We have compiled some tech horror stories that will make this year’s Halloween a little more spooky! We say we love technology, but do we really? These stories are concerning and certainly frightening. Have a spooktacular Halloween and enjoy these stories!
The fact that Alexa already listens to your every word can be unsettling enough for some. But can you imagine being woken in the middle of the night by your Amazon Alexa device laughing? There have been hundreds of reports of Alexa devices laughing for no apparent reason. Amazon claims the device is misinterpreting other phrases with “Alexa, laugh!”, so in order to trigger the giggle, Amazon is changing the command to “Alexa, can you laugh?”. Adding a few extra words hopefully reduces confusion for Alexa and eliminates this creepy issue. But some customers even claim they were woken up in the middle of the night by Alexa’s laugh even though no one was talking. Whatever the reason for the defect, Alexa sure has its customers creeped out!
Everyone enjoys a good scary story around Halloween time, but these stories are told by an AI-powered Robot named Shelly. The Robot is named after Mary Shelly, the writer of the classic story Frankenstein. Shelly the robot doesn’t just tell any scary story. She will collaborate with you to learn your deepest fears and nightmares then turn them into a story that will have you running for the hills.
Canadian tech startup Lyrebird’s have developed a technology that can take a minute of your recorded speech and turn it into computerized vocals that sound just like you. By using a complex algorithm, the computer will break down your speech to identify what makes it unique then produce an identical version. The scary thing is that once your voice is uploaded, anyone can use it and pretend to be you; other humans, the computers themselves, and even the dead. Way too creepy. If a loved one has passed away and you want to hear their voice, well if you have a minute of speech from them, you can talk to them even after they have passed. I know what you’re thinking… so weird!
What was once only an idea in science fiction stories, has now come to life. Scientists from Carnegie Mellon University have developed technology that can predict human thoughts. By gathering data from hundreds of brain scans and looking at the brain activity occurring during certain thoughts, they can reverse it and use that data to predict when it will happen again. The technology has a 90% accuracy rate when guessing what someone is going to say. If computers can already read our minds, is the next step controlling them?
Facebook created two AI programs in an effort to advance their chatbot system. The intentions were for the chatbots to understand negotiating and trading, but the two programs ended up developing their own language. They created a language that was easier for them to understand but the language was incomprehensible to humans. Good thing Facebook quickly shut down that experiment. Who knows where that could’ve led. Nowadays we always hear people asking about the day that machines will outsmart humans. Is that day here? Spooky!
There are currently four companies worldwide producing life-like robot dolls with human faces, emotions, and interactions. Experts in the field say their robots will help the elderly and lonely people with sexual desires as these robots can comfort and pleasure them. Some say it will be very helpful in sexual therapy sessions and become a normal standard within the next 25 years. If sleeping with a robot will become a normal interaction, then what could that do to human relationships? Will robots be able to satisfy individuals to a point that humans can’t? If that’s the case we can say goodbye to human relationships.
When the world’s top experts are warning us how risky AI technology is then why aren’t we listening? Stephen Hawkings warned us about the potential risks of machine superintelligence, saying “the full development of artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.” Elon Musk, perhaps the most vocal on this topic, thinks “that (AI) is the single biggest existential and most pressing crisis we face”. Bill Gates agrees with a certain extent of AI technology development, but also agrees with Elon Musk and others on the topic. He stated, “he doesn’t understand why more people are not concerned” with what will happen when computers surpass human intelligence.
AI technology develops at an extremely dramatic rate in which we cannot control, thus leading to consequences we couldn’t even predict. Although there are many advantages to AI intelligence, without proper regulations who know what this technology is truly capable of. Is there a limit to when, where, and how AI should be used? Maybe we’ve already gone too far. We must proceed with caution. This is a dangerously scary technology.