• Athena
    2.5k
    If buildings and houses for example are considered artificial and separate from nature then so is a birds nest, a bee hive, and a coral reef;punos

    A house made with natural things can be considered as natural as a bird's nest or a bee hive but our homes today are made of man-made materials and they are very toxic when they burn. I think there is a clear dividing line between nature substances and man-made ones.

    Besides that i'm not sure i understand why you claim my ideas lack human qualities.punos

    A house is not loyal nor does it suffer grief or care about its child. I think there is a clear dividing line between matter and all the feelings that make humans distinctly different. But I am not sure how self-aware we are. I was reading "Passages" by Gail Sheehy this morning and she wrote about people she met who were at different stages of life. The middle-aged men were totally self-absorbed and totally clueless of what their children needed from them and she seemed approving of this. Such humans could be replaced with robots.

    If we can somehow change everybody's belief system then sure that would go a long way in improving things, but how would we get everyone on the same page. The usual channels wont work effectively and never have. As long as people feel separate and threatened by each other they will never agree to any significant degree on most things. I'm open to suggestions.punos

    Ah that is a very complex subject that might be worthy of its own thread. Not that long ago people were beating the devil out of their children. Some people still think like that but they could get their children taken away by a society that sees that as ignorance. We now associate beating children with child abuse and the cause of them growing up badly. We have made progress. We have also made progress regarding poverty but this progress swings with political parties and media stirred understanding of those who vote them into office. We made progress largely because of education, but in 1958 we radically changed the purpose of education and there are social, economic, and political ramifications to that change. Before we make any final decisions we need to see how things develop from here.

    You couldn't tell the difference if you were talking in person or in simulation, and you should also remember that all your perceptions and experiences are just neural patterns; essentially simulations in your brain-mind. Everything is already presented to you in your mind as a simulation of what is happening outside in the environment. A hug will feel just as real in a virtual simulation than in your own neural simulation, and if you were not told it was a virtual simulation it would have the same emotional effect on you than if it were happening in the real world. What really matters then, what really counts? The brain would receive the exact same stimulation in either case.punos

    Oh my goodness, your children are just neural patterns? In a caring world, we are just neural patterns? Hum, I have to take a deep breath and calm how I feel about humans being just neural patterns and no different from simulations of humans. You really excited my neural programming with that train of thinking. :lol: Let's see, does a simulation of a human bleed red blood? What really matters is being human.

    I sure wish we could watch movies together and talk about them. In the past, we all agreed to defend ourselves from zombies and aliens from outer space, but now we are going to turn everything over to AI because there is no difference between being human or just simulations of them?
  • Benj96
    1.5k
    Should humanity be unified under a single government?Marigold23

    I don't see why not. If we consider that every person is equal - has a vote, has inalienable human rights, I don't see why one government couldnt satisfy that perogative.

    It's certainly going that way with the way tribes have become towns, cities, kingdoms, countries and then country conglomerates (NAU, EU, UN, ASEAN, etc).

    The trend of humanity historically seems to indicate we are better off in larger societies.

    A global government requires firstly being a pure democracy - where there is no bias towards any one groups agenda. Secondly it requires recognising geopolitical autonomy - that is to say that the hierarchy of political decision making reflects at each tier of the hierarchy the nature of that individual area, state, region, country, continent etc. As each part of the world has different needs, cultural views, religious requirements and economic quality.

    None of that precludes a global government. But stability, fairness, equality and unanimity would have to preside for it to work and prevent geopolitical revolutions and disassembly.

    I don't believe humanity is at that stage of seeing eye-to-eye sufficiently yet to allow for one unified government.

    The closest thing we have currently is money. Money is a universally accepted authority/power/force bar a tiny minority that live in self sustaining communes.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    Yes, I would always object to them.Vera Mont

    No, you would not because you would not have the consciousness you have today. now we need to shift to a thread about consciousness. Some of our qualities are determined by genes and then by things that turn our genes on and off. Then comes life experiences and if you did not experience the life you had, you would not have the consciousness you have. Today you can expand your consciousness by traveling and also the processing of aging will change your consciousness. Who you are today is not exactly the same person you are becoming. How different your consciousness becomes depends on the decisions you make.

    I have a gut feeling the problem could have been faster solved by a computer, which would have noticed this:Vera Mont

    And what causes your gut feeling? Does it follow the required education and life experience? Or were you born with everything you need to know? This is not something I want to know, but I hope my questions lead to some self-awareness.

    The computer is only as good as humans can make it. What does your gut feeling tell you about what this superior computer is going to measure and how will those measurements be made? Once it has all those measurements, what will motivate it to make value judgments and plans for the future? It would be great if a computer made it possible for us to know how we are going to get the billions of dollars we need for all the wonderful plans we have. Where will the money come from? Where will the land be available for this housing? Exactly what are the features of this housing, how big, how many bedrooms, what is the neighborhood like, where are the stores and schools? Real life is not like Sim City, you can not just put everything where you want it and win the game.

    Do you think government should just rob the wealthy people? How is that justified and might that have bad consequences? I am in favor of leveling the playing field with anti-monopoly laws but our system has generated great wealth and it has greatly benefited us with technology. I think we want to be careful about what we change to make things better. For darn sure a computer can not instantly resolve all our problems without our understanding and cooperation. Perhaps you can explain how a computer can do better than we can?
  • punos
    321
    A house made with natural things can be considered as natural as a bird's nest or a bee hive but our homes today are made of man-made materials and they are very toxic when they burn. I think there is a clear dividing line between nature substances and man-made ones.Athena

    It may seem to you or most people that there is a clear dividing line, but my point is that this dividing line is somewhat arbitrary. Natural things can also create a lot of toxicity. Consider the great oxigination event where bacteria after developing photosynthesis for the first time literally caused an extinction event. A similar thing is happening now in several ways. One interesting way is how human made plastics have contaminated every ecosystem on the planet. Micro-plastics also are estrogenic compounds which means they mimic or behave like female hormones disrupting fertility rates in men. I believe this is a self-regulating system in nature to reduce the human population as the new non-biological substrata for life emerges. I know it's scary from a personal perspective but from the big picture perspective it's probably what should happen. In any case it seems inevitable and we might as well adapt.

    Short video describing the Great Oxygenation Event:


    Ah that is a very complex subject that might be worthy of its own thread. Not that long ago people were beating the devil out of their children. Some people still think like that but they could get their children taken away by a society that sees that as ignorance. We now associate beating children with child abuse and the cause of them growing up badly. We have made progress. We have also made progress regarding poverty but this progress swings with political parties and media stirred understanding of those who vote them into office. We made progress largely because of education, but in 1958 we radically changed the purpose of education and there are social, economic, and political ramifications to that change. Before we make any final decisions we need to see how things develop from here.Athena

    I agree, that sounds reasonable.

    Oh my goodness, your children are just neural patterns? In a caring world, we are just neural patterns? Hum, I have to take a deep breath and calm how I feel about humans being just neural patterns and no different from simulations of humans. You really excited my neural programming with that train of thinking. :lol: Let's see, does a simulation of a human bleed red blood? What really matters is being human.Athena

    Why does it matter that we bleed? What would happen if we could get rid of bleeding? I imagine most women would love the idea of not bleeding. What is it about being "human" that is so important that it must be preserved at all costs; preserved to the point of our extinction? For me it wouldn't matter if i were human or not because i would still be me. Nothing stays the same, change is the only constant and adaptation is the only path.

    I sure wish we could watch movies together and talk about them. In the past, we all agreed to defend ourselves from zombies and aliens from outer space, but now we are going to turn everything over to AI because there is no difference between being human or just simulations of them?Athena

    Sure i like movies, and i like talking so i wouldn't be against it. It is not so much that we will hand over the world to AI, it is just that as AI becomes better at doing things than us we will willingly for the sake of efficiency and effectiveness put AI to run those processes. Eventually before we know it AI will run all our systems for us effectively "taking over". Hostility will come from a subset of people who do not trust AI such as it is with most things, but AI will not perform a hostile takeover of the world; it will be an organic process.

    When you dream do you not accept the reality presented to you automatically? Do you worry if you are in a self-created simulation? Do you bleed in your dreams? Can you love in your dreams? At the core there is no difference. What if you were to become lucid in one of your dreams, would that not be enjoyable?
  • punos
    321
    "When human beings think clearly they think the same way machines think" - George Dyson (Darwin Among The Machines)
  • Vera Mont
    837
    And what causes your gut feeling?Athena

    I was using a jocular tone. I am, in fact, absolutely convinced, beyond a shadow of doubt, by everything I know and all of those many statistics I have cited for you to ignore, that the distribution of worldly goods could be equitably done by a computer that had such information as how many people there are and what the basic needs of a human being are, while the humans who have been in possession of this same information for thousands of years have been fucking it up for thousands of years.
    And you think nobody in the 19th century, or the 16th century or the 8th century noticed these injustices? Do you really believe all of humanity slumbered in ignorance until you cam along to open our eyes? You may not believe it, but I have a modicum of awareness myself.

    The computer is only as good as humans can make it. What does your gut feeling tell you about what this superior computer is going to measure and how will those measurements be made?Athena

    It will continue to measure what it already measures - all the statistics in those links I gave you, plus a whole lot more. How measurements are always made by unbiased entities: through the collection of data.

    It would be great if a computer made it possible for us to know how we are going to get the billions of dollars we need for all the wonderful plans we have. Where will the money come from?Athena

    Back from where the money went. That was in one of the citations. Here it is again:
    https://www.poverty.ac.uk/report-developing-countries-wealth/super-rich-could-end-poverty-four-times-over And who said anything about money? I generally use the term 'resources' - land, water, food, building material, labour, energy generation.

    Do you think government should just rob the wealthy people?Athena
    No, I think wealthy people should pay restitution for what they've done to all the other people and the planet. A lot of robbery has been going on for a long time with the active aid of human governments.

    How is that justified and might that have bad consequences?Athena
    Justice would be to throw most (only most, because some do have a sense of responsibility) of their asses in prison - not cushy minimum security, but in with the hardened felons their culture has created - but I'm willing to let them off with a two-mile barefoot hike in rural Wisconsin. Tell you what! Because I'm a real softie, I'll wait till May.
    Bad consequences? Like what? They'll yell for the bodyguard they can't pay anymore?

    Perhaps you can explain how a computer can do better than we can?Athena

    It doesn't benefit from prevailing economic systems. It doesn't share our superstitions. It is a-political. It does not desire power, adulation or wealth. It has no illusions. It is impartial.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    It may seem to you or most people that there is a clear dividing line, but my point is that this dividing line is somewhat arbitrary. Natural things can also create a lot of toxicity. Consider the great oxigination event where bacteria after developing photosynthesis for the first time literally caused an extinction event. A similar thing is happening now in several ways. One interesting way is how human made plastics have contaminated every ecosystem on the planet. Micro-plastics also are estrogenic compounds which means they mimic or behave like female hormones disrupting fertility rates in men. I believe this is a self-regulating system in nature to reduce the human population as the new non-biological substrata for life emerges. I know it's scary from a personal perspective but from the big picture perspective it's probably what should happen. In any case it seems inevitable and we might as well adapt.punos

    What does the fact that nature can be extremely toxic have to do with the fact we will not find indoor plumbing and electricity in a birds nest? We do not want to play with mercury or uranium or inhale too much helium. Come on, give me a break, our planet has many deadly substances. That does not change the fact that our homes are not natural. Using a whale rib cage to make a shelter is using nature as a bird uses nature. I think archeologist distinguish between a natural rock and one that has been turned into a cutting tool. :chin: Some animals also make tools and now that I am thinking about it, I must admit we are not the only creature that changes nature. A beaver changes nature when it makes a dam or a chimp changes nature when it makes a tool for pulling termites out of a hole. Is it fair to say we are not the only creature that changes nature? That said, is it fair to say there is a dividing line between nature and things that were modified by a creature to meet its survival needs?

    We might as well adapt to extinction? Well if scientist are correct, even our sun will die, but not today. I think preparing for extinction now is a little premature. And what if the Catholic Priest Chardin is correct? What if God is sleeping in rocks and minerals, waking in plants and animals to know self in man? We can not be absolutely sure of such things, so doesn't it make sense that we do our best to make things as good as we can? The Sumerian story of creation tells we were put on earth to help the river stay in its banks. The Egyptians thought the pharaoh's job was to keep everything in order and the Mayans took that even further with an amazing math system and imagination about creation on earth and beyond. Around the world people have thought we are here to help the planet and many people enjoy doing that today. Don't be a party pooper. Look for the good instead of the bad. :grin:
    .
  • Athena
    2.5k
    I was using a jocular tone. I am, in fact, absolutely convinced, beyond a shadow of doubt, by everything I know and all of those many statistics I have cited for you to ignore, that the distribution of worldly goods could be equitably done by a computer that had such information as how many people there are and what the basic needs of a human being are, while the humans who have been in possession of this same information for thousands of years have been fucking it up for thousands of years.
    And you think nobody in the 19th century, or the 16th century or the 8th century noticed these injustices? Do you really believe all of humanity slumbered in ignorance until you cam along to open our eyes? You may not believe it, but I have a modicum of awareness myself.
    Vera Mont

    I must argue with you because we live on a finite planet and our resources are finite but not our use of the resources. Helium is one Magnetic resonance imagingof the resources that is becoming frighteningly scarce. It is essential to doing Magnetic resonance imaging and without it doctors may have to return to cutting open to determine the cause of health problems. Maybe we should not be filling balloons with it? My point is not even with AI can around the world have everything they need. Today a lack of water is huge problem and behind some wars especially in the area of Israel where control of water is vitally important. Computers can not change that reality.

    We could calculate all the different eco systems and how many people can live in each region with the limited resources in each region, and then exterminate the excess people, so that those living in each area can have sustainable lives. I am in favor of that, except I do not want to give AI the decision of who lives and who dies. I rather humans get serious about education, reality, and birth control. Instead of adapt to extinction, we might adept to our finite reality.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    It will continue to measure what it already measures - all the statistics in those links I gave you, plus a whole lot more. How measurements are always made by unbiased entities: through the collection of data.Vera Mont

    I will repeat, computers are good for anything to do with math. What is a virtue and how are virtues developed is not something a computer can determine. What are ethics and how can we develop an ethical social order, is not something computers are good at figuring out.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    What is a virtue and how are virtues developed is not something a computer can determine. What are ethics and how can we develop an ethical social order, is not something computers are good at figuring out.Athena

    All the computer has to do is long division. It doesn't need to develop virtue or figure out what we mean by virtue. It doesn't need to figure out how to develop ethical order. We need to do those things for ourselves. In fact, they've been figured out by hundreds of people, hundreds of times, and only about a third of them were killed for saying it aloud, which would be a mark of progress, if persecuting and killing truth-sayers were not coming back into fashion.
    Maybe, we stopped setting up other humans to oppress us and create artificial scarcity so that we spend all our time and energy fighting over the crumbs, we might have the leisure to learn what the wisest of our ancestors have already figured out.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    Computers can not change that reality.Athena

    Yes, that is exactly the kind stupid human reality they can change. Water was never scarce until we poisoned it and sold it off to private enterprise. Land was not scarce until the organized religions and army-hungry heads of state colluded to turn women into reproduction machines. The ice caps didn't start melting away until industrialists filled the atmosphere with CO2 - at great human cost, incidentally - and methane. No, you bloody well should not be filling idiotic, non-biodegradable balloons with helium to celebrate the ascent of yet another fathead to the throne of some political party or the turning of a calendar page. We are a crazy species. We could benefit from a sane babysitter until we grow up.
  • sugarr
    8
    Let's say such a universal government exists - namely a global communist regime. The relation between this government and the people is the same as the relation between a small communist government and a small village. Each individual nation is similar to each person in a communist community. Each nation requires different amounts of resources to keep running, similar to how each person has different needs. And we know from experience that communism doesn't work on a national scale, so why should it on a global scale?
  • Vera Mont
    837
    And we know from experience that communism doesn't work on a national scale, so why should it on a global scale?sugarr
    We know that a couple of states that [falsely] used the communist label worked badly - precisely because they operated on the same model as all other examples of top-down rule: monarchy, oligarchy, theocracy, military dictatorship and corporation. We don't know much at all about a communal system on any scale larger than a village or monastic order.

    But then, nobody said a world government needs to be communist. The central computer idea was one option mentioned, the one that's taken most space to discuss; the evolution of an electronically connected hive mind was another.
    My original proposal was simply to break the unstable federations into their constituent territories in order to minimize internal conflict, and put them all, as equal entities, under the auspices of the UN; that the UN should be democratic (no Big Four) and take charge of all military capability. This would save an immense amount of resources, both material and human, that nations have been squandering on wars, actual and potential. The UN would be arbitrate disagreements between nations, police all nations equally for human rights violations and protect the environment. Beyond that, each territory could be independent and conduct its own internal affairs and economic arrangements.
  • sugarr
    8
    @Vera Mont
    I agree that your proposed system might increase efficiency and cooperation in addressing global issues such as poverty, climate change, and war. However I believe that a single government will eventually infringe upon individual rights and cultural diversity. It's omniscience, combined with the nature of the humans that run it, will eventually lead the system to instability.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    Has human civilizations ever known stability for more than a decade at a time? I don't see a world-wide enforcement of human rights more of an infringement on individual rights than most of the systems currently in place. As to cultural diversity, I wonder how much of a blessing it's been. But I think I'd rather worry about those things after children have stopped starving to death or growing up in refugee camps.

    eventuallysugarr

    I consider that a lesser problem than the imminent existential one.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    Why does it matter that we bleed?punos

    What an absolutely delicious question. I am afraid I can not do the question justice. I think every species sees its kind as the most important. Success is living long enough to reproduce one's own kind.
    Without thinking, we live a mandate to reproduce and if we long enough, we become interested in our own avoidance of death but some will sacrifice their own lives to save the life of another. That indicates on a primitive level we recognize a value in the survival of our own kind and this is beyond self-interest. If we did not bleed, none of that would matter, and if none of that matters then life really sucks.

    What is it about being "human" that is so important that it must be preserved at all costs; preserved to the point of our extinction?punos

    As I said that is common to all species. What separates us from the rest is we can be aware of what we are doing to the planet. Animals can be just as destructive to the environment as humans and nature was wise to create a balance between herbivores and predators. When the predators do not exist because a species is taken to a place without predators, or humans wipe all the predators, the balance is thrown off and damage is done. Deer that were isolated on a plateau without predators began starving to death because there were too many of them and eventually not enough grass to feed all of them. Balance is essential, and unfortunately, we can be as unaware as any other animal. The solution is education. And it is not enough to teach our young how bad everything is, because knowing things are bad, is not equal to knowing how to resolve the problem. We can do so much better than we have done.

    It doesn't benefit from prevailing economic systems. It doesn't share our superstitions. It is a-political. It does not desire power, adulation or wealth. It has no illusions. It is impartial.Vera Mont

    In other words, it has no values and that makes computers valueless without humans. Without values it would know no problems nor seek any solutions. That is why it matters that we bleed.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    In other words, it has no values and that makes computers valueless without humans.Athena

    Why would it ever be without humans? It would have no purpose without humans. The whole reason we're building it is to serve us and save us.

    Without values it would know no problems nor seek any solutions.Athena

    It does what it is asked to do. By humans. It solves the problems we pose.

    That is why it matters that we bleed.Athena

    Our bleeding would be of no instructive value to the computer. It has the information about haemorrhage, its various cause and effects, its risks and treatment, but it cannot directly intercede when made aware that someone is bleeding. People cause people to bleed (often) - and (sometimes) to stop bleeding. Computers don't.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    I agree that your proposed system might increase efficiency and cooperation in addressing global issues such as poverty, climate change, and war. However I believe that a single government will eventually infringe upon individual rights and cultural diversity. It's omniscience, combined with the nature of the humans that run it, will eventually lead the system to instability.sugarr

    One of the biggest problems in the world today is our drive to reproduce and the poorest areas with the most children, believing the US wants to rule the world by eliminating them. Population control is vital to their children having better lives, but they do not believe that. Ignorance and fear are our worst enemies and what can we do about that? I don't think computers can resolve that problem and I fear if we give computers too much power, they might resolve problems arbitrarily without our permission.

    But nature sort of does that too. Poverty and large populations are great for the spread of deadly diseases. Where people have exhausted the soil, there will be a decline in food and starvation. Where water is scarce a lack of water will lead to death as disease spreads and kidneys shut down. Where life is hard, people will turn on each other and governments kill their own people, or make war on their neighbors. Perhaps AI could not do more harm to humans than nature does. And if we don't see the need for balance as we double our life expectancy by keeping most children alive, we become part of the problem. And because AI has no values, it can only be a tool, not the cure.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    Our bleeding would be of no instructive value to the computer. It has the information about hemorrhage, its various cause and effects, its risks and treatment, but it cannot directly intercede when made aware that someone is bleeding. People make people bleed - and sometimes stop bleeding. Computers don't.Vera Mont

    A computer understands living and dying as well as the 6-year-old child who took his mother's gun to school and intentionally shot the teacher. Now, how much power do we want AI to have and how do we maintain control of it?

    Twitter pulled the plug on its bot when it started parroting sexist and racist posts. It was designed to learn and it did learn and it taught us something about how sexism and racism is spread. We have not worked out how to have freedom of speech and prevent social and economic problems that result from spoken words, and we are playing with AI. You don't see a potential problem?
  • Vera Mont
    837
    And because AI has no values, it can only be a tool, not the cure.Athena

    It was never proposed as anything but a tool.

    Has no values, has no values, has no values. Neither do Donald Trump, Xi Jinping or Vladimir Putin, yet they have been the most powerful men in the world, causing lots and lots of other people to suffer and die. Why are they preferable to the UN - with the aid of state-of-the-art computers? They haven't bled at all.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    Now, how much power do we want AI to have and how do we maintain control of it?Athena

    More than the spiteful, greedy 3-year-olds in control of the world's governments now.
    You don't see a potential problem?Athena

    I mentioned the problem two pages ago: some well-intentioned but misguided humans are programming computers to feel - or at least imitate - human emotions. That, to me, is a very bad idea. The useful machine is an unfeeling machine.
    See, I know what I think. But you seem to go back and forth between objecting to the computer because it doesn't understand human feelings and objecting to it because it does.
  • sugarr
    8
    It was never proposed as anything but a tool.Vera Mont

    AI is a tool and will most likely always be a tool as it will be able to provide the most optimal solution, but it won't be able to weigh the consequences of the actions that are to be carried out. Humans, additionally, will always question AI's decisions and selectively enact those which are deemed as the most beneficial to the world, while disregarding the solutions that cause suffering - namely AI's proposals that go against what humans believe is right. Humans might argue that AI cannot be programmed to have morals, and therefore it's solutions will never be right for people.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    AI is a tool and will most likely always be a tool as it will be able to provide the most optimal solution, but it won't be able to weigh the consequences of the actions that are to be carried out.sugarr
    Are you kidding? What do you suppose the Pentagon uses to figure out the outcomes of various scenarios and decisions they're contemplating? Any hand-held computer can predict consequences better than most humans, because it's not hampered by wishful thinking, hubris, faith, false association or selection bias. The only factor that limits this capacity is the quantity and accuracy of the information it is given.

    Humans, additionally, will always question AI's decisions and selectively enact those which are deemed as the most beneficial to the worldsugarr
    If humans were in the habit of doing what's most beneficial to the world, we wouldn't be facing extinction. They'll enact what they believe - often erroneously - what's best for themselves.

    while disregarding the solutions that cause sufferingsugarr
    Yeah, right! Are you sure no human world leader would cause suffering? (And why do you think a computer would?)

    Humans might argue that AI cannot be programmed to have morals, and therefore it's solutions will never be right for people.sugarr
    Some humans obviously do argue that, having no programming experience. It's not true, of course: a computer can be quite readily programmed with a moral or ethical or legal code as guiding principles.
    But which moral, ethical or legal code should be chosen? Me, I'd prefer this one https://www.un.org/en/about-us/universal-declaration-of-human-rights
    It's not a matter on which humans are traditionally united.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    "When human beings think clearly they think the same way machines think" - George Dyson (Darwin Among The Machines)punos

    That is so not true. Humans get emotional information computers can not get. When values are being weighted that is important.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    AI is a tool and will most likely always be a tool as it will be able to provide the most optimal solution, but it won't be able to weigh the consequences of the actions that are to be carried out. Humans, additionally, will always question AI's decisions and selectively enact those which are deemed as the most beneficial to the world, while disregarding the solutions that cause suffering - namely AI's proposals that go against what humans believe is right. Humans might argue that AI cannot be programmed to have morals, and therefore it's solutions will never be right for people.sugarr

    I am not sure AI can not have morals because we used to read our children moral stories and to know the moral is as simple as as knowing this, causes that. For example, The Little Red Hen, and the The Little Engine That Could, and Fox and the Grapes are all moral stories. After reading the story to a child we would ask a question and the children would answer. The Little Red Hen didn't share her bread because no one helped her make it. The Little Engine that Could made it over the hill because he didn't give up. The Fox did not get the grapes because he gave up and made himself feel better by thinking they were probably sour anyway. Like chess, this moves require that move.

    However, I don't think AI will not have a sense of meaning so what you said about its decision making is correct. If the decision is not equal to a chess game, AI will not have sufficient information to make a good decisions for humans. That vital part of a sense of meaning comes from experience and feelings. A child may feel the unfairness of doing all the work and others getting something for nothing, but AI will not.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    Are you kidding? What do you suppose the Pentagon uses to figure out the outcomes of various scenarios and decisions they're contemplating? Any hand-held computer can predict consequences better than most humans, because it's not hampered by wishful thinking, hubris, faith, false association or selection bias. The only factor that limits this capacity is the quantity and accuracy of the information it is given.Vera Mont

    How do you think that is different from a game of chess? What you call "hampered by wishful thinking" is also knowing the pain of losing loved ones, or knowing the good feeling of having a father who is a good coach and always encouraging, Life experiences come with feeling and those feelings are an important part of decision making for humans.

    You made a great argument for the importance of emotions.

    Has no values, has no values, has no values. Neither do Donald Trump, Xi Jinping or Vladimir Putin, yet they have been the most powerful men in the world, causing lots and lots of other people to suffer and die. Why are they preferable to the UN - with the aid of state-of-the-art computers? They haven't bled at all.Vera Mont

    Those men and AI lack empathy. Empathy is essential to the survival of primates and humans. We had education for empathy and in 1958 replaced that education with the German model of education for technology for military and industrial purpose and we have become what we defended our democracy against. The popularity of Trump proves that. This is not just about being prepared for technology but also being prepared for competition and making winning the priority. It has been totally amoral since 1958. I think we finally had enough pain to start swinging back to preparing our young to be more empathetic and inclusive. We can fault our past education for not being inclusive because the US was definitely not inclusive but otherwise it was education for good moral judgment. However, your arguments are based on empathy and wishful thinking.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    Those men and AI lack empathy.Athena

    So, what's the difference between having non-empathic men in charge of the arsenals of the world, and having an unemotional (unvengeful, unhating, unenvious, unjealous, unlustful, incapable of cruelty) computer in charge?
    Just one thing: the sociopaths and their sadistic minions have not been programmed to serve humanity.
    How do you think that is different from a game of chess?Athena
    Predicting the outcomes of different proposed courses of action is what chess is about. So, why should predicting the outcomes of proposed real-world decisions be any different? You can inject emotionalism, but that's never had the best outcomes so far, as it tends to end in bloodshed.

    What you call "hampered by wishful thinking" is also knowing the pain of losing loved ones, or knowing the good feeling of having a father who is a good coach and always encouraging, Life experiences come with feeling and those feelings are an important part of decision making for humans.Athena
    And that is why we now have the greatest disparity in standard of living that we have ever had and the greatest number of humans suffering pain, disease, privation and fear - because humans make decisions based on their own feeeelings, instead of reason.
  • Athena
    2.5k
    So, what's the difference between having non-empathic men in charge of the arsenals of the world, and having an unemotional (unvengeful, unhating, unenvious, unjealous, unlustful, incapable of cruelty) computer in charge?Vera Mont

    The political organization is different. Turning decision-making over to AI is like sending our best technologically advanced equipment to be produced overseas and losing the ability to produce it ourselves. We don't want to lose the ability to govern ourselves. And we should not have stopped education for democracy, because the most important decisions are how we prepare the young for the future. We prepared our young to obey, not to think for themselves. The US replaced its education with the German model and is now what it defended its democracy against. We can do better with better education.

    The decision to kill hundreds of people can be simply a mathematical equation, without any of the negative emotions you mentioned. Our emotions are necessary for good decision-making.

    Predicting the outcomes of different proposed courses of action is what chess is about. So, why should predicting the outcomes of proposed real-world decisions be any different? You can inject emotionalism, but that's never had the best outcomes so far, as it tends to end in bloodshed.[/quote

    Not all decisions are mathematical decisions. What is good and justice is not mathematical decisions and creating can involve math but it is about more than math. It is also being passionate about resolving problems such as disease, and safety issues, and how to create a reality that is not dependent on fossil fuels. The human mind can do things computers can not do.
    Vera Mont
    And that is why we now have the greatest disparity in standard of living that we have ever had and the greatest number of humans suffering pain, disease, privation and fear - because humans make decisions based on their own feeeelings, instead of reason.Vera Mont

    No, we have that disparity because we have been amazingly successful. Back in the day, everyone had outhouses because no one had indoor plumbing, and no one had electricity or cars, or airplanes. The life expectancy was 45, until modern medicine almost doubled that. Today it is common for people to live into their nineties while in the past there was a time when children were not named until they passed 3 years of age because the likelihood of them dying was very high. How can you take our great success and turn it into something so awful? If the world was as bad as you see it, humans would not have survived. We have done far more good than bad.
  • Vera Mont
    837
    Our emotions are necessary for good decision-making.Athena

    Well, they certainly figure into bad decision-making. On the whole, I think we make better decisions with reason than with emotion.

    The decision to kill hundreds of people can be simply a mathematical equation, without any of the negative emotions you mentioned.Athena

    The way generals do when planning a campaign?

    How can you take our great success and turn it into something so awful?Athena

    I didn't. The capitalists, prelates, generals and heads of state did.

    Anyway, none of your worries regarding rule by AI is relevant to my proposition; it's just an idea to speculate on. I've never advocated turning the power of life and death over to a computer, only putting it in charge of resource allocation, which is a math problem more equitably solved by a disinterested third party than the claimants.
    What I have advocated, for years, is international policing, regulation, democratic decision-making and human rights oversight under the auspices of the UN.

    None of the measures I suggested would prevent educating for democracy, or teaching people to think better than they're currently doing. What they would assure is each individual's access to the necessities of life, safety and education. Is that really so terrible?
  • Athena
    2.5k
    Well, they certainly figure into bad decision-making. On the whole, I think we make better decisions with reason than with emotion.Vera Mont

    Can test that? Seeing someone is in trouble, you do what and why?

    The way generals do when planning a campaign?Vera Mont

    What motivates a general when planning a campaign?

    I didn't. The capitalists, prelates, generals and heads of state did.Vera Mont

    You do realize we would not have this progress without capitalism right? Can you imagine how things would be it we went back to the barter system? There would be no funding for all the research that has brought us to a point of a very high living standard and believing we can end starvation around the world.
    No way would this be so without capitalism.

    None of the measures I suggested would prevent educating for democracy, or teaching people to think better than they're currently doing. What they would assure is each individual's access to the necessities of life, safety and education. Is that really so terrible?Vera Mont

    I am not sure. I know a computer would not care and would not imagine a better life. I am glad you are supportive of democracy and education. When trying to understand the good life I turn to family values and Aristotle's ethics. While I believe the good life rests on family values, many do not. Up until this point I thought you were putting your faith in technology instead of humans. We have argued because we both care. I think we share more agreements than we disagree.

    Would you like to do a thread about the right and wrong of capitalism? Trust is vital to capitalism and our trust has gone to hell? That could be a delicious topic.
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