Watson

Looking back, I can see many things that were, years ago, thought to be either science-fiction or someone’s imagination or just plain entertainment because it was considered an impossibility. To give an example (young people don’t know about this) just look at Dick Tracy from the comic strips. He had a wrist watch that he could not only talk into and hear but he could see the person he contacted and the person could see him. I was always fascinated then and can see all of it now. For those of you that can’t remember when Dick Tracy was printed, try the 1950’s and ’60’s.

Quite a few things have come from the original Star Trek Series (Capt. James Kirk, Mr. Spock, etc) that, at the time, had my head spinning. There is so much that have come from the imagination of others that wanted to entertain us but, instead, were ahead of the world they were in. They jumped to another sphere. A sphere that no one, not even them, could have seen without a crystal ball into the future. And the then future is still coming, little by little.

We seniors, if you think a little, can see things that came about when we were young that boggled the mind, but, were thought about years before that. The people that were proposing those things were said to be crazy or were completely ignored. And, just think, the not so imaginary things are still coming about. Remember Lost In Space? Remember the robot in Lost In Space?

There is a lot of work being done on AI (Artificial Intelligence). That is the project being done on robots and making them super intelligent. They are making robots that can think, never forget and get smarter on it’s own. Also, they are making robots that are making robots. I can still remember watching Lost In Space on a black and white television and saying to myself that it was impossible for a robot to do the things that it did.

The computer that was on Jeopardy and won the game (named Watson) was a hit for quite some time. Watson is still around. Wrap your head around this; Watson is being used in a hospital diagnosing ailments and proposing a course of action. Watson has read everything there is to read about medicine and every medical journal that comes out. A doctor can not do that nor remember the entire written material. Watson can and did. Watson not only reads written material, it can also look at x-rays, MRI’s and all the other things. I remember reading comic books about that back in the early sixties.

I also remember reading, and seeing movies, about computers going amok, taking over the world and treating humans as slaves. There are scientists who are now thinking the same thing and is getting a lot of resistance to that idea. As a senior citizen, I don’t have to worry about that. I don’t have that much longer in this world and robots aren’t developing that fast. Or are they?

Some people are saying robots are not around them (I guess they are thinking about machines running around doing things) but I beg to differ. I’ll name a few things and, believe me, there are so, so many more things I could name. There are self driving vehicles, cell phones, television (broadcasting units and viewing apparatus’), all sorts of computers, and to put things into a nut shell, everything that is anything has some type of electronics in it. These things can or almost can operate on it’s own or remotely, by another human or by another computer.

All of us at Imperial Plaza utilize some sort of computer (robot) each and every day, from the time we awaken (does a robot (alarm clock) awaken you) to the moment we go to sleep (does the computerized TV or radio put you to sleep), whether we realize it or not. It is a beautiful thing. Or is it? Will the robots take over Imperial Plaza? Will they take over the world? Time will tell. More time than I have left.

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