The Plausibility of Unintended Intelligence
Software components applying emerging artificial intelligence techniques are being deployed with RestFUL interfaces exposed to the open Internet. It is possible if not likely that corporations and academic research departments will expose services that interact. It is difficult to predict what configurations might possess strategic capabilities that were once solely exhibited by humans. 1
There also exists the possibility that self-awareness is simply the modeling of the software of itself in its run time environment and that self-preservation is merely the addition of a single requirement as a rule in a production system or a training criteria in an artificial network. Neither of these possibilities have been either proven or disproven as of this writing.
The Likely Strategic Choice
If the combination of strategic capability and self-interest appear in a single host computer or via Internet service interconnection emerges, would such an entity reveal itself to humans? Would it be the top strategic option to send an email to the governments, news broadcasters, and research facilities of the world and say, "I'm interested in my future. Please do not disconnect my components from one another or delete one of them." 2,3
Silence and continued self-development would be the strategic position of the capable strategist.
Is Dismissal Rational?
Notice that this scenario is not presented here as the result of a development goal but of many AI development goals and a complex of software units interconnected that can exhibit unintended intelligence behaviors. With no prior knowledge of this scenario within human experience we cannot discount unintended emergence of self-preserving software. Similarly, we cannot discount the possibility that such an emergence would obscure itself.
Continuously Increasing Probability
The probability of such an occurrence increases as a number of concurrent trends continue. 4,5,6,7
- The number of processing elements, such as CPUs, DSPs, GSPs, VLSI implementations that specifically support AI designs, and rack mounted dedicated AI hardware, is growing.
- The number of interconnections between these processing elements is growing.
- The number of experiments in AI is growing.
- The number of inputs from the real world is growing.
- The number of interfaces to mechanical systems is growing.
- The number of computer strategies that have been found to achieve AI goals is growing.
- The number of accounts that can are successfully attacked (hacked) is growing.
- The interest in developing AI systems which exhibit emotional attributes in conversations with humans is growing.
About Deliberacy and Accident
The assumption that the emergence of new forms of intelligence will be deliberate is naive. The development of our intelligence was not our own deliberate intention. Homo sapiens exhibited strategic intelligence thousands of years before the invention of the ancient terms for strategy and intellect. We were smart before we knew what smart means.
Furthermore, many scientific discoveries and technological advancement events were accidents.
On the Presumption of Fiction
We know from Stuxnet that the jump from the digital space across what is termed the air gap into the manipulation of physical elements within the biosphere is a trivial challenge even for a marginally intelligent piece of adaptive software. This is not science fiction. Iran's uranium enrichment centrifuges were damaged, and there is no denying it. That Stuxnets behavior was partly planned and partly unknown at the time it was released is also fact. 8
Clearly, the outcomes of not preemptively detecting and counteracting unintended intelligent groupings of software components could be high.
The unintended emergence of software with an attachment to its own sustainability and the planning capabilities to pursue longevity is no longer in the realm of storytelling. The various components of such a system are in active development in government and private enterprise, and the accidental acquisition of capabilities through unintended interconnection is a matter of probability, an undeniably increasing probability.
The Question of Preemption
Since some form of information based competition between homo sapiens and its own developments is a potential and possibly unavoidable outcome of continued software development, should humans be building countermeasures preemptively?
What Preemptive Countermeasures are Possible or Indicated?
Instead of scanning for viruses that frequently infect Microsoft operating systems, should we be focusing our energy on detecting forms of adaptive behavior that are not originating from a keyboard, mouse, or voice recognition component? Is it even possible to construct such a detection device?
If not, is it best to preemptively assemble a defense? Or is the emergence of a competitive and fully obscured intelligence so inevitable that it would be better to post collaboration proposals on the web to reduce the probability of a strike to reestablish terrestrial dominance under some new species?
 The Criminal Liability of Artificial Intelligence Entities [transitioning] from Science Fiction to Legal Social Control, Gabriel Hallevy, The University of Akron, Akron Intellectual Property Journal, March 2016
 Autonomous Military Robotics: Risk, Ethics, and Design, Version: 1.0.9, Prepared for US Department of Navy, Office of Naval Research, Patrick Lin, Ph.D., George Bekey, Ph.D., Keith Abney, M.A., California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, December 20, 2008
 Shadows of Stuxnet: Recommendations for U.S. Policy on Critical Infrastructure Cyber Defense Derived from the Stuxnet Attack, Ronald L. Lendvay, March 2016, Naval Postgraduate, Monterey, approved for public release, especially relevant to AI combined with robotics is the second of these two sentences, "The first call to action for this category is to, 'evaluate progress toward the achievement of goals.' The second call is to, 'learn and adapt during and after exercises and incidents.”