiation (which powers the Earth's ecosystems), and there's only so much hydrogen available in the solar system (which means there is an upper limit to the power your fusion reactors can generate - assuming we ever succeed in actually figuring out how to build one). And we can't travel faster than the speed of light, which effectively limits us to the resources in the Solar System. The Solar System is a big place, but it's not infinitely big. And infinite resources is what your scenario requires (not to mention magic physics).

Quote:
So, with this level of tech and unlimited intelligence, is it not possible to create a Star Trek society in which all anyone has to do is to think of something to get it?
Nope, for just the reasons I listed above. Star Trek is a fun show, but its economics never made a lick of sense. (And why should they? Would it have made the shows more entertaining if the economics of the Star Trek universe had been consistent?)

Quote:
Crazy dreams aside, I have to think that the elite of the world would do everything in their power to prevent such a thing from happening. If they did, they'd not be the "elite" any more. People just don't give up power willingly.
Human societies are inherently hierarchical, so there will always be an elite. What may change is the criteria that makes someone a member of the elite. (For instance, today raw physical prowess is less important than it was in the past, but social intelligence is more important. A "mere" entertainer may be a part of the elite today; that would not have been possible during the feudal period.)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 08:41 AM
 
Location: Cebu, Philippines
2,157 posts, read 795,391 times
Reputation: 4322
The market is reactive. It depends on how people respond to it. As soon as AI places an order, the market reacts to that order and adjusts the value of money accordingly, which influences the forward value of the money. Money is worth what people think it is worth, not its last selling price.

Think of AI at the race track. As soon as AI bets 99% of the handle on a horse listed at ten-to-one, the horse will pay only 2.10 if it wins.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
57 posts, read 29,231 times
Reputation: 124
The world does not work the way you think it does. Neither does AI. Practically nothing you described in your scenario would work even if there was such an AI.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 09:34 AM
 
293 posts, read 155,031 times
Reputation: 324
OP, what you describe is an expanded form of universal basic income and is already being discussed in academic circles. After all, academics are paid to think radically
AI will not create unlimited wealth in stock market because stock market does not create wealth. What may happen though, is that automation in many fields will eventually push many workers out of job while improving the productivity for the company. So the products will be created "automatically", therefore creating wealth for the owner or shareholders. The owners and shareholders are unlikely to share that gain with the impacted workers, so the government will need to tax them and pay some form of unemployment benefit to impacted workers, or a basic income to everyone in the country.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 10:43 AM
 
Location: Ruidoso, NM
5,170 posts, read 4,730,147 times
Reputation: 4206
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radical_Thinker View Post
Crazy dreams aside, I have to think that the elite of the world would do everything in their power to prevent such a thing from happening. If they did, they'd not be the "elite" any more. People just don't give up power willingly.
Oligarchs usually get what they want, and lately their ability manipulate the population has reached an extreme level. For last 200 years or so the masses in developed countries have benefited from totally unprecedented symbiosis between our wealth and theirs. But that is ending. Actually it started ending a few decades back, leading to the growing disparity.

Regarding the "free money" part of your thesis, advanced AI should be able to produce and build pretty much anything, limited to available resources. Which is why I predict that a much reduced human population will live in amazing luxury, provided that the AI is "tamed".

Robotics will change everything
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 11:23 AM
Status: "If you like healthcare, you'd better vote Democrat" (set 16 days ago)
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
181 posts, read 74,498 times
Reputation: 425
Quote:
Originally Posted by rruff View Post
Oligarchs usually get what they want, and lately their ability manipulate the population has reached an extreme level. For last 200 years or so the masses in developed countries have benefited from totally unprecedented symbiosis between our wealth and theirs. But that is ending. Actually it started ending a few decades back, leading to the growing disparity.

Regarding the "free money" part of your thesis, advanced AI should be able to produce and build pretty much anything, limited to available resources. Which is why I predict that a much reduced human population will live in amazing luxury, provided that the AI is "tamed".

Robotics will change everything
Thank you. If there's a good side to the AI story, it's this. And it's pretty much a guarantee that the global population will crest and fall over the coming generations as global standards of living increase. Who wants kids when there's so much fun to be had?

Imagine a world of just 500 million people enjoying the fruits of a robot society - that's a future worth cheering for.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Ruidoso, NM
5,170 posts, read 4,730,147 times
Reputation: 4206
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radical_Thinker View Post
Imagine a world of just 500 million people enjoying the fruits of a robot society - that's a future worth cheering for.
You might want to read my link...

The "optimal" number will like be a lot less than 500M. Maybe 1M. Maybe less. And peoples' usefulness will decline much more rapidly than the natural rate of population decline.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 01:31 PM
 
9,082 posts, read 3,697,658 times
Reputation: 13383
Robots have no need for currency so why do people think automation will create wealth?

Robotics will be another source of labor.... Same as since the beginning of time. People who use it will make money
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top