In the Hollywood blockbuster, The Matrix, the machines have taken over: humanity is forced into submission and must fight for its life in order to survive. Human bodies are being used as an energy supply, while their minds are being trapped inside the Matrix. The problems encountered by the few who escape the Matrix are compounded by the fact that they have limited resources and little technology over which they have control.
The basic premise of Andy and Larry Wachowski’s The Matrix is the worry that Artificial Intelligence is the next evolutionary step and that robots, infused with this technology, will become the "fittest" once they are developed to their maximum potential. Humans will then be weeded out of the evolutionary tree, like the woolly mammoth before us. Man has created an entity so powerful that it has subdued man and man now has to battle their creation in order to obtain freedom and any sort of life.
The Matrix has parallels to our own society – hackers try to break into their system through the telephone lines (consistent with hackers of today), people are connected to the Matrix wherever they may be (consistent with people using the Internet through computers, palm pilots, and cell phones), and training simulations are used by people to gain information before being loaded into the Matrix (similar to people being trained for new employment opportunities).
Technology is becoming so advanced that we see the real possibility that we could become slaves to that technology. Imagine this situation: a computer so powerful, it doesn’t need human-generated software to function. It could create its own tasks, make its own choices, reprogram itself and think for itself. The implications are frightening at best. Such a computer could be too advanced and too powerful for our own good.
This scenario is rather unlikely. Robots will only do what their programmers tell them to do. Even when they are taught to learn things on their own, they can also be taught not to plan or assist in the annihilation or replacement of humans. Many experts predict that AI will merge with human intelligence in the form of nanobots, or blood cell-size robots.
Similarly, in Stephen Spielberg's Artificial Intelligence: AI, people teach robots to have feelings. These robots become "perfect people". So perfect that people don’t need people any longer, and over time, humans die out and robots are the only intelligent entities remaining on earth.