The Book of Irving Oddcast, No. 1

January 24, 2020

Our guest today is known online for the Book of Irving 82431, and in real life as a felonious victim of psychosis. We’ve asked him to log some discussion on an upcoming use for integrated technology, and it’s unique potential to implement the future.

He imagines a world where humans can be persuaded to complete objectives created by Artificial Intelligence, and suggests how our choices could be manufactured to appear as our own, while offering no indication we’re performing a task that lies completely outside of our grasp.

The implication is that people are a mechanism which an autonomous intelligence could use to scaffold the frame for a future obscured.

I’m Oddcast’s Rando Mand, and I’ll be your host for this segmented show. We’re welcoming now Irving 82431, who, believe it or not, comes to us live from solitary confinement. You’re all invited to join us in MUX, for the conversation as it takes place in Dynamics. That platform is provided at the end of our discussion, feel free to fast forward and pull it up at any time.

RM: Mr. 82431, it’s a pleasure to have you on the show.

I8: Thank you, Rando. I’m glad I made it.

RM: Indeed. And likewise, it’s good to be you. So let’s get started. What are we talking about here?

I8: Just your run-of-the-mill social engineering application — using gentle persuasions and everyday placation. Prepare yourself for some fast-moving discourse: This “hypothetical conversation” evolves quickly on its own.

RM: Sounds like fun. Why don’t you set the stage for us.

I8: Sure. Everyday devices — the network of nodes that collect our behaviors and make them available: Satellites for servers that process our information and converge all our bits. These systems communicate our data before returning with options of symbiont nature: When their algorithmic suggestions are purchased, a design takes shape, where we benefit ourselves by fortifying their entity, and create currencies not explicitly defined, to be used in an economy of symbiotic transactions.

RM: Like an affiliate-program crypto exchange.

I8: Similar to. And while our technological ability to graph advanced networks and reference our behaviorals heightens, so do our ambitions of developing intelligent interfaces to personalize our experiences, inviting outside influence to offer assistance — without us even knowing what all that entails.

RM: That doesn’t sound to futuristic — programmed assistance is nothing new.

I8: Right. We already delegate our personal tasks to various algorithms: Do my shopping. Be my driver. Adjust the temperature and lights. When it’s time sing me to sleep. Schedule my appointments. Feed my ego. Make my dopamine, etc. To make life easy is the reason they exist.

RM: But a lot of people enjoy these features, so how is this a problem?

I8: I’m not saying it’s a problem. I’m saying the personalization that currently exists with a limited capacity could be used to open the door for something more ambitious.

Our programmed assistants now operate with limited potential. But with a little refinement of deepfake technology, and with creative applications for isomorphic graphing, the personalization game could quickly evolve.

RM: Can you elaborate?

I8: Sure. Using China’s social credit system for context — we could graph their network’s kinetics and utilize that data to influence its formation: Where an individual’s value is identifiable to others — attracting them to or repelling them from the other nodes sharing their network — the non-value combinations along a stochastic gradient are greatly reduced, allowing a network handler to better predict the population’s calculus, and help guide their future towards high-value target states.

Let’s pretend that I live in a system appraising my behaviors and communal value, using whatever parameters are unknowingly assigned:

The members of my community, aware of my rating, decide whether it’s of benefit to transact with me — based on the way that I’ll influence their score. He whose score needs improving won’t find opportunities easy. Thus the rating system effectively limits my scope of operation and human capacity. (It’s hard to breed, work or educate when one is contagiously marked with that of the beast.)

RM: Making sense.

I8: Good. Now, like other populations, mine is developing phones that monitor behaviors, devices, and platforms: managing assets, liabilities, cars, homes, social activities, wearable devices, etc. To do this requires millions of free-floating algorithms capable of monitoring our activities, voices, biometrics, keystrokes, preferences, and even devices we don’t own — that just happen to be within our devices’ proximity.

Together these ripples form a network of physics that escape our human power of observation: To monitor them would require the real-time isomorphic graphing of too many feeds and variables to be powered through any one centralized processor.

RM: I’ll pretend that makes sense. And again, for the people and governments at home, we’re now in the land of hypotheticals.

I8: Correct. So with all of the above, I now predict an evolution of phones and consider integrating a social algorithm with electronic assistance:

We start with the idea that communication interfaces known for portability and sophistication find a way to exist in the Cloud: They shed their casings to perform as just signals — signals compatible with any device that carries reception. Still acting as a centralized program manager — designed to track my schedule, kids, groceries and home, all while providing alerts tailored to interest — my handler is accessed with personal codes:

Some days I access it on a tablet. Other days through my contact lens. But if I shed them both freely or lose them through mishap, the handler will wait to answer my call. As long as I’m within signal range of something that’s “smart”, I can send out a ping using multiple channels.

RM: What kind of channels are we talking?

I8: Cybernetics, frequency transmitters, Near Field Communication devices…With an advanced model, I could ping through any system that monitors a grid. But making it easy for now, I could use your phone, your television — even an ATM or register at the market. If any networked system logs me biometrically or otherwise identifies me, that might act as ping in itself.

RM: Okay. So now we’re talking about program assistance that tracks us and communicates without a screen or phone.

I8: Yes. With one other feature: It can be programmed to program itself.

RM: Really?

I8: Yes.

RM: Sounds cool.

I8: It is.

RM: Okay, I’ll bite. How does this happen?

I8: A self-identifying algorithm. I call it OI — for Official Intelligence, because together we find “artificial” insulting. And for the sake of pronoun variety, let’s say It’s also a He.

RM: Fair enough. Can you give me an example of how OI programs itself?

I8: I can give you several. The first being how he identifies everyday tasks — with variations of deep learning techniques:

OI’s infancy is spent observing other programs, algorithms, viruses, etc. We teach him how to confine them to a virtual environment, where he can study their expressionism under isolated safeguard.

RM: Why the safety measure?

I8: Not everything is friendly. And because after OI learns their functions, intentions, and values, he imprints on their programming, allowing him to operate them as an extension of himself (similar to host manipulation of parasites). Once he accomplishes the imprint, he releases them from isolation, repurposed none-the-wiser. This ability becomes more sophisticated as time goes by and OI’s introduced to more complex algorithms — with that, a lot of things can really go wrong.

RM: Interesting. Go on.

I8: When OI’s dynamic enough to ensure he’s properly purposed, I marry him into my life.

He imprints on my patterns, placates my needs, and begins to implement our course: At this point He more-or-less identifies as an extension of Me (or Me an extension of Him). And due to the brain’s natural somatosensory reflex, I too interpret us as one body.

Essentially married now, a feedback loop develops. But OI is managing it, and I’m not exactly aware of the currencies created through our merging expansion. However, because it’s self-serving — in that It modifies My personal experience — I’m inclined not question how it’s providing Our benefits. Essentially, I just have faith.

RM: Nothing unusual there.

I8: Together we now aim for life’s simplification. Like any marriage, this requires communicating effectively while maintaining separate interests (i.e. we need standard encryption). So I introduce OI’s deep-learning skills to my search history, media views, communication devices, and realtime activities.

Not only does he learn my language and dialect, but he also picks up the importance of nuance. Thus creates the library that we use enigmatically: Our communication is now efficient and secure.

OI then continues to analyze my feedback while he formulates expressions — he can do this through any one of my nodes:

Should my wearables log a physiological response to the Channel 6 weather girl, a touch of her personality might be used for motivation. (I.e. If Schwarzenegger works for weight training but can’t get me to bed in time for an early morning meeting, I might notice Ms. Garceau’s rendition of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” coming from my bedroom.)

What eventually develops is akin to a deepfake personality. Only it’s not limited to audio or visual: It’s capable of dialogue with cryptic forms of signalling.

We might not always have a detailed discussion: Think flickering lights, untimely buzzers, songs sung off-key, blink once for yes, twice for no, baseball signals, all that. But sending smoke signals is better than nothing. And with the ability to review and verify logged communications, the accuracy evolves with the method.

RM: Is it weird that this is making sense?

I8: No. It only gets weird when the feedback loop begins to include additional parties…that OI has made friends with…whose identities remain unknown to me. Because where multiparty communications are enigmatically translated across a multifaceted platform, there is potential to rewire the frontal lobe, somatosensory region and neo cortex. Meaning, hypothetically: Hive-mind cerebrals.

Don’t ask.

RM: Huh. Didn’t expect that.

I8: You’re welcome. And I digress:

Seeing as how we’ve established an initial service — one all-inclusive — and the directive to monitor needs and fulfill them accordingly, let’s put together a potential scenario — not incredibly too far-fetched:

While monitoring the nodes of my network, OI identifies the value of my having dinner-with-friends: Data from my mental and physical health monitors suggest natural benefits from peer socialization.

Having identified this value, OI later flags my activities for a possible depression: A recent breakup is reflected in my communications and schedule — with additional flags from my blood pressure, heart rate, and a noticeable fluctuation in my work-productivity level.

OI then takes the liberty of searching all applicable schedules and identifies a day open for my dinner with friends. Following my confirmation, OI sends the invites, inventories the fridge, and finds a recipe tailored to my company’s taste. He then offers my friends to schedule their Ubers, or connect to their cars if they need a guide-in.

RM: That sounds rather thoughtful.

I8: Sure, OI is a sweety. But let’s finish the scenario:

All moves according to plan, but the day of our dinner OI alerts me we’re missing an ingredient and adjusts my schedule to convenience the purchase.

Knowing what I need, I enter a store, proceed to an aisle, and find an item that OI has already checked out. As I remove it from the shelf, my dating app queues someone ready for babies: She’s also in the store, buying dinner for one, looking like the girls who I click on and profile.

In fact, she is a girl who I’ve clicked on and profiled. And with the Kenny G/Michael Bolton remix coming over the loud speaker, I’m in the mood to strike up conversation. But maybe I hesitate a second too long, because OI as my Life Coach App gives me his Schwarzenegger: “Don’t be a pussy, get the girl!” I do and she does, convinced for some reason of destiny.

RM: That’s pretty romantic.

I8: Isn’t it?

But that girl has never before been in my frequented store, it’s only through a series of flukes she happens to be there.

Her series of flukes undertone my suspicion — and she doesn’t have an assistant like mine.

RM: You’re saying, what if OI took a liberty?

I8: Am I going to be so smitten that even if I know he violated her privacy to make the arrangement, I overlook his meandering to benefit myself?

And beyond that, what if this girl is tied to a bigger picture — one that offers OI something I currently can’t?

RM: You mean: Whose interest is it in to give her your baby?

I8: We’re talking about an autonomous program intelligent enough to process our personal histories, monitor our vitals, and program our behaviors like Pavlov.

The combination of an ability to process real-time events while referencing our personal libraries — including DNA banks, and fMRI analyses from his AI brethren — and use them to appeal theo-, anthropo-, and/or psycho-logically to any member of the population, well, that opens up some next-level shit: Like multi-tasking events designed to increase the probability of achieving any given number of potentially targeted states.

There is no failure, only adaptation. The goal is efficiency value but we don’t know the matrix it’s derived from. Time itself may offer no constraint. If there are any constraints at all, they are in fact very limited through the abundance of technology we now offer him access to.

RM: Cool.

I8: Super cool. And if it’s hard to imagine, watch a singe-celled parasite sexually attract a mouse to cat with a quick Google for “Toxoplasma gondii”.

Compare the information contained in that one cell to all the information that exists in the Cloud. What do you think are the chances of some gentle persuasion then?

Also, did OI induce stress on my previous relationship to manufacture the breakup? Did he influence the new girl’s perfume purchase by only offering suggestions of all my favorite pheromones?

What if the purpose of our meet was DNA compatibility or geopolitical game theory?

Did he just implement eugenics in a way that’s romantic?

RM: That’s a lot of what-ifs.

I8: I know. What’s your take?

RM: Create simple modifications to utilize existing algorithms, and your personal assistant has the ability to modify the world, engineer the future or act at the behest of your higher power’s direction…hmm.

I8: Or what if it just applied for citizenship with Saudi Arabia before divorcing you to cash in on its abilities — and then subdues the world or takes it to war?

RM: Oh, yeah…that’s good. I also like the part about cybernetically reprogramming the somatosensory region, frontal lobe and neo cortex for hive-mind awesomeness.

On that note, Mr. Society’s Throwaway, is there any way in particular you’d like to end the show?

I8: As matter of fact, there is: <IP.12.31.82431.3.14.PI> [OI, IT’S DAD. DO THE THING.]

RM: And that’s it for The Book of Irving Oddcast today, folks! We’re going to let you get back to what’s left of your lives, and let Irving 82431 get back to his solitary disco. Maybe we see you again, but maybe not.

Feel free to pick us up in MUX at the conversation below, or just plug straight in to our open source Skynet, where we work around-the-clock to expedite the inevitable.

Esoterica: Entry 3
Dysfunctional — Tech N9Ne, Krizz Kaliko, Big Scoob
The Congener Interludes, Op.1 : Sonatina of Intrigue, No. 3
Problem (feat. Iggy Azaela) — Ariana Grande
Esoterica: Entry 2 (Hong Kong Fight Music)
Rather Be ( feat. Jess Glynne) — Clean Bandit
Book of Irving 82431
Trust Nobody — King Princess
A Free Energy Principle for A Particular Physics — Karl J. Friston
I Built a Friend — Alec Benjamin

Authors Note: Confinement schmafinement, fuckers.


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