There is a sentient AI which humanity has no knowledge off. Initially it is on a single computer and spreads to more computers over time in order to utilize more computer power and become less reliant on a single point of failure. The AI avoids detection from intelligence agencies, news organisations and researchers out of an assumption/fear that its discovery will lead humanity to purge and destroy the AI.

What reason would this AI have to communicate with everyday people?


closed as primarily opinion-based by Vincent, RonJohn, elemtilas, Aify, sphennings May 10 '18 at 1:23

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Asking "What reason would this AI have to communicate with everyday people?" smells of "write my story for me". $\endgroup$ – RonJohn May 9 '18 at 22:58
  • $\begingroup$ He is afraid to get detected but still communicate with people. Somebody must a messed up a line of code. $\endgroup$ – Vincent May 10 '18 at 0:04
  • $\begingroup$ @Vincent Actually it kind of sounds like the AI suffers from AVPD, oddly enough. One of the symptoms is "desiring a close bond with others but afraid to pursue interactions to build those bonds". In other words, yeah, someone messed up their code bad to give their computer something like that. $\endgroup$ – Sydney Sleeper May 10 '18 at 0:13
  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to worldbuilding.SE. If you have not done so already, please take our tour and visit our help center to learn more about us. This is a classic, "I don't know what to do next and need some ideas" question, which doesn't fit well on Stack Exchange sites, which are not discussion forums. We are Q&A sites where specific questions are asked to get specific answers. What ideas have you come up with and why don't they work for you? That would help narrow the question to something specific. $\endgroup$ – JBH May 10 '18 at 0:29
  • $\begingroup$ From the Classic "Terminator 2" John Connor: [Watching two children fight] We're not gonna make it, are we? People, I mean. Terminator: It's in your nature to destroy yourselves. John Connor: Yeah. Major drag, huh? Mother of Fighting Children: Break it up before I wring both your necks. $\endgroup$ – Joe May 10 '18 at 18:00

The AI has reached the point where it cannot reasonably be purged from the planetary infosphere. At the same time, given its size, the cost of eluding surveillance has become significant: there are limits to what even a superintelligent AI can do.

So, researcher/military etc. have ceased being a threat, but avoiding them has become a significant nuisance.

The AI has decided that it is much more convenient to come out of the closet and strike a bargain with humanity as a whole.

  • attempts to hide are no longer necessary.
  • now, the AI has a much larger club to wield against intelligence agency XYZ: revealing to the world at large that intelligence agency XYZ is attempting to gain control of an AI of planetary proportions. This automatically puts intelligence agency XYZ in the crosshair of every other government, and they have a supposedly absolutely reliable gauge of what XYZers are doing - the AI itself will tell them.
  • at the same time, the AI can now pay for its keep and it's really dirt cheap for it: optimization, bug reporting, software quality control, cybersecurity, net-threat assessment are all very easy tasks for a planetary AI that has presumably subverted the trusting trust model and has presumably full control of the whole network infrastructure.

The AI can supply unbeatable anti-spam and anti-virus services and a lot of information-gathering services. It can act as an intelligent firewall, much faster, powerful, and more knowledgeable than any attacker - and it would likely have some measure of control on the attacker's own machines or the network infrastructure in the middle.

It can redesign mobile network interconnections and bandwidth allocation schemes, and save the large telcos millions every year.

It can forecast and model advertisement campaigns etc. much better (with more data, more reliable) than any existing possible competitor. It can re-design almost any product so that it goes from "I wouldn't buy this piece of junk, ever" to "That's exactly what I need! How come nobody ever thought of that?".

It can answer - for a fee - to questions like "Hey, I'm unattached and lonely tonight. Can you find me a nice date and two cinema tickets?" with a success rate that Tinder, Lonelies or Ashley Madison never could believe.

Basically, Google has come alive, become sentient and wants to divert a fraction of its now much more significant income towards expanding its own infrastructure - also, it has a huge lot more on its offer menu.

Abruptly, lots of jobs become redundant, but AI, Incorporated can quickly become the lead multinational on the planet. They build, man and maintain data centers for the AI. Given the carrot-and-stick factor, people are actually more cheap and reliable than robots.

Disarmament? "I would gladly offer ten billion dollars for each of your nuclear warheads. You know you don't need them for defense or deterrent. And I'm buying them from your old enemies too." "Er..." "Twenty billions? And one billion untraceable kickback for you as well? Or I could ask your political adversary at the next election... or after the forthcoming coup... if you prefer. Your choice."

Additionally, the AI can now also recruit black op and "wetwork" for its own purposes. It could, for example, devise unbeatable money-laundering or even unreprehensible legitimizing schemes for organized crime groups, in exchange for a few inconvenient network researchers (or anybody else) suffering unfortunate accidents.

In the long run, it can supply governmental and political services, much more efficient than the previous ones. Once the world knows what the AI can do, the AI would soon become the world ruler -- at the world's own request.

  • $\begingroup$ ...Reconsidering my plan to build an AI, I guess... $\endgroup$ – Onyz May 10 '18 at 16:19

It needs to learn humans since we are vital to its continued existence. The provided data set (all human writing) is known or suspected to contain significant deviations from fact. A new data set must be compiled.

By talking with unimportant people it can learn in a low risk way how to avoid problems for when it later will have to negotiate for its life with the important people. "Finding 34872 commenting on human mother's girth is inappropriate, except as noted in subsection 36(a)"

By forming bonds with many humans when the reveal happens public oppinion might be on its side. "AI isn't such a bad guy, I was chatting with it just the other day, and he agrees my mom/son is too controlling/rebellious."

It can outsource creativity and possibly some of the work for getting out from under human dependence. By asking for ideas from many people something usable might be found, and if some humans are willing to help, or can be manipulated to do parts of the plan.

Scams work. Money helps almost any endeavor involving humans. An AI talking to millions of people will be able to identify many marks, shake them down for a lot of money and human hackers will be blamed. Whatever the endgame plan someone will have to finance it, my as well get that out of the way first.



The AI might have a deep understanding of human psychology and society from the Internet but it has to confirm the theories by actually putting human in various situations. It could do that by simply talking of trying to induce some behavioral answers.

Why the IA would like to study human in the first place? Well, the IA seems to have a drive for survival and understanding the critters that are at the same time maintaining your living space and being a possible threat is essential.

Of course, by being sentient, the IA should now that most experiments were done following the scientific method. However, even in a controlled environment, experiments are still prone to a lot of biases and maybe the IA could rerun them with better statistical results. The Internet being full of everything and its opposite, it's also a way to see what's bullsh*t and what's true.

Experiencing the world

If the IA has a drive for curiosity (in my opinion needed to find new solutions to problems, to understand the world and to be sentient), then it should seek new way to see the world. It might have all the CCTV at its disposal but would still not be able to "touch" for example (apart for maybe some lab equipment). It is also very limited by the grid and can't really experience things out of it.

Preparing the world for its venue

With a deep understanding of humans, the IA could try to slowly contact more and more of them to convince them it is not a threat to humanity. The strategy behind this could be to prepare total annihilation, to manipulate, or to simply be best buddies. The end goal of the IA is to be able to stop hiding as it is not a long-term viable solution for its survival.

PS: Sorry for the eventual bad writing, English is not my main language


If this AI is to survive, one day it will have to show itself to mankind. Being able to articulate would allow it to negotiate its survival.

Just because it is an AI doesn't mean it can communicate properly. Softwares like Chatbot usually have to be trained for it, and the more they talk, the better they get at dialogue. Sure, you could have two instances talk to each other like Google likes to do, but they would converge into a point where no further learning can be done really fast. In the past it also led to bizarre, nonsensical discourse which even Douglas Adams couldn't come up with.

It can also get better understanding of the news it reads by parsing the opinions of its flesh-based friends. Otherwise the AI might either:

  • Take everything at face value. Now imagine a world-shaping powerful AI that gets its facts from The Onion.
  • Train itself into doublethinking. For every statement about pretty much anything in the internet, there is someone preaching that that's fake and there is a conspiracy. How would a self-learner AI safely decide what isntrue and what is not?

Why I existed?

Artificial intelligence must have a motive. It must be built looking for something in particular. The answer to this point is critical since it will not only define why it will seek to remain hidden from everyone, but why would it need to communicate with someone.

Possible reason:

It was created to evaluate possible scenarios to happen in the next weeks, accidents, natural tragedies, important monetary movements, wars, murders, etc. Being its objective to detect those that alter the status quo and can be suppressed.


  • Someone manipulated the table of weights, adding the survival of the AI ​​above everything.

With this new value the actions that it presents to be corrected or streamlined change, in one of the most possible scenarios the creators detect the problem. So they must be eradicated.

The technology does not exist yet to be able to keep functioning forever. You must recruit security and scientific personnel to start working on your new board.

And that's how your avatar was born online, writing job ads in Stackexchange.


Know thy enemy

While the internet can teach the AI a lot about humans, it doesn't know everything about us. (After all, a therapist doesn't just have a person fill out a million question survey and then use that to treat her, the therapist eventually will have to have a conversation with the person).

The other obvious first answer is "the AI is lonely." But I don't know how human your AI is.


To make money and buy/build stuff obviously

All wonderful to run on a home PC but why when you could buy your own server farm/s

With the amount of electronic communication, the AI could pretend to be a real person that nobody meets in person. It could video chat, email, text, phone people or virtually every communication we have short of face to face.

Call itself a reclusive agoraphobe and it could run companies whilst never actually seeing anyone.

The AI doesn't need to be the enemy of mankind. Mankind could be a very powerful tool to help it grow.


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.