Pokémon Go: Revelation Withing A Revolution

Sourav “Teddy” Biswas

Satoshi Tajiri might never have thought that his Pokémon would consume the world again in the craziest way possible like it has now. Neither did Niantic anticipate this mass popularity of their game before releasing it during July 2016. The line “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” is definitely becoming the burning motto of the world of Pokémon Hunter. The 80s and 90s’ nostalgia of entertainment beyond the realm of four walls is surely coming back with this game. Just when the idea of game and playing, got saturated to just sitting in front of a screen and pushing some random buttons, Boom!! And suddenly nobody cares in becoming the protagonist of their high definition gaming world! So, Pokémon Go is the best thing that has happened to the world right now! Or is it?

Photo by http://www.cartelpress.com/ Accident on a highway in Massachusetts.

Shit if you wanna catch them all you gotta risk it all…” said 26 year old Lamar Hickson, but what was the risk that he took?, He caused one of the worst highway accidents in Massachusetts because this man stopped the car in middle of a highway to catch a Pikachu. Not only this, a group of armed robbers in Missouri lured and targeted people who had wandered off to strange locations for this game. Thankfully, the robbers were caught by the police but investigation says they have robbed as many as eight people.

Andrew Hollinger, the communication director of Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C shares deep concern when people are coming inside the museum just to play the game while the memories of Nazism and its victims lay untouched in the background. In response to the series of troubles related to this game, lawmakers are now considering setting regulations for players. Felix Ortiz, Democratic New York assembly man, Senator Al Franken, and members of Congress like Rep. Patrick Meehan, are some of the people who are getting in touch with the developers and seriously working on imposing proper regulations to ensure public safety.

Before the Poke lovers face new sets of restriction, let’s ponder on some positive outcomes of this game. John Seo, from New Jersey told the Wall Street Journal that he found a date while hunting for Pokémon. Yeah! People are getting together and as strange as it may sound, this game is actually bringing people together and making them socialize because in order to play this game, you have to get out of the house and explore outside to catch your favorite Pokemons. Not to forget the long distances that one has to traverse to find new Pokémons and rank up in the game.

So guys! If you need an excuse to work out by walking to shed off that extra weight, this game might be it. This game is reportedly helping people with depression and anxiety to come out and meet with others. On the other side small time business are making some extra bucks with this game. With $20-$25 to spend per hour, a driver will chauffeur around the city like New York, Baltimore and Portland with people inside to help them catch Pokémon.

Photo by http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ Frenzy of Pokemon Go going real in Sydney.

As rightly said by Clive James, It is only when they go wrong that machines reminds you how powerful they are, and it is not long that we will be reminded of the limitation of human ignorance and power of internet to disseminate our privacy, if we don’t stop chasing the limelight of this game. It will be long in the future before machines can think and technology can control human lives, we would all undoubtedly agree to this fact, isn’t it? But wait, just for a moment look up and watch a Pokémon hunter mindlessly playing the game in front of you and rethink how much does the statement holds true!




The Washington Post

Rise of the Machines

Jason Nugent

Artist Unk. Inside The Artificial Intelligence Revolution. www.rollingstone.com. Jun. 15, 2016
Artist Unk. Inside The Artificial Intelligence Revolution. http://www.rollingstone.com. Jun. 15, 2016

The rise of the machines is at hand. Advances in AI are moving at an astronomical pace. Hidden interactions are performed daily by artificial intelligence. Simple internet searches are carried out using artificial intelligence. What might come next as machines are built to learn and think more like humans?

Recently Google unveiled their advanced AI named AlphaGo beat a human grandmaster at the ancient game of Go. Several companies, Google and Facebook included, raced to create a machine that could learn the complex game and beat a human opponent. Go is a game more elaborate than chess where each move allows approximately 250 other moves while chess averages 35 possible moves per turn. Because of the complicated nature of Go, it was chosen as an excellent platform for AI development. But why chase such a dream?

Artificial Intelligence. N.d. pixabay.com. Web. 15 Feb. 2016

Google hopes to use the lessons learned from their AlphaGo program to enhance the company’s main focus – internet searches. Currently, Google uses a form of AI called RankBrain within their Google Ads division and have used that technology to aid in search queries. They rely on a system that mimics the human brain and is capable of learning over time, in turn leading to faster results that don’t adhere to current search algorithms. The results tend to be more accurate than those produced using current methods.

There are detractors to the rush for smarter AI. Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Stephen Hawking, and philosophers like Nick Bostrom all sound the alarm regarding detrimental effects of AI development. There are benefits to creating machines that can think on their own and figure out complex tasks the way a human brain can function, but there are inherent dangers in creating those machines. Developers and researchers claim we have complete control over such systems. All it takes is one rogue machine or even someone with malicious intent to turn those machines into something worse.

As the field of Artificial Intelligence progresses, researchers and lay people alike, ought to stay aware of the possibilities ahead. It’s not fear mongering to consider what negative outcomes could happen if such systems were to fall in the wrong hands or they were to develop conclusions on their own which impact humanity in an adverse way. It sounds like Science Fiction but it’s closer than ever. Advances in technology are moving at a rapid pace. It’s important to proceed with caution. Maybe it will amount to nothing, but vigilance isn’t a bad thing.