We have been considering the notion of strategic surprisein the context of a report that we are preparing for the USAF. The AI part of this so far had been that US might suddenly face the reality of something like general AIbeing used against us at some point. But it doesn’t have to be like that. It could be that AI could help us delineate strategic surprises in other non-AI domains that human analysts haven’t anticipated (e.g. commercial airliners being used as very smart cruise missiles during 9/11). This intrigues me. Imagine if an AI had guided the original investigators who discoveredan adaptive bacterial immune system (CRISPR) that it could be used as a gene editor way back in 1987. So could AI act as a discovery accelerator?