A year and a half after the conception of the Technology and Future of Medicine Course (LABMP 590) it is useful to reflect on its progress and evolution in the context of the coming revolution in medicine and medical education.
The technological singularity occurs as artificialintelligences surpass human beings as the smartestand most capable life forms on the Earth.Technological development is taken over by themachines, who can think, act and communicate soquickly that normal humans cannot even comprehendwhat is going on. The machines enter into a "runawayreaction" of self-improvement cycles, with each newgeneration of A.I.s appearing faster and faster. Fromthis point onwards, technological advancement isexplosive, under the control of the machines, andthus cannot be accurately predicted (hence the term"Singularity"). – Ray Kurzweil
Course conceptualized in March 2011, tested with focus groups inMay for its suitability as a course for both undergraduate and graduate students.
Ten minute introduction Fifty minute lecture Twenty minute discussion In the course we talk about machines replacing many of the functions of human beings. This picture was taken by a machine without human intervention, as were many of the best still images from the course. The video camera is constantly comparing the scene to algorithms and takes still pictures when the requirements of the interesting picture algorithm are satisfied.
Heather Graves, from Department of English and Film Studies, in Faculty of Arts.
CCIS is on the other side of campus for many of us, but it is good exercise to go there and one often has excellent company making the trip!
We endeavor to shoot broadcast quality video of each lecture and discussion. Many previous lectures on YouTube.com at /user/KimSolez and /user/avoca99 . Students taking course for grade are asked to critique one past lecture, and suggest improvements. Students taking course for grade write one 3,000 word paper and give 20 min. presentation on same subject. No required reading. Suggested reading list distributed by Email, is constantly updated.
The technological Singularity. Existential risks, AI, genomics, and nanotech. Ways to optimize a positive outcome for humanity in the co -evolution of humans and machines. The influence of these considerations on medicine of the future . Dean of Science and Dean of Arts speaking, many prominent people internationally. Most lectures not very “medical”. Easily understood. Balanced view provided by incorporating both technology skeptics and technology advocates .
The challenge of friendly AI becomes just a small part of a much larger challenge of creating a friendly world in which humans still have lives of significance, human history is retained and extended. We all need to be engaged in ensuring a positive outcome for humanity. The future is ours to shape. We need to get busy doing that! Part of the imagined future could be one where all disease was eliminated but life was intolerable. Another where the only diseases are from bioterrorism.
All natural disease may be eliminated, leaving only man-made diseases. But that may leave as much for physicians to do as there is today! Challenging responses to bioterrorism and stem cell technologies. Focus of medicine no longer disease but enhancement, which will extend beyond the physical to the moral. Social responsibility an important aspect of medicine and one of the focuses of the course.
“It is the curse of humanity that it learns to tolerate even the most horrible situations by habituation. Physicians are the natural attorneys of the poor, and the social problems should largely be solved by them.” -Rudolf Virchow
• How I came to create this course• How it relates to Future of Medicine
1) In 1994 created websites for CAP, ISN, and RPS and NEPHROL Email discussion group2) In 1997 created NKF CyberNephrology and ISN Informatics Commission3) In 1999 new Lab Medicine Pathology chair Victor Tron suggested I broaden focus to CyberMedicine, and encouraged medical humanitarian ventures
1) In 2007 joined medical advisory board of new medical school in Nepal devoted to rural health, Patan Academy of Health Sciences (“PAHS”).2) Now direct this project at UofA, eighteen UofA faculty are now involved in the PAHS project in Nepal.
1) Tech musings from the Hinterland. Virtual microscopy one topic.2) The first video was from Nepal.
It became apparent that the best way to make this happen was for me to create a novel course of new design. Thus, this course. Presently, we know of no similar courses being presented elsewhere. Eventually it is our hope that hundreds of similar courses will begin appearing at Universities all over the world.
Regulatory oversight that is completely focused on compliance. Discourages risk-taking and innovation. Health care doesnt have the same financial reward system. Facebook isnt about to pay $1 billion for the latest hot-ticket item in imaging and informatics. Security always trumps information sharing, and so better, faster linkages are constrained because of security concerns, most of which are bogus.