“Within thirty years, we will have the technological means to create super-jellyfish intelligence. Shortly after, the human era will be ended.” — Vernor Vinge, 1993

The field of artificial intelligence is poised to cause immense societal changes in the coming decades. There are those who believe that intelligent machines will liberate humanity, while others fear that we will be subjugated or replaced.

In this installation, the Marine Intelligence Research Institute brings you the first glimpse of what a future with real AI will look like. Our laboratory has developed a synthetic organism that flawlessly passes the Turing Test for jellyfish. We invite you to use the terminal to chat with a live jellyfish and our artificial version and attempt to distinguish between the two. Pass through the curtain to find out whether you guessed correctly.

Unfortunately, we also have some alarming news to share. These artificial lifeforms already appear to be reproducing at out-of-control speeds and are congregating in the central North Pacific Ocean, forming a colony of their own that is estimated to have an area as much as twice the size of the United States. Their intentions remain a mystery, and at present there is no plan for coordinated action to address the explosion in their population. We have attempted to contact them, but have so far received no response.

Julian Arni and Colin McSwiggen co-founded the Marine Intelligence Research Institute in 1978, the same year that they received their PhDs in computer science and marine biology, respectively, from MIT.  For the past 37 years, they have dedicated themselves completely to the development of artificial jellyfish intelligence, sacrificing everything—family, youth, financial —to bring you the completed jellyfish AI on display.