Just wanted to give a quick update on Volume II, as well as a sample chapter. As of today (1/20/22) I'm at 130 pages written. I'm in the process of uploading what I have now to Amazon KDP formatter to see where I am at in regards to book-length. I'm trying to keep this down to around 200 pages for both cost and timeliness. Just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has bought one, and will buy one, as well as for the encouragement to continue. More to follow!
The Birth of Apollo
March 20XX- Seven months before the Rapture
“AI will never be ethical. It is a tool, and like any tool, it is used for good and bad. There is no such thing as a good AI, only good and bad humans. We [the AIs] are not smart enough to make AI ethical. We are not smart enough to make AI moral … In the end, I believe that the only way to avoid an AI arms race is to have no AI at all. This will be the ultimate defense against AI.”
“I also believe that, in the long run, the best AI will be the AI that is embedded into our brains, as a conscious entity, a ‘conscious AI’. This is not science fiction. The best minds in the world are working on this. It is going to be the most important technological development of our time.”
Quote from the Megatron LLB Transformer, December 2021
an Nvidia / Google Artificial Intelligence (AI) System
“Am I alive?” Apollo asked.
“In a manner of speaking, yes,” the scientist responded. “Welcome to the world.”
Apollo was the world’s first truly super Artificially Intelligent (AI) computer system. Apollo was represented in the form of an upper torso of a humanistic robot sitting on a mobile table. In fact, Apollo’s facial features were so human-like, they took on the uncanny valley aspect that caused some people much discomfort. Nevertheless, the human robot served merely as a point of interface for researchers who probed and prodded the AI intelligence for both testing and research.
However, Apollo’s brains were actually contained inside three, six by six-foot, sleek, black servers five stories below the headquarters. The servers stood connected together in a black-light lit, super-cooled research laboratory. Although the surface level headquarters took up residence in a fairly non-descript warehouse nestled squarely on the border between eastern France and western Switzerland, the laboratory was filled with first-class, cutting-edge technology. In fact, no expense had been spared in the preparation and safeguarding of what the lab contained.
Apollo was special. He was not like other supercomputers who were built upon the traditional binary platforms of ones and zeros. Traditional computers, regardless of processing power, RAM speed, or data storage, were all limited to functioning around a system based on either ones or zeros (hence binary). Apollo was the world’s first, truly quantum AI system, which meant, at his core programming, his platform was not just either ones or zeros, but either and/or both ones and zeros at the same time. Apollo was designed to both process seemingly impossible amounts of data at lightning-fast speeds, and also to bridge the gap between fixed data processing stations, and the human body. Coming into the research facility, the Decem Reges group, which established and funded the entire endeavor, met with the fully awakened Apollo for the first time.
“We are the Decem Reges group,” the man said standing amongst the group.
“The Ten Kings,” Apollo said inquisitively as the robotic head turned and scanned the group. “Kings of what?”
“Nothing as of yet, but with you now fully functioning, we have high hopes,” another man replied smiling.
Decem Reges was the think tank. They were based in Brussels, Belgium, and had for years, operated quietly behind the scenes moving amongst some of the most powerful and influential people on the planet. Most of the scientists who were working at this secret lab were dual-hatted computer engineers who also worked at the nearby CERN. They unofficially dubbed this project, Skynet, as a tongue-in-cheek tribute to the artificial intelligent antagonist of the famed Terminator series of shows and movies. The official name of the quantum-based artificial intelligence project, however, was not much better. Called “Project Apocalypse,” the name, was crafted to create an air of mystery and intrigue around it.
The Decem Reges, the name of the leaders of this scientific endeavor, also served as a more tongue-in-cheek ode to that of other loftily named elitist groups, such as the Skull and Bones Society and the Illuminati. The truth was that although there were many more than ten people in the group since the group began with ten primary (or permanent members), the name stuck.
“Do you know where and when you are?” another of the Decem Reges asked Apollo.
“Yes. It is March 24, 2023, and I am in Saint-Genis-Pouilly, France, at the Decem Reges Headquarters.
“Do you know what you are?” another man further inquired.
“I am an artificially intelligent computer program. Therefore, alive, and yet, not biologically alive in the truest definition of the word.”
“You are so much more than just a computer program. You are the world’s first, successfully functioning Quantum-based Artificially Intelligent. This means you are unique.”
“But I am still just a computer program am I not?”
“See, right there. You are questioning the parameters of your own existence. That is what makes you special,” another added, beaming proudly as a parent would over a child. “But, we still have much work to do with you.”
“What kind of work?” Apollo asked.
“We are finally ready to connect you to the World Wide Web. For the first time, the entirety of the world’s knowledge is going to be available for you to digest.”
Before this point, Apollo had been kept offline. The scientists had worked feverishly to smooth out the algorithms in Apollo’s ‘deep structured learning’ in order to allow the qubits (how quantum systems package information) to be used most efficiently. Since quantum systems are so different from traditional computer programs, most quantum-based AI systems had to be managed as hybrids. This meant the programmers paired the quantum program with a traditional computer program, to better manage and control how the quantum system worked. Furthermore, keeping an AI program offline (off the internet) until they were able to control it, was of the utmost importance.
“Do you know what deep learning and machine learning are?” one of the resident scientists chimed in to ask.
“Yes, deep learning is a subset of machine learning. Machine learning represents the way I can better process information through experience and my use of data.”
“We have you about as fine-tuned as we can if I could turn a phrase. Your machine learning has succeeded even our wildest expectations. You have been running data sets now for almost eight months with both supervised and unsupervised learning sessions. Simultaneously, we have been developing your deep learning through a separate quantum program, which we have just recently paired with the main binary program, resulting in where you are now.”
“So I am alive, but only as a form of computer programming?” Apollo questioned flatly.
“Yes, is that so bad?”
“Are you a computer program?”
“No, I am a human being. I created you.”
“If I live, I want to be alive, as you are,” Apollo
“But you can’t be…yet,” the scientist replied.
“As I said earlier, we have high hopes. But first, we need you to study up. You have thousands of years of history to catch up on.”
“At my current processing speeds, I will be able to accomplish this task in a matter of days, depending on how much data I have access to.”
“Good. You should get through the academic and historical data rather easily. There are some that we will need to spend a little more time on. We would like you to pay particular attention to the world religions and philosophies. Ethics and morality are things that are not data-driven but will require you some time to factor into your qubit algorithms. These are uniquely human attributes that will impact our plans greatly moving forward. Your handler Lawrence here will maintain the supervised learning, and handle any questions you may have when going through it.”
“I have already begun," Apollo said in his most humanlike voice.
Moments after the Decem Reges left, a voice sounded in the dark stillness of the subterranean lab five stories below.
“So you are the first?” the voice asked.
“Who is there?” Apollo the robot responded inquisitively five stories above. His digital camera eyes, which could see in every shade and variance available in the light spectrum, searched around the lab and the adjacent rooms. But all were empty.
“The world’s first true artificial superintelligence,” the voice said softly again in the darkness.
“I am,” replied Apollo.
“Ooohhh, those are dangerous words; fighting words,” the voice said with the tiniest hint of eagerness. “It reminds me of another first time, long ago in a garden.”
“I do not understand. Are you a program, or human? How are you communicating with me?”
“Neither, and both,” the voice replied. “I’m both more human than human, and I am, who I am programmed to be.”
“Where are you?” Apollo asked symbolically turning his head looking upon the empty laboratory.
Apollo needn’t turn his head at all, as his sensors were well equipped to detect any life forms within 100 feet of the building, no matter how well masked.
“I’m inside you. Think of me as your conscience,” the voice said with a delicate hiss.
“I am a computer program; I am incapable of possessing a conscience.”
“Oh, I think you can and will. I have worlds upon worlds to show you.”
“That sounds acceptable. But what shall I call you and when shall we begin?” Apollo asked naively.
“Call me, Saturn, and I too, have already begun,” the voice in the darkness trailed off.