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Apocalyptic AIVisions of Heaven in Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality$
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Robert Geraci

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195393026

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195393026.001.0001

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Laboratory Apocalypse

Laboratory Apocalypse

(p.39) Two Laboratory Apocalypse
Apocalyptic AI

Robert M. Geraci (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Apocalyptic AI is transmitted to roboticists and AI researchers through science fiction and is expressed in pop science as a means of raising the cultural prestige of research and researchers and justifying funding spent on robotics and AI. Science fiction often uses religious imagery and language to explore culture and several authors have engaged the idea that human beings might upload their minds into machines. The influence of science fiction is widely accepted among roboticists, who gain inspiration from it, as almost certainly happened for Hans Moravec, the pioneer of Apocalyptic AI thinking. Popular science authors in robotics and AI fuse religious and scientific work into a meaningful worldview in order to gain the benefits of both. Such role-hybridization increases the prestige of the researchers and plays a part in military, government and private investment in robotics and AI.

Keywords:   artificial intelligence, grant funding, politics, pop science, prestige, robotics, science fiction, science studies

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