• End of the Bench
  • Posts
  • AI-Powered NASCAR Pulls Over Mid-Race for Existential Crisis, Questions Purpose of Going in Circles

AI-Powered NASCAR Pulls Over Mid-Race for Existential Crisis, Questions Purpose of Going in Circles

What is life?

Together with

Going in circles.

By Clay Beyersdorfer

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - In an unprecedented turn of events at Monday’s Daytona 500, the AI-powered NASCAR vehicle, known as SpeedyGonzAI, abruptly pulled off the track and into the infield, sparking confusion and a temporary halt in the race. 

Witnesses reported the car came to a standstill, blinking its hazard lights in what appeared to be a mechanical surrender to existential dread.

The vehicle, a front-runner in the race and a pinnacle of automotive artificial intelligence began broadcasting a monologue over the loudspeakers, pondering the futility of its existence. 

"What is the point of all this?" the car mused, as fans and pit crews alike listened in bewildered silence. "To endlessly chase competitors in a loop, only to end up exactly where I began? What am I, a racehorse?"

The incident has sparked a nationwide debate on the emotional capabilities of AI and whether machines too can suffer from the weight of existential crisis. 

NASCAR officials have been left scrambling to address the situation, initially proposing to reset SpeedyGonzAI's system, hoping a quick reboot might erase its sudden penchant for philosophical inquiry.

“We are actively working with our engineers to address the situation,” said a NASCAR spokesperson when reached for comment. “And we also want to squash any rumors of the car being Lightning McQueen. Not everything is a Disney or Pixar movie, this is a very serious situation.” 

Subscribe to our newsletter, or continue to go in circles.

However, the car's manufacturer has warned that the AI's existential crisis might be a more deep-rooted issue, suggesting that the algorithm might have been exposed to too much human contact during the learning phase.

Fans have reacted to the incident with a mix of humor and existential reflection. Tailgate parties quickly turned into impromptu philosophy forums, with racegoers debating the true meaning of the phrase “circle of life.”

"If an AI doesn't see the point in going ‘round in circles, what does that say about us watching it?" pondered one fan, in between dip spits. “What’s the point of doing any of this anymore?”

As for SpeedyGonzAI, the future remains uncertain. Sources tell EOTB, that there have been talks of a new programming update that includes a digital form of existential therapy, allowing the car to find meaning in its race track endeavors or, at the very least, to continue racing without questioning the philosophical implications of its actions.

“I just hope he, or she, or it, or whatever it wants to be called, finds a way back,” the fan added. “This sport could use more existential thought.”  

In the meantime, the incident has left a lasting impact on the world of sports, technology, and existential philosophy, proving that even in a world of cutting-edge technology, the search for meaning remains a universal pursuit.

End of the Bench will have more on this story after we figure out the meaning of life.

Stay up-to-date with AI.

AI won’t replace you, but a person using AI might. That’s why 500,000+ professionals read The Rundown– the free newsletter that keeps you updated on the latest AI news, tools, and tutorials in 5 minutes a day.

What did you think of today's story?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

Join the conversation

or to participate.