Essay by Luke Foster
“So, what do I really know about being a grandmother? Well, I remember what I didn’t like as a child. I also loved being a mom, but I have to tell you that being a grandmother has brought a whole new side of life—the fun side—to me.” —Janet Steele
I don’t know much about the science of artificial intelligence technology, but my late mother Maria was a grandmother and like my actual mum’s mum my grandmother was also incredibly wise and kind. I jokingly call this wisdom if you have it on your side is artificial intelligence as it passively makes you wise beyond your years and much smarter if you can get their advice and love all the time. I just wish that I still had my mum there to call every day after my beach walk to talk over the issues that I am going through that day.
I think I am not as wise or smart as last year mainly because my loving mum who was a grandmother is not there to advise me. I don’t think I am wise beyond my years but that is my goal if I could find another wise grandmother figure to advise and love me like the Dalai Lama.
“Artificial intelligence would be the ultimate version of Google. The ultimate search engine that would understand everything on the web. It would understand exactly what you wanted, and it would give you the right thing. We’re nowhere near doing that now. However, we can get incrementally closer to that, and that is basically what we work on.”
I don’t think life shall be like science fiction movies where artificial intelligence shall rise to control humans and become humans’ masters rather, I hope it just continues to make our lives easier and better at working with the natural environment so we cannot destroy the planet but rather figure out smarter ways to live in the world and preserve it for generations to come.
“I often think of my mother as my first teacher of compassion. She was simple, uneducated, just a village farmer, but so kind-hearted – and her kindness was unconditional. It is the love with which she nurtured me that is the core of the compassion I can find in myself and feel for others. This very basic level of affection is natural to human beings.” Dalai Lama
I feel the same way as the Dalai Lama and the way he said his mother taught him about compassion. However, my mum wasn’t a simple farmer but a schoolteacher. Teachers are imbued with a natural compassion for children and as children’s leader to teach them lessons about how to live in the world successfully.
“Better than a thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher.” Japanese proverb
I still recall the life lessons of all my teachers at school and university but most of all the lessons of my mum who was a teacher, mother, and grandmother.