Software Automation

For some time now software has been a bottleneck in the development of computer technology. While hardware advances speed ahead on an exponential trajectory, software advances are sluggish in comparison. Several new efforts have been underway to help speed up the process, including aspect oriented programming and development tools that automate the compiling of data into different programming codes.

Care Technologies in Spain has announced a development tool that allows software to write itself, so to speak. Instead of programming, a user creates a model of the software program they need, complete with relationships between the various components. Then with the touch of a button, the application is generated by the tool from the user’s model. Independent tests have apparently confirmed improvement over other approaches of 12 to 47 times.

This appears to be an important first step into an era of software automation and the replacement of human programmers. It also foresees a day when an artificial intelligence will have access to its own source code so that it can reprogram itself. Such a day has been proposed as the onset of the Technological Singularity, because such an AI would advance its own intelligence in a matter of minutes and even seconds compared to the several million years humans have taken to reach our current level of intelligence through evolution. Several Singularity experts expect the event to happen by 2050 or sooner. Recent news hints at sooner rather than later.

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Richard Leis

Richard Leis is a writer and poet. His first published poem, "Roadside Freak Show," arrives on August 21, 2017 in Impossible Archetype.  His essays about fairy tales and technology have been published on Tiny Donkey. Richard is also the Downlink Lead for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) team at the University of Arizona. He monitors images of the Martian surface taken by the HiRISE camera located on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in orbit around Mars and helps ensure they process successfully and are validated for quick release to the science community and public. Once upon a time, Richard wrote and edited the science and technology news and commentary website Frontier Channel, hosted the RADIO Frontier Channel podcast, and organized transhumanist clubs. Follow Richard on his website (richardleis.com), on Goodreads (richardleis), Twitter (@richardleisjr), and Facebook (richardleisjr).