The Arma Infinitum

In a dusty tome, on an old sagging shelf, in the dimly-lit basement of a disused library, there is an account of a forgotten legend. The words tell of an ancient people who sought to build the Arma Infinitum – the infinity weapon. It does not describe how they managed to build such a weapon, but only the consequences of its existence.

With their legendary weapon, the people had immeasurable power. Against this weapon there was no hope of defence. One by one the enemies of the people were vanquished. Entire armies surrendered at even the rumour of this glorious weapon. The people marched across the land, meeting with victory after victory. They laid claim to the best lands far and wide, and built a fantastic empire, the likes of which had never been seen.

It is said the the Arma Infinitum was so powerful, that even the gods cowered at its magnificence. The people saw they might use their weapon to gain control of the heavenly kingdom as well as the terrestrial one. With their shining weapon in hand, the people learned to control the winds and seas, and the earth and fire.

And now the people, having vanquished both kings and gods, looked out across their lands and considered what they might do next. The people no longer needed to worry about war with man or nature, as their weapon had brought them absolute victory. They had no worry of hunger or disease, as control of the sun, winds and rains had made them healthy and well-fed. Despite their success though, the people still longed for more.

So the people looked for more powerful gods to slay. Guided by their terrible weapon the people searched after the slumbering gods of the old world. They roused these titanic gods and whole worlds were destroyed as they did battle. But the Arma Infinitum would not be stopped, and the old gods eventually fell just as the new ones had.

Indeed the people learned to twist the very essence of the world to their own dreams and desires, they recreated their world to their liking and lived in perfect existence. But with no men or gods left to fight, their perfect existence was unfulfilling and eventually, as the Titans had before them, the people settled down for sleep. Even now, the people still slumber with the Arma Infinitum at their side, awaiting the next who would challenge them.

***********

At this point you probably should have figured out that the Arma Infinitum is actually a highly powerful artificial intelligence. A strong AI offers truly may offer the solution to any and all of our terrestrial and heavenly problems. Every problem we can logically conceive of, from the simple like how to efficiently distribute resources to the absolutely outlandish like how to overcome the limits of light speed, are problems that may potentially be solved by AI. AI may truly be the weapon that vanquishes all of our enemies but the question that bugs me is this: if AI does manage to solve all of our problems, what then?

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