Flourishing with Intelligence Augmentation Systems


Ken Arnold


March 7, 2023

I’ve noticed some dominant narratives in public discourse around doing-what’s-right-with-AI. I’ll give them some oversimplified names; this is a complex topic.

I’d like to suggest a broader perspective that includes all of the above. It’s the biblical word shalom, sometimes translated peace, wholeness, or flourishing. It involves the absence of conflict and harm, as the translation “peace” suggests, but goes beyond that to suggest a comprehensive vision of things being right. Shalom includes right relationships, including justice.

The Bible doesn’t define shalom very explicitly but instead usually gives examples. That invites us to consider examples of what shalom might look like as we develop a society that includes computational intelligence-augmentation technologies, while also expecting that people will come to different conclusions about the specifics. Here’s a few things that I’ve thought shalom might mean for us. Note that this incudes both threats and opportunities.