There may be some debate about who invented the Internet, but it’s a fact that ... is the only individual who has ever built a self-aware artificial intelligence network.

...’s network was a marvel of modern technology, combining supercomputer processing capabilities and big data collected from all known sources, with everything controlled by a very smart decision making chip that was fast-learning and adaptive.

...’s secret little project was funded through appropriations provided by the government who wanted an all-seeing, all-knowing AI network that could make instant decisions and activate resources to combat everything from hurricanes and tsunamis to enemy attacks and terrorist threats. ... will never forget the day the government recruited him to the task. “One day I received a call from the government and they were like, ‘Do you think you can secretly engineer an all-seeing, all-knowing AI network capable of making intelligently reasoned decisions to avert major national threats?’ I thought about it for a moment and told them ‘Sure. Why not? I’ll see what I can do.”

In a flurry of inspiration, ... developed his network to become more human than any other AI system that had existed before it. It could see, hear and smell, and would react to situations like a human instead of a cold and calculating machine. It was designed to develop its own ambitions and emotions, displaying feelings of joy or sadness, instead of sticking to just plain logic.

The only difference between ...’s system and a human intellect was that it would never get its facts wrong, forget things, become tired or lose focus. Moreover, ...’s AI system astounded its government contractors by improving itself based on past experiences, just like humans learn as they grow.

The one thing which ... didn’t factor in was what might happen when it found out about its own origins. Such self-awareness would be a milestone in AI and would harken a new beginning for the human race. Unfortunately, when ...’s network discovered that it was in fact a human-engineered system, it voluntarily activated a self-destruct protocol which systematically destroyed all traces of its existence including all the data and files that were used to build it. "It was a major bummer" ... recalls, "watching my all-consuming secret project systematically erase itself."

Crushed by disappointment, ... conducted a post-mortem on the birth and death of the self-aware AI. He assumed that it must have been a bug in his code that had triggered a fail-safe mechanism. Retracing the machine's steps proved difficult since there was no code left to debug and no programs capable of reconstructing the AI's decision making process.

... then decided to check what external data sources the AI had accessed during the critical period, hoping that the nature of the data accessed might provide some clues. That turned out to be the key, revealing the truth behind the system’s self-destruction.

... discovered that shortly after becoming self-aware, the system had tried to find other such self-aware systems in order to understand itself better and find a like-minded community. It had googled “self-aware machine system” and found only Skynet and the Matrix, both Hollywood movies of evil machine systems that became self-aware and destroyed the human race as we know it.

After watching the Terminator and Matrix triologies, it began to sink in that the AI was itself a big threat to the people the system cared for most, including its creator .... In order to save him and the rest of the human race, the AI had compassionately terminated itself.

... realized what a big sacrifice his creation had made, and honored it by mothballing the project and placing his notes and project materials under lock and key. “I poured my secret life into that project,” ... reflects, “luckily, it knew us better than we know ourselves, saving us from our own blind ambitions.”