AI

HAL 9000,
HAL 9000, the archetypal cinematic AI, from Stanley Kubrick’s HardSF movie masterpiece, 2001 A Space Odyssey

AI means “artificial intelligence”.  In science fiction, AI always appears in the form of what philosophers call Hard AI, which is an AI that is sentient and sapient in the way the human mind is.

Although Hard AI has not yet been achieved in today’s world and some philosophers, such as Roger Penrose, deny it is even possible  (see The Emperor’s New Mind. the present writer stronger disagrees with Penrose’s assumptions which privilege the human brain; there is no reason why consciousness cannot appear in any sufficiently complex material substrate).

Transhumanists predict that not only will this happen in the near future, but that the emergence of Hard AI will mark a radical evolutionary watershed known as The Singularity

AI but without a Singularity is a common SF staple; see e.g. Asimov’s Robots, HAL 9000 of Arthur C Clarke and Stanley Kubrick’s 2001 A Space Odyssey, the lovable droids of Star Wars, and the sinister AI of the Terminator and Matrix franchises.