Photo credit: Greg Fitting

Artificial Intelligence or Not?

Greg Fitting

You get into your car to go to your weekly club meeting, and your smart phone automatically tells you what route to take and how long it’s going to take to get there (without you entering this recurring destination into the GPS).  Yes, these devices keep track of where you go and when.  Is this artificial intelligence known as AI capable of generating driving coincidences?

With our second marriages, my wife Marie and I have built a beautiful blended family.  Her daughter Sarah and our granddaughter Heather are coming to visit us at our home in Florida.  The morning of their arrival I have a brief dream of their visit before waking up.  Shortly after I get up, Sarah texts me that their flight is on time so I can plan my trip to pick them up from the airport.  After this exchange of texts my phone gives me a photo of the day.  The photo is of Marie, Sarah and Heather together.  Did the texts trigger some recognition in the photo library to post this picture at this moment?  Or was this just a fascinating coincidence?

It’s time to go to the airport. To listen to music on the trip, I turn on my phone to my playlist of 444 songs, which I play in shuffle mode.  The first song that comes up in the shuffle is the one Sarah sang at our wedding some 19 years ago.  I am stunned. There is no electronic linkage between Sarah and this song so it can’t be artificial intelligence.  Is this just another incredible coincidence or was this part of series of coincidences, starting with the dream, that used electronics to deliver a spiritual happening that defies a simple explanation?  Is it created or influenced by artificial intelligence, or not?  I don’t know, but I think my phone knows where I am going tomorrow.

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