...When this emerging [artificial intelligence] arrives it won't even be recognized as intelligence at first. Its very ubiquity will hide it. We'll use its growing smartness for all kinds of humdrum chores, including scientific measurements and modeling, but because the smartness lives on thin bits of code spread across the globe in windowless boring warehouses, and it lacks a unified body, it will be faceless. You can reach this distributed intelligence in a million ways, through any digital screen anywhere on earth, so it will be hard to say where it is. And because this synthetic intelligence is a combination of human intelligence (all past human learning, all current humans online) and the coveted zip of fast alien digital memory, it will be difficult to pinpoint what it is as well. Is it our memory, or a consensual agreement? Are we searching it, or is it searching us?...-- Kevin Kelly.
Not too far away, Nick Bostrum speculates about 'superintelligence' while John Tooby and Leda Comides believe in 'rapid and sustained progress in understanding natural minds':
Humanity will continue to be blind slaves to the programs that evolution has built into our brains until we drag them into the light. Ordinarily, we only inhabit the versions of reality they spontaneously construct for us — the surfaces of things. Because we are unaware we are in a theater, with our roles and our lines largely written for us by our mental programs, we are credulously swept up in these plays (such as the genocidal drama of us versus them). Endless chain reactions among these programs leave us the victims of history — embedded in war and oppression, enveloped in mass delusions and cultural epidemics, mired in endless negative sum conflict.Mahzarin Banaji looks, merely, for understanding.