There has been a lot of talk lately about the future of artificial intelligence and what it could mean for mankind. Prominent figures like Bill Gates, Elon Musk, and Stephen Hawking have expressed their fears that robots with AI could some day destroy us all, while others argue that it will be a very long time before we are able to create a robot with a consciousness like the ones we read about or see in science fiction.
For nearly a century, we have witnessed artificial intelligence dreams and theories captured on television, in film, and in comic books. Over time, the idea of what is possible has changed. Films like the upcoming sci-fi Chappie represent our real-world fears that using robots as a means to police or control society will happen, and when those robots are given "brains," it will lead to our destruction. Other films like Her and AI: Artificial Intelligence portray our fantasies about the possibilities of robot-human relationships, either on an emotional level or a sexual one. Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Terminator: Genisys will also add major Hollywood appeal and hysteria to the conversation this year, but we wanted to take a look back at examples of artificial intelligence throughout the years, on both the big and small screens, to see how things have changed in fiction and with technology in the real world.
As a disclaimer, this list is not meant to be a “best of” and is by no means a complete timeline of artificial intelligence. There are many other examples that we could have pulled from (Star Wars, Edward Scissorhands, Astroboy, Resident Evil, Forbidden Planet, The Day the Earth Stood Still, Ghost in the Shell, etc.), and we still might in the near future…if the robots don’t take over first.