Could artificial intelligence trick us into believing aliens exist? Scientists think so

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Oct 28, 2020, 07.26 PM(IST)

People dressed as aliens stand during a costume competition in downtown Roswell, New Mexico 04 July. Roswell is celebrating the 50th anniversary of an alleged UFO crash in July 1947. Thousands of people came to this small New Mexican town to attend the fe Photograph:( AFP )

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Researchers have a new warning. Tread carefully, this one will blow your mind. Banking too much on artificial intelligence as the future of all sentient life? Researchers believe AI could fool us into believing alien life exists

Researchers have a new warning. Tread carefully, this one will blow your mind. Banking too much on artificial intelligence as the future of all sentient life? Researchers believe AI could fool us into believing alien life exists.

According to the study conducted at University of Cadiz and published in the journal Acta Astronautica, specifically took into account a particular formation on the planet Ceres, and found that AI could mistake shapes as proof extraterrestrial life. If that wasn’t enough, AI could also deceive humans into falling for its mistake.

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Currently, AI is being employed across all industries to generate more accurate results without scope of error. But in the hunt for ET, AI is generally used to spot “technosignatures”, that are indicative of alien life.

Accidental formations could be mistaken as evidence of alien life. Ceres currently sits at the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, and had been under the watchful eye of scientists after they spotted bright lights on its surface.

They were disappointed to discover what was causing the bright lights. According to NASA’s Dawn mission, the lights turned out to be a product of volcanic ice and salt emissions.

Also read: NASA discovers water on sunlit surface of the Moon

A crater on the surface of Ceres named Occator, resembled a triangular structure, which led many scientists to speculate that was built by aliens. But it was a misunderstanding. 

In the study, respondents were shown the crater. They were then asked what they made of it, and many of them pointed out its unusual formation.

When they ran the same set of images through an AI system, it also spotted unusual formations, same as the participants. However, while both AI and the respondents found a square image, the AI also registered a triangular image.

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When human respondents were told about the triangle, they started believing that it was there too, effectively manipulating the information.

While the researchers behind the study warned humans of trusting AI too much when it comes to discovering alien life, they added that AI could also detect structures that humans never could.

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