When have you spend exclusive time with your father (or your mother) lately?
I hadn’t for years. During school and my university studies, my father was very busy, working in IT. Since he retired I was very busy, working in IT.
Until some weeks ago, as you know…
Now we are in Sardinia together. Just he and me alone. For two weeks. We are discovering each other again. What we like to drink and eat. When we go to bed or wake up. What we read, what we think. I have plenty of time to ask about the past. How was I as a child? How was Sardinia in the seventies? Why he married my mother? Why did they buy a territory and build a house in Sardinia? How was his father when my father was a boy? How was my grandmother as a mother? What are my fathers’s values and drivers in live?
He has time to discuss with me his thoughts about the future of humanity, when Artificial Intelligence Systems will gain more and more influence. My father is engaged in a foundation caring about The Human Use of IT : How can we avoid that one day mankind is ruled by machines? What rules do we have to set to make machines respect human beings and their values?
You think this is kind of ‘voodoo’ and far away? You are wrong. It isn’t. we are almost there. Read the novel The Circle by Dave Eggers and you realize that IT Technology is already ruling our daily lives. Have Or look at the new generation, feeling under pressure by having to “like” their friends’s Social Media contributions in a timeline that never ends. Have you heard about cars driving alone? You certainly know Siri or other “smart assistents”on your “smart phones”. They will get even smarter. Filter your phone calls for you, take decision for you. But based on which values or parameters?
My father is a visionary men. He worked in IT since the early nineteensixties. He is passionate about philosophy, he already was as a young man. This is a rare combination and our daily walks at the seaside or through pine-tree forests are full of interesting discussions about strengthening human rights and democracy: today and in a future dominated by artificial intelligence.