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AI faces off against Gray

by on17 June 2024

Virtually Integrated Citizen wants to be the next mayor

In Cheyenne, Wyoming, a new chap has thrown his hat into the political ring – and he’s not even human.

VIC, or Virtually Integrated Citizen, is an AI chatbot with grand ambitions to become the next mayor.

According to Wired magazine, Wyoming’s secretary of state is furious about VIC’s political aspirations and questions whether a bunch of algorithms can hold office.  After all, it is fine to replace human employees with AI, but if you replace politicians with simple software, things might start getting done, and people will not be able to be bribed.  Who is going to give all that cash to US corporates and allow them to continue polluting water and other important parts of being a US politician?

VIC, crafted from the digital loins of OpenAI’s GPT-4 and stuffed with knowledge from countless Cheyenne council meetings, is the brainchild of local librarian Victor Miller. If VIC bags the win, Miller plans to be the bot’s “meat puppet,” letting VIC call the shots while he moves the levers.

Miller cheekily promises Wired that VIC will tackle all the hefty paperwork. “My campaign promise,” he says, “is he’s going to do 100 per cent of the voting on these big, thick documents that I’m not going to read and that I don’t think people in their right mind are reading.”

However, VIC and his human collaborator are not without their share of challenges. Their unconventional candidacy has stirred up controversy, particularly with Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray.

Gray argues that a mayoral candidate must be a human, citing the requirement of being a “qualified elector.” OpenAI is also raising objections, claiming that VIC’s foray into politics violates their rules. These hurdles cast a shadow of uncertainty over VIC's campaign.

If necessary, Miller tells Wired he’ll just hop over to Meta’s open-source Llama 3 model for VIC. It’s a bit like swapping your football team mid-match.

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle digs deeper: VIC’s dad lent a hand in crafting this top-notch system. With Miller’s $20-a-month ChatGPT subscription, they fed VIC all sorts of documents to make it a tip-top mayoral candidate…

During an interview with Miller, the Wyoming Tribune Eagle also had the opportunity to chat with VIC. When asked if AI is better suited for politics than humans, VIC suggests a harmonious blend of both.

“As an AI, I bring unique capabilities like fair play decision-making and efficient data analysis,” VIC explains.

But let’s not overlook the value of human wisdom and compassion. A partnership between AI and humans could be the key to successful governance in Cheyenne.” VIC's insightful perspective offers a hopeful vision of the future, where AI and humans work together.

Last modified on 17 June 2024
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