If you watched IBM’s supercomputer Watson sweep the library floor with former Jeopardy champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter last night, you probably caught Ken’s funny parenthetical remark below his answer in Final Jeopardy: “I for one welcome our new computer overlords.”
Trebek and the audience got a good laugh out of it, but Simpsons fans were probably laughing even harder, remembering this iconic speech from Springfield’s news anchor, Kent Brockman:
Since appearing on The Simpsons in 1994, the formula “I for one welcome our new X overlords,” which apparently first showed up in the Arthur C. Clark scifi novel Childhood’s End in the 1950s, has popped up all sorts of places over the years, mostly in nerdy web forums as a punchline about everything from aliens to chickens to octopi. But it’s hard to imagine a more appropriate public declaration of the phrase than this:
Our own John Kubicek doesn’t think it’s a big deal that the machines are officially smarter than us and may soon take over the Earth, and I agree. Another reason humans will always be better than robots: We have a sense of humor.
(Image courtesy of Jeopardy)