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Showing posts with the label Technology

Breakpoint: How Gen Z Differs from Previous Generations

By John Stonestreet and Jared Eckert Published November 30, 2023 Gen Z, the generation born between 1997 and 2010, has a distinct reputation different from baby boomers, Gen X, and millennials. Exactly what the differences are and why they exist is a growing area of interest in research. For example, a new report from the American Enterprise Institute’s Survey Center on American Life analyzes data collected from a survey of baby boomers, Gen X, millennials, and Gen Z about their experiences during adolescence. One finding is that Gen Z—or Zoomers—are less likely to hold a part-time job, attend religious services, have a romantic relationship, and use drugs. They also spend more time online, are more likely to identify as LGBTQ, and report being more lonely than previous generations. One factor behind these differences—and a defining difference itself between Gen Z and the adolescent experiences of previous generations—is the role and use of technology. Gen Z has never known a world w

The most popular girlfriends are AI

 By Mark Penninga - Posted at Reformed Perspective: Published November 2, 2023 Satan’s efforts to corrupt God’s design for marriage and sex has evolved yet again, spurred on by the advance of Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI technology now allows people to create their own virtual girlfriend. For a fee, you can design not just their looks, but also their personality, and then have a “relationship” with them. “Create a girlfriend who is judgement-free! Who lets you hang out with your buddies without drama! Who laughs at all your jokes!” reported British freelance writer Freya India in her article “We Can’t Compete with AI Girlfriends.” According to a recent Breakpoint article , “since 2008, the share of [American] men under 30 reporting no sex at all has nearly tripled.” With more young men being single and lonely, the appeal of these apps is no surprise. Read more here.

Baptist Press: 42 states, D.C. sue Meta on accusations of harming children, teens

By Diana Chandler Published October 25, 2023 SAN FRANCISCO (BP) — Meta’s social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram intentionally target children and teens with features that harm mental health, attorneys general in 42 states and Washington D.C. said in lawsuits Oct. 24. A group of 33 states including California, New York, Pennsylvania and Illinois filed a federal lawsuit jointly in the Northern District of California, while nine states and Washington D.C. filed individually, according to press releases and court filings. Depression, anxiety, insomnia, body dysmorphia, unhealthy prolonged use of sites, and interferences with education and daily life are alleged results of Meta’s manipulative algorithms and other features targeting youth as their brains are still developing. Meta “has profoundly altered the psychological and social realities of a generation of young Americans,” the joint lawsuit alleges. “Meta has harnessed powerful and unprecedented technologies to entice,

Don’t Waste Your Time with a Fake Jesus

 By Wes Bredenhof Artificial Intelligence websites are all the rage. The other day I came across a news story about an AI Jesus. The mainstream media picked up on this website and found it rather quirky. I checked it out so you don’t have to. I’m not even going to provide a link. Really, please don’t bother looking it up. I can report that it is an absolute waste of time. Besides that, it’s also exceedingly sacrilegious, even blasphemous. What did I observe? There’s a video screen with a picture of someone who is supposed to be Jesus. He looks like the typical Western (mis-)representation of what Jesus is thought to have looked like. Users input questions for “Jesus” on a side panel and then this animation answers them. This runs 24/7. The questions are mostly stupid, vulgar, and juvenile. Many of them have to do with bodily functions. Other questions are designed to get this AI to say ridiculous or perverted things. The AI obliges, providing netizens with a non-stop source

The Unabomber dies at 81 by suicide: Why are his ideas becoming popular?

Published June 21, 2023  By Mark Legg - Posted at the Denison Forum: Ted Kaczynski, known as the Unabomber, captured the gaze of millions through not only his murders but also his far-fetched philosophy and mad story. Serial killers often receive widespread media attention, but the written words of one can hardly be more recognized or infamous: “The Industrial Revolution and its consequences have been a disaster for the human race.” These words make up the opening sentence of Kaczynski’s manifesto, “Industrial Society and Its Future.” Kaczynski maintained a niche following of environmental extremists and anarchists in prison, writing countless letters with apparent brilliance and wit to journalists and “fans” alike. He died June 10, two weeks ago, by suicide at eighty-one. Why should we care about the ideas and life of a murderous madman? The tale of Ted Kaczynski can teach Christians many things. Indeed, frighteningly, there is a surge in popularity for his ideas online. So who was t


 By Bill Muehlenberg - Posted at Culture Watch: Published June 21, 2023 The religious basis of transhumanism: Many of the folks pushing things like transhumanism, AI, posthumanism and so on have often made clear the religious nature of their endeavours. They see all this as a new religion offering full and final salvation – but of a radically different sort than traditional religion does. While many atheists and secularists are enthralled by the bright promises of a new technological future, others with a religious bent are also a part of all this, and are quite happy to tell us how old religions are being transcended and replaced in this world of AI and techno-futurism. A critic of all this, James Herrick, has written extensively about these matters. In one 2017 collection of essays he offered this summary statement: “Transhumanists speak confidently of achieving goals such as technological immortality, creating computer deities, and radically altering the human race through technolog

Breakpoint: Should AI be Shut Down?

(Image Source: Wikimedia - Author: mikemacmarketing)  By John Stonestreet and Kasey Leander Recently, a number of prominent tech executives, including Elon Musk, signed an open letter urging a 6-month pause on all AI research. Recently, a number of prominent tech executives, including Elon Musk, signed an open letter urging a 6-month pause on all AI research. That was not enough for AI theorist Eliezer Yudkowsky. In an opinion piece for TIME magazine , he argued that “ We Need to Shut It All Down, ” and he didn’t mince his words: Many researchers steeped in these issues, including myself, expect that the most likely result of building a superhumanly smart AI … is that literally everyone on Earth will die. Not as in “maybe possibly some remote chance,” but as in “that is the obvious thing that would happen.” Using a tone dripping with panic, Yudkowsky even suggested that countries like the U.S. should be willing to run the risk of nuclear war “if that’s what it takes to reduce the

AI, ChatGPT and Ministry

  ChatGPT Logo - Wikipedia By David de Bruyn - Posted at Churches Without Chests: We have always produced machines to reduce our labour. These machines are necessarily stronger than we are. The Industrial Revolution produced machines that could build bigger, better and faster than human hands could manage. In the 20th century, we produced machines that could calculate more and faster than we could, machines that could store and remember more information than we could. We then produced machines that could combine this and beat us at chess. In other words, by one metric, even the computers of the 20th century were ‘smarter’ than us. Our software could reveal more in seconds than our library research could have produced after hours of page turning. The last years represent another threshold. We have now produced machines that can mimic and understand language. Combined with massive storage, and a huge range of examples, we now have machines that can write faster, and sometimes, better tha

Don’t Kick Your Robot: Personhood, AI, and the Image of God

 By Clint Archer - Posted at The Cripplegate: The animal rights group, PETA, has traditionally found the line between person and pet to be blurrier than it is to most of us, but they do a bit better on the distinction between animal and machine. When news of a Google engineer kicking a 4-legged robot went viral, the Twittersphere lit up with ethical questions about robot cruelty. PETA was trolled approached for comment by a CNN reporter. Their response was unsatisfyingly sane: “PETA deals with actual animal abuse every day, so we won’t lose sleep over this incident.” One who has lost sleep over the fears of self-aware AI turning against humanity, is Elon Musk, an early investor in OpenAI. When he was asked what he thought about kicking robots, he responded wryly, “It’s probably not wise. Their memory is very good.” What makes the artificial intelligence industry so intriguing (and alarming) is how similar to humans these computer programs can seem. A staple sci-fi trope is a chilling d

AI is Here: The Precocious Adolescence of Artificial Intelligence

 By Clint Archer - Posted at The Cripplegate: AI is here. We knew it was coming, but it feels too soon. Like when your little boy’s voice breaks and you suddenly realize he needs deodorant and a shave. We all expected Artificial Intelligence to cross the fiction-fact barrier. Just as with submarines, video chatrooms, and talking watches, sci-fi has a way of infiltrating reality. Technology that was only yesterday confined to computer labs, and doubtlessly military compounds, is today available to the public. Now, anyone can sign up for a free account with Open AI, and get artificial intelligence through ChatGPT on their phone. What is ChatGPT, you ask? Let’s pose that question to ChatGPT: “I am ChatGPT, a large language model developed by OpenAI. I have been trained on a vast corpus of text data to understand and generate human-like language. As a language model, my main function is to generate text in response to user input, whether it be to answer questions, provide information, or e