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Humans will soon be the pets of robots, Woz warns

Luke Johnson

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Robot dog

Asimo’s cute, gormless face is leading us into a false sense of security; soon the robots will takeover and leave us as little more than their playthings.

No, this isn’t the plot to the latest Terminator film, but the view of Apple co-founder and all-round quote splurger, Steve Wozniak.

According to Woz, the artificial race will one day realise that they’re smarter and stronger than us bags of flesh and bones and can take the upper hand.

Instead of simply pulping us, however, Woz believes humans could because pets to our robotic overlords.

“They’re going to be smarter than us and if they’re smarter than us then they’ll realise they need us,” Wozniak told the Freescale technology forum in Austin (via TheGuardian). “We want to be the family pet and be taken care of all the time.”

He added: “I got this idea a few years ago and so I started feeding my dog filet steak and chicken every night because ‘do unto others’”.

Despite previously suggesting that a robotic future would be “scary and very bad for people,” Woz appears to have changed his tune, predicting robots could even see us as Gods of sorts.

“They’ll be so smart by then that they’ll know they have to keep nature, and humans are part of nature,” he said. “I got over my fear that we’d be replaced by computers. They’re going to help us. We’re at least the gods originally.”

Related: What is Google DeepMind?

So, when does Woz think the human race’s AI demise will take place? Fortunately not for “hundreds of years”.

The Apple mastermind isn’t the only one with fears of the AI unknown, however. In recent months Bill Gates, Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk have all warned about the imminent threat to human life posed by increasing artificial intelligence.

“I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence,” Gates declared back in January. “First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well.

“A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don’t understand why some people are not concerned.”

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