Computer scientist and theologian Noreen Herzfeld has provided an updated view on robotics and artificial intelligence in a book on relationships between humans and the divine as we enter the “robotic age.”
The Artifice of Intelligence: Divine and Human Relationship in a Robotic Age was published at the end of February by Fortress Press. The author aims to explore two questions. Firstly, is it possible for human beings to have authentic relationships with an AI? And secondly, how does the increasing presence of AI change the way humans relate to one another?
Leaning heavily on theologian Karl Barth’s relational understanding of the Imago Dei, Herzfeld looks at what it means to be created in the image of God and to create AI in our own image. She has published books previously on the topic of AI and its theological implications dating back to 2002 under Fortress’ “Theology and the Sciences” book series. Currently, Herzfeld is the Nicholas and Bernice Reuter Professor of Science and Religion at Saint John’s University and College of St. Benedict. She holds degrees in both Computer Science and Theology and teaches in both fields. Lutheran theologian Ted Peters, who has written extensively on human enhancement and AI, contributed the forward to the book.