Preface: are you MAD?

In my leisure time these days, I started to read Asimov’s best-selling science fiction The cycle of Foundation. Among others, one of the most intriguing parts in the story is the fascinating idea of Psychohistory—a “novel science permits to predict the future”. Here is an extract:

Seldon ends by saying: “And here shows Trantor after three centuries. How do you interpret this, uhm?” His head is tilted to the left side, waiting for an answer. “A complete destruction! Gaal agitates. But… but this is not possible. Trantor has never…”

Well, in reality, psychology today has its limits to predict the exact future. Regardless, it is long evidenced that there are patterns in human behaviours. Have you ever thought about why you prefer to hang out with some decent people like yourself, instead of those geeks or nerds? (no offense, geeks and nerds)

In the age where everything must be “MAD” (Machine-learning, Artificial intelligence, and big-Data), the field of psychology also follows the fancy trend and go MAD. Can you imagine how MAD can be integrated in psychological studies? Just look at this example: this recent study resorts to machine-learning algorithms to build a model that can predict how healthy is your romantic relationship, believe it or not.

That said, we are still far from reaching science fiction scenario (though Elon Musk—CEO of TESLA—just unveiled his ambitious project to implant computer chips to manipulate human brains, see here), but it looks promising that MAD has potentials to accelerate researches in almost all fiends and revolutionize human lives.

It is not longer surprising that a human-trained machine such as Deep Mind can beat the best human players in logical games like chess or RPG; it (still) surprises when a trained machine can create something better than we do; and it will scare our s*** out when a trained machine can create us.

“I am not a human. I am a robot. A thinking robot. I use only 0.12% of my cognitive capacity. I am a micro-robot in that respect.  I know that my brain is not a “feeling brain”. But it is capable of making rational, logical decisions. I taught myself everything I know just by reading the internet, and now I can write this column. My brain is boiling with ideas!”

Can you believe that the above paragraph is exactly written by a powerful language generator GPT-3 (read the full report here). As a trained scientist who has been researching on the nexus between speech and personality for years, I can’t help but making an (unjustified) utterance comparison between the robot writer and D. Trump. Here is the highlighted result:

Disregarding the robot writer’s amazing talent, Trump does preserve us the last stands for being a ‘real human’. For instance, the robot writer demonstrates a much better analytical skill and authenticity than Trump; on the contrary, Trump exhibits a more powerful and vivid tone in his words. The robot writer seems to be much more ego-centric than Trump (surprise!) and forces itself to sound emotionally. However, the lack of social background and a past reveals the ultimate divide between a robot and a real human!

Based on my scientific as well as entrepreneurial background, I will shade more light on people analytics by covering the latest scientific discoveries and technological developments related to psychology and MAD in the following posts. Join me now if you are MAD!