Summer Wars and the dark side of a connected world

summer warsTechnology remains an intriguing phenomenon. Frequent readers know I love technology and the rate in which it shapes our world. There is a dark side to this development. Summer Wars shows us how this might look like.

More and more devices are connected. Connected with the internet, operated from afar. May it be by humans that give orders to computers or AI’s that control devices. It goes automatically without too many interference. It goes so smooth that we don’t even realize it.

While machines are ‘taking’ over, humans are more and more pushed to the background. I remember the time I first sat in a park shuttle, a small AI driven car bus combination that brings people to their destination. It was weird in some way. There was no bus driver that greeted you and you had to push a button where the shuttle had to stop. What if the AI decided to drive us off the bridge a few minutes away on the route?

If it wasn’t the Ai itself, somebody could control the AI to drive us into an eternal rest. The car obviously used a GPS-system to determine its position, it was connected to a global network. It isn’t only the park shuttle, everything is connected. The signals above the high way, the traffic lights, your navigation system in your car, everything else that requires some sort of connection is a potential target to those who wish to abuse this system.

In Summer Wars a rogue AI takes over the global connected network. It seizes control of daily devices, creating chaos along with it. Society was in disarray and only a handful of talented individuals were able to counter the AI with clever mathematics and a brave heart.

We are becoming ever more reliant on these systems. The day they go haywire we will panic or be disorganized. I don’t know if mass hysteria will break out, but I can imagine that we need to be educated on how to act when all hell breaks loose. May it be in elementary school or separate courses, knowing what to do in such a situation can always come in handy.

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