short-sighted pronouncements - mine or others? the future will tell

From wikipedia by way of boingBoing:

There have been some amazing projects in recent years which have matured now to the point that a new alternative is possible. Wikia is funding and supporting the development of something radically new.

Nutch and Lucene and some other projects now provide the background infrastructure that we need to generate a new kind of search engine, which relies on human intelligence to do what algorithms cannot. Just as Wikipedia revolutionized how we think about knowledge and the encyclopedia, we have a chance now to revolutionize how we think about search.

(the blue is my emphasis.)
People don't so much grasp the idea that the emphasized statement is very short-sighted. It really isn't going to be very long at all before software and algorithms will be way better at sorting (even images) than they are currently. We're talking maximum maximum ten years tops. I'm willing to bet, in less than five years computing technology will powerful enough that we won't be able to justify having to deal with the complicated matter of human bias in place of using machines to sort and organize all our data.

This should really only scare you if you think that all we are is walking meat pattern-recognition machines. More importantly, it should make you realize how many things that might right now seem really important and really special will very shortly be irrelevant. But the more things change, the more they stay the same. We will still be human, social, in need of companionship, food and air.

Hopefully we will all have developed our direct high-bandwidth connection with HaShem further. I think it will still be a long time before a computer can perform mesirat nefesh ;)


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