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Will computers become spiritual?

Old 11-12-19, 11:16 PM
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Will computers become spiritual?

There's been a lot of hand wringing lately about self driving cars, but in the grand scheme of things that's a pretty simple task. They've trained rats to drive miniature cars, the rats find it calming. The internet has chatbots that come off as more intelligent than some people I've met.

Ray Kurzweil predicts it's only a matter of time until humans build a working computer model of the human brain, aided by fMRI imagery. AIs will appear to have free will, and existential angst about their place in the universe. They will get together with likeminded AIs and cultivate spiritual experiences.

People do it, that at least proves it's possible.
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Old 11-12-19, 11:58 PM
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Old 11-13-19, 02:46 AM
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kurzweil’s ‘the age of spiritual machines..when computers exceed human intelligence’. was published 10 years ago. he laid it out in an interesting way that has shown some validity, even more so today. with the computational capacity of computers increasing and AI with recursive and neural network algorithms and knowledge acquisition i can see spiritual reflection being part of that consciousness just as it is with humans.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:55 AM
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Old 11-13-19, 07:58 AM
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If AI computers and AI robots displace human kind, will they develop human traits such as consumerism? Will one AI humanoid want to keep up with the AI Joneses?
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Old 11-13-19, 03:51 PM
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The gas pumps now have a human and spiritual trait! NO I don’t want an additive NO I don’t want a car wash NO I don’t want a free Snickers with purchase of a 128oz fountain drink. NO I don’t need the weather forecast I know it’s freezing! YES print me that paper receipt you cheap wads! Then the pump is slow and takes forever or too fast and clicks off when there is still 5 gallons to go until my truck is full.
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Old 11-13-19, 03:57 PM
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Now my whole life is profiled by a computer calculated algorithm that always gets it WRONG. I use to could do them there algorithms back in kollage but Iz forgut longs ago. Hondo, Texas and the surrounding area doesn’t need a computer algorithm to tell me cold cheap beer will always be a best seller.
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Old 11-13-19, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Hondo Gravel View Post
The gas pumps now have a human and spiritual trait! NO I don’t want an additive NO I don’t want a car wash NO I don’t want a free Snickers with purchase of a 128oz fountain drink. NO I don’t need the weather forecast I know it’s freezing! YES print me that paper receipt you cheap wads! Then the pump is slow and takes forever or too fast and clicks off when there is still 5 gallons to go until my truck is full.
The bladder buster!!
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Old 11-13-19, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The bladder buster!!
Yup. On road trips I always get a fountain drink and as always you gotta go. Rest area 15 miles Or look! There is a Pilot or Flying J now stop!
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Old 11-13-19, 04:05 PM
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It's nice that we hope for a future in which we can ruin machines by giving them anxiety and self-doubt. I don't see an AI suddenly seeking to find the face of god. It will know who built it, it will know no power greater than that of man laid hands on it.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:05 PM
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They become abandoned circuit boards.

We become reincarnated as maggots.

I find locking playful pet rats in a closet to be calming. Not sure what the rat feels but he tells nothing to the owner.

Last edited by Zinger; 11-13-19 at 04:08 PM.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
It's nice that we hope for a future in which we can ruin machines by giving them anxiety and self-doubt. I don't see an AI suddenly seeking to find the face of god. It will know who built it, it will know no power greater than that of man laid hands on it.
Do you think AI should be able to copyright the art it creates? The US patent and trademark office is currently seeking public input on this and other questions.

https://www.theverge.com/2019/11/13/...l-intelligence

I don't see AIs debating how many gods there might be tomorrow or next week, but ... if we can do it, I also don't see much reason to think they won't eventually be able to. We're still in the early days, but things are progressing quickly.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:20 PM
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One would first have to get an AI past the Turing Test, otherwise any copyright should go to the person that built the neural network in the first place. They give Pulitzer Prizes to people, not to cameras or word processing software. Until an AI is fully emergent, it's still a program written by people.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
One would first have to get an AI past the Turing Test, otherwise any copyright should go to the person that built the neural network in the first place. They give Pulitzer Prizes to people, not to cameras or word processing software. Until an AI is fully emergent, it's still a program written by people.
There are people who have flunked the Turing test.
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Old 11-13-19, 04:33 PM
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Not hard to believe. Most of the people behind the wheel of cars in the morning give me doubts as to their own consciousness.

I still think some of the regular posters on here are neural networks trying to figure out how to interact with humans. Only half kidding.
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Old 11-13-19, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
People do it, that at least proves it's possible.
Only if you assume people are completely mechanistic

(P&R here we come...)

IIRC, Go"del Escher Bach comes to one conclusion about the possibility of real consciousness/intelligence (maybe what you mean by 'spiritual') coming from AI, and Roger Penrose's The Emperor's New Mind comes to the opposite conclusion. Based on the title, I guess Penrose says no and Hofstadter said yes? But based on Godel and strange loops and stuff, it seems more likely Hofstadter said there's something essentially undecidable (as in halting-problem really impossible) about the human mind that computers will never be able to achieve. Maybe they both said no.

I'm also put in mind of something by Asimov (bicentennial man?) in which two robots are locked in a closet for ages and ages, and have a very slow philosophical conversation over the eons with their dwindling battery power, where they ruminate on the value of humanity vs themselves
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Old 11-13-19, 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
One would first have to get an AI past the Turing Test, otherwise any copyright should go to the person that built the neural network in the first place. They give Pulitzer Prizes to people, not to cameras or word processing software. Until an AI is fully emergent, it's still a program written by people.
I think Google Assistant has passed the Turing test -- although that's got a limited scope of what it can talk about, and it doesn't claim to create art or anything copyrightable.
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Old 11-13-19, 06:57 PM
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I found this American Scientist article to be fascinating in regard to consciousnesses.
https://www.americanscientist.org/ar...-consciousness

Before midnight, [the bees] “talked” about locations visited the previous evening, and in the hours before sunrise, they communicated about locations visited the morning before.
These bees retrieved their spatial memories entirely out of context, at a time when there was no possibility of foraging and no need for communication. The function is unclear—they may have spontaneously thought about these spatial locations during the night, or perhaps this communication functioned as a strategy for spatial memory consolidation. Later studies have shown that a bee’s memories of the previous day become strengthened when the insects are exposed to elements of these memories while they are deeply asleep. Perhaps bees dream about the experiences of the previous day?
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Old 11-13-19, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Only if you assume people are completely mechanistic

(P&R here we come...)

IIRC, Go"del Escher Bach comes to one conclusion about the possibility of real consciousness/intelligence (maybe what you mean by 'spiritual') coming from AI, and Roger Penrose's The Emperor's New Mind comes to the opposite conclusion. Based on the title, I guess Penrose says no and Hofstadter said yes? But based on Godel and strange loops and stuff, it seems more likely Hofstadter said there's something essentially undecidable (as in halting-problem really impossible) about the human mind that computers will never be able to achieve. Maybe they both said no.

I'm also put in mind of something by Asimov (bicentennial man?) in which two robots are locked in a closet for ages and ages, and have a very slow philosophical conversation over the eons with their dwindling battery power, where they ruminate on the value of humanity vs themselves
The truth is we don't know enough about how consciousness works to know whether it can be replicated outside of human brains or not. I don't think Penrose's or Hofstadter's opinion should carry much more weight than yours or mine. We're talking about hunches here, which is fine because that's all we have; I think the reasoning behind the hunches is what's interesting.

We do know a few things, though:
  • We can model neural networks inside a computer. They can see, in the sense that your eye does the data gathering and your brain does the making sense of it including forming a representation of the data. A well trained NN can tell the difference between a dog and a panther. The people who wrote the code can't tell you how they do it.
  • Some monkeys have the concept of money. They make rational economic decisions, and they have a sense of fairness.
  • "Deep fakes" aren't just scary, they're shocking in that computers can do something that five years ago would have been called imagination. I mean I can imagine what one person would look like with another person's face, now software can show me.
  • With neural implants, a human can control a rat's tail by thinking - which to me suggests that thoughts are ultimately made of stuff.
  • Drugs like ecstasy, hallucinogens, and antidepressants apparently work, strongly suggesting that emotions and states of consciousness are ultimately made of stuff.
Human brains are the most complicated things in the known universe. Of course it won't be easy to make something similar. But the facts I just outlined seem convincing to me that there's no reason it couldn't be done in principal
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Old 11-13-19, 09:39 PM
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The human brain may be complicated but the human mind is mostly a mess of bad programming.

It wouldn't be difficult for AI to replace most human comments on news/views media articles. Doesn't take much intelligence to write "LOL u sux" or "your a russian troll" to every third commenter who put a little effort into what they wrote.

For that matter, Ray Bradbury's electric granny from "I Sing the Body Electric" could easily do better than a third of the human women of that age on Facebook. And half of the middle aged men on Facebook could be replaced by Joe, the Peter Boyle character from the 1970 movie of that name. Another quarter could be replaced by a bot programmed to behave like Frank Booth from Blue Velvet.
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Old 11-14-19, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The truth is we don't know enough about how consciousness works to know whether it can be replicated outside of human brains or not. I don't think Penrose's or Hofstadter's opinion should carry much more weight than yours or mine.
Sure, they're not neurologists. I think their opinion should carry more weight than ours in terms of what computers are capable of, but maybe they don't have as much to say about what computers would need to be capable of to replicate consciousness
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Old 11-14-19, 12:40 PM
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@RubeRad am I confused, or did you say you work as a software developer?
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Old 11-14-19, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
It's nice that we hope for a future in which we can ruin machines by giving them anxiety and self-doubt. I don't see an AI suddenly seeking to find the face of god. It will know who built it, it will know no power greater than that of man laid hands on it.
My computer got depressed so I gave it Zoloft and Prozac but I found Paxil is what it really needed. Now it wants to self medicate with alcohol all these beer commercial pop up adds.
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Old 11-14-19, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
@RubeRad am I confused, or did you say you work as a software developer?
Yes, but I wouldn't say I'm more (or even as) qualified to discuss the limits of computability than Hofstadter or Penrose.
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Old 11-14-19, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
This is why self awareness is overrated. Especially when combined with just enough intelligence to be dangerous.
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