Andy Driver (Big Data & AI Consultant) and Jack Prior (North Korean Consultant) debate the question everybody wants to know the answer to!

Unregulated? Controversial? Misunderstood? Potentially dangerous? Some of the similarities between the potential of Artificial Intelligence and North Korea can be surprisingly scary. We can’t be blamed for our negative outlook on life going forward if we heed the warnings of the likes of Elon Musk, the world seems to be doomed before many of us have had a chance to make our mark!

Fortunately, many of us have much more important things to worry about. Our impending doom, whether it comes via intelligent machines or slightly less intelligent dictators, is not top of my priority list of concerns. However, for the more sceptical amongst us, let’s investigate further:


North Korea – An imminent attack? (JP – RedCat’s North Korean Expert)

While I do not profess to being a political know-it-all, you can’t miss any of the drama unfolding between North Korea and the USA reported in the news over the past few months. On Tuesday 22nd August, the ever trustworthy Daily Express reported North Korea’s warning to the USA to prepare for ‘uncontrollable nuclear war’. Considering the current Daily Express front-page has a stronger focus on sensation than a bag Thai Sweet Chilli Walkers, with more mentions of the worst dressed at last night’s Emmy Awards than actual news, I’m not sure this is a fair evaluation of the situation at hand.

Only 9 days previous, the BBC reported that the director of the CIA, Mike Pompeo, said that although Pyongyang’s progress is moving at an ‘ever-alarming rate’, there is no imminent threat of nuclear war. So here’s the big question – who is more trustworthy: Kim-Jong Un or Donald Trump’s personal nominee for Director of the CIA, Mike Pompeo? A quick Google of dear Mike, who I admittedly know little about, shows he is a fan of waterboarding and is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association who have been readily criticised over the reactions to police shootings, Sandy Hook and Columbine. These are, in my opinion, definite sleights on his character, although none more so than being acquainted with Donald Trump.

If I need to elaborate any further on Kim-Jong Un however, I’m not sure this is the article for you – but for a quick summary, North Koreans are generally brainwashed into believing that Kim-Jong Un could drive by the age of three, that 100{a990e605127f06bac58d8f530ec8d3ddc1721ced564bd12be3752b381e1e9f7f} of political votes went his way and that he won UK’s Rear of the Year in 2009 (pick which one’s a lie). However, going by North Korea’s last attempt to throw their toys out of the pram in 2015, as well as 2012… and 2002… I think we’re safe by a fair few years. North Korea’s missiles are yet to reach the technological capacity to reach the UK, so we’ve got a spare bit of time, and what’s more likely is Kim-Jong Un to simply declare the rest of the world to be destroyed with a dodgy graphic stolen from the original 1996 Independence Day.


Artificial Intelligence – When will they take over? (AD – RedCat’s AI Expert)

Mr Musk is one of the most outspoken people when it comes to the potential dangers of AI, back in 2014 he considered it to be “humanity’s biggest existential threat” and in recent months has reiterated his stance time and time again. There may be evidence for this, this year an AI was successfully trained to play the multiplayer online battle arena game Dota 2 (, successfully winning all of its 1-v-1 games against many of the world’s best players.

According to the Guardian “The AI displayed the ability to predict where human players would deploy forces and improvise on the spot, in a game where sheer speed of operation does not correlate with victory, meaning the AI was simply better, not just faster than the best human players.”

Is this an example of what is to come?

Elon Musk is not alone in this campaign having garnered support from the likes of Bill Gates and Stephen Hawking who have also voiced concerns regarding the dangers of AI. A survey conducted by the University of Oxford and Yale University concluded that there is a 50{a990e605127f06bac58d8f530ec8d3ddc1721ced564bd12be3752b381e1e9f7f} chance that AI will perform all human tasks better than humans in 45 years. ALL HUMAN JOBS! This means that within 45 years we can expect an AI to even outperform Jack the Ripper, and he was pretty good at what he did! I’m staying vigilant if I ever come across J.TR v.02!

With this newfound ability to actually perform the task of murder, as well as their current ability to outsmart humans in war games, surely this means that an AI is on the cusp of overthrowing humanity by 2062.


So who is more of a threat?

Weighing up these incredibly thought out arguments I think it’s safe to say it’s a dead heat. On one hand, North Korea still consider themselves at war with the South since 1953, even if their opposition doesn’t seem to think so. Throughout this time threats across the world have been dished out like school dinners but not actually acted upon, and although their technology may be accelerating I think it’s safe to say we have a few years to go.

On the other hand, AI is considered to be born in 1950 when Alan Turing proposed the Turing Test as a measure of a machine’s intelligence. Although having 3 years on North Korea, my computer still doesn’t show any signs of wanting to kill me, unless it is trying to frustrate me to death with slow broadband.

So who is going to kill me first? Frankly, I have no idea and luckily it seems I have a while to prepare. In the meantime, I’m getting back on the phone!


Andy Driver recruits into the Big Data, AI and Analytics space, if you want to influence the killer AI’s then check out this AI Consultant job: and call him today on 0207 265 7800

LinkedIn:  Andy Driver / RedCat Digital

Twitter:  @Andy_RedCat / @RedCat_Digital

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