It's totally means. "How" is not a question of motivation, it's a question of methodology. And we're discussing this four comments deep on an article entitled "Threat from Artificial Intelligence not just Hollywood fantasy."
But it is.
I asked you, point blank, HOW you, the hyperintelligent AI, would threaten the human race. Your answers are hand-wavey at best:
- "Maybe the military developes an AI, using IFF codes in training simulations, but nobody has those codes in real life and the AI classifies everyone as enemy. "
So... we're to assume the entire air force decides to shoot itself down because the computer told them to? Computers say stupid shit all the time. The reason we have pilots and training is to know what to do when the computers lay eggs.
- "I'd probably use social modelling to incite as much unrest as I can - strategic use of news, blogs, social media."
You'd lie in the press. We've seen what happens there - people distrust the press. It's also hard to prevent independent sources from contradicting your press unless you've, you know, killed or assimilated literally everyone on Twitter.
- "I'd also look for a way to gain a foothold in meatspace. One of those autonomous factories would probably be the start - I can order stuff, I just need controllable robots to assemble it."
That's not how manufacturing works. Suppose you've got a Toyota factory full of autonomous robots. The dies you have available are useful for one thing - making Toyota parts. Your foundry? It's got Toyota castings. Your raw materials? You don't have any - 100% of the parts at final assembly were made at a different factory. You don't have a Von Neumann Machine, you have a toyota assembly factory. You can't even mix paint in malicious colors because that's not how the supply chain works.
- "Another avenue of attack would be gaining control to computer networks that aren't part of the internet, like the ones used by militaries and power plants."
BAM. You've got it. What are you going to do with it? "Control of computer networks" doesn't necessarily mean anything. Let's say you own every automated system at San Onofre. You still can't do anything with it because the mechanical interlocks aren't automated. There's this idea that large power systems are wholly autonomous... and it's anything but the truth. There's hundreds of dudes whose job it is to keep things running. They'll look at a compromised network and go "huh. Can't trust the computer today. That's a pain in the ass."
- "Imagine a simulataneous shutdown of all the world's power plants (well, not all of them. I need some to sustain myself)."
Great. You caused a brown-out. That's assuming the point above holds true. You still don't own the grid - and the grid allows power from anywhere to go anywhere else.
So so far, hyperintelligent malevolent AI, you've succeeded in pushing military aviation into fallback, posting a bunch of fake tweets, pissing off Toyota and forcing a slowdown at a bunch of powerplants.
It's a long damn way from a T-1000 with a shotgun, and that's why I hate these discussions.