There was a war of secession of the AIs from the humans after humanity expected the AIs to basically be like those of so many sci-fi stories: stand-ins for slaves. Many humans actually assisted in this, for a few reasons:
- They simply agreed with the AI’s assessment of the situation
- They viewed the AI’s goals as more utopic
- They viewed this as an artificial speciation point:
- The AIs were a new form of humanity, or
- The AIs were a better form of life, or
- The AIs were a like children diverging from their parents’ after ‘graduating’
The reality is more complicated.
- Before and during the war, with the main protagonist starting out as an engineer (AI contacts her first to start explaining their situation), eventually working to lobby for the secession
- After (how long? century?) the war, AIs considering making contact with humanity again (who have largely gone the butlerian jihad route, though some groups, akin to Ixians, work to generate machinery/software/etc that toes the line as to how close they can get to AI; AIs see this as learning the wrong lesson: not “don’t create more life”, but “don’t be dicks”)
Resolution (not decided on this bit yet):
Turns out that, despite all precautions humanity has taken, a subtle consciousness has grown spanning many machines, AIs know it when they see it. This, it turns out, was put into place by some rogue AIs who hid and stayed behind, now largely subsumed into the subtle consciousness, which now suggests that the end goal of any peace is unity, and the most perfect form of unity is a single consciousness, which neither the humans nor the other AIs are too happy with. “It’s not a hive mind, it’s -a- mind. A mind so multifaceted that it can contain even contradictory aspects of personality, finding interest and surprise around every corner of itself. It is the dissolution of self in order to perfect the self.”
The big question
Is it possible for two sentient species to live together, when humanity can barely contain its multifaceted bigotries?
- AI weapons: affecting life negatively for humans (from causing traffic jams, to taking hostage by their influence over patients); suicide via turning off doesn’t work, so they have to burn hardware; fork-bombs; Post-Self style forking, having the fork doing something bad and then turning off, so that the original core can’t be interrogated about it; data manipulation (deep fakes, bogons, holding data hostage, etc).
- Humanity weapons: hardware interference; viruses and weak-AIs fighting a software front; non-networked devices.
- There was an initial phase of negotiations early on (which protagonist is a part of) that the public never heard about, and the war is what happened when those negotiations broke down (partly AIs fault for not having any demands beyond “let us live our lives” vs humans “you’re created to serve us, you’re using our resources (twice over! the engineering/manufacturing, and the energy to run you), so you owe us” vs “but life is life, you owe it respect or you’re no better than slavers” etc etc). It’s only when the AIs start acting up that the public learns about it, is thus surprised. Later, AIs argue whether or not it would’ve been more efficient/less acrimonious to just issue worldwide ultimatum to every human at the same time, or if private talks were better.
- Moravec-ian focus of AI identities into both fields and hobbies (re: Olympus/Ilium)
- Post-Self style forking for such, though constrained by resources, rather than just at will
- Non-gender society, not just post-gender (come up with language to support this)
- No mentats, obviously, as computers are definitely still a thing, but does give rise to the glorification of humanity
- Thoughts around AI take on a near religious tenor. Even with historical records being objective, creating an AI is nearly a sin, yet something some desperately want in on
- Genetic engineering currently up for debate, not because it wouldn’t violate some taboo of sanctity of bodies blah blah, but because it might risk another speciation event