Saturday, 27 July 2013

Idiotic Searching For Smartness Genes

On 16th July 2013 Wired published an article about the genetics of IQ regarding the possible creation of "superbabies." Zhao Bowen, a so-called child prodigy, is leading a "multimillion-dollar research effort to solve a genetic mystery" regarding what makes people smart, but is Zhao really qualified for such a task. Is he really smart? Is his research smart or dumb?

According the article Zhao smokes: "He makes small talk with a girl, bums a cigarette off her." It is a minor superficial detail but I feel strongly smoking is very far from being smart. This flawed approach to the health of his body could be the tip of the iceberg regarding deeper intellectual flaws pertaining to what constitutes smart thinking. If Zhao thinks smoking is smart I wonder what other harmful traits he deems acceptable or compatible with smartness.

I'll publish the remainder of my views on this subject via H+ magazine. Coming soon.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Snowden-Assange Pre-Singularity Futility

The efforts of Assange and Snowden are admirable but I'm not convinced "enormous repercussions" (see comments) have occurred or will occur. People are too apathetic, too unaware, too oblivious, this is the problem, therefore hypothetically you could explain to voters how the USA-NSA-CIA are pumping mind-control drugs into the air and water supply, a revelation which would lead to a pretence of outrage and action to stop it, but in reality nothing would really change because people have become happy slaves, contented cattle, or maybe people were always this way.

Analogously, consider the end of the Truman Show where two security guards are cheering for Truman's rebellion. They don't really understand the rebellion, thus when Truman escapes, their sentiments are approximately: "Right, OK, what's on the other channel." They have no real awareness of what is happening, Truman does not profoundly change them, the horror of it, the decadence of society, it does not penetrate their unaware minds even if they show a pretence of support for Truman, thus they might grab another slice pizza or get a another cup of coffee but they will not wake up.

So considering the general state of typical human minds, the actions of Snowden and Assange are largely futile but due to the principle of brave action, which is undertaken regardless of success or failure, I applaud their actions. When Winston Smith begins writing his diary, he realises the futility of his actions because - he muses - if people understood his actions they wouldn't need his diary and those who don't understand the horror of 1984 will not understand his diary or any revolutionary diary no matter how it is written:

"How could you communicate with the future? It was impossible. Either the future would resemble the present in which case it would not listen to him, or it would be different from it, and his predicament would be meaningless."

Orwell, Winston Smith - 1984

Human stupidity is very deeply entrenched therefore anything less than a colossal intelligence explosion will be futile, which means the Singularity is the only hope for shaking people out of their intellectual malaise. If you want to comment, do so via the KurzweilAI Forum or via this G+ post.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Power Over People Isn't Truly A Resource

Someone recently suggested utopia is impossible because people will always want power over other people. They claimed power over people is a resource which people will always want. If "power over people" is a resource then scarcity or stupidity is a resource, thus you might say Post-Scarcity is impossible because people will suffer from a scarcity of scarcity if everything ceases to be scarce.

Now let's consider what this means. I do recognise it is difficult to grasp Post-Scarcity, it took me a while to grasp the ramifications, so first try what imagine what power over people actually means. Domination of other people is a power somewhat synonymous with the power to kill people, this domination is only a resource when intelligence is very limited. Looking into the future we can see how the ability to kill people doesn't constitute a resource, a profit, killing people is a symptom of limited resources, or to express it another way consider how rape is relatively scarce but rape is generally not considered a resource in need of amplification.

We are addressing an issue of control, oppression, where freedom is limited, the domination of people via force, threat, or fear. When power is scarce people can become resources in varying degrees, but when power in limitless there is no profit in having power over people, the oppression becomes redundant, deflation to zero, null value, no market, thus power over people is not really a resource, if we look to the future, it is actually a symptom of insufficient resources, it is a symptom of scarcity similar how currently (circa 2013) the war-machine arms industry is profitable but not really a resource.

The bad aspects of humans are not actually resources, if we look into the future we see how they are symptoms of insufficient resources, thus people only need to be dominated when there is insufficient material wealth, people need to be dominated because dominance of others allows the dominator to acquire a greater portion of limited wealth, but there are more efficient ways to obtain greater wealth with zero harm. Dominance is also a symptom of insufficient personal intelligence, or insufficient emotional intelligence. Emotional sensitivity (empathy, morality, virtue, sympathy, humanity) and intellectual capacity within humans are valuable resources because they enrich our existence thus dominance is obsolete when our minds have sufficiently expanded in combination with our scarcity of material wealth being sufficiently transcended.

Limited technological proficiency (scarce machine intelligence) and limited personal intelligence means currently humans are resources (wage slavery), similar to how war is a resource, or the arms trade is a profitable resource, but when machines can be vastly more efficient than farmers there will be absolutely no profit, no incentive, to dominate farmers, there will be no profit in war or the arms trade when the endless resources of Space can easily be acquired without conflict instead of fighting over minuscule Earth resources. In the future there will be no profit in pollution-producing or otherwise harmful tools or harmful modes of existence.

Toxic aspects of existence are only deemed resources in situations of limited resources, thus vegetables grown in toxic soil, heavily coated in harmful pesticides, can have value in scarcity situations but when technology progresses sufficiently our primitive ways of life will be discarded, thus toxic cures for cancer via chemotherapy will will cease to be resources when utter harmless nanobots can painlessly and instantly cure any disease. The progress of technology therefore means a heart transplant is only a valuable resource in a situation of limited resources similar how in bygone years the amputation of a limb regarding bacterial infection could have been deemed an utterly essential resource but now we often have sufficient technological intelligence to apply a better antibiotic resource thus the value of amputation is diminishing to the inevitable point, in the not too distant future, where amputation will be a wholly worthless medical resource, amputation will not actually be a resources, it will be utterly obsolete and barbaric, similar to how costly population-producing cars will be replaced by totally Green and inexpensive solar-powered transportation.

Power over people is comparable to wasting a large amount of food to feed slaves who farm the land. It is vastly more profitable for machines to do the work of humans, human resources are ceasing to be valuable, power over people is becoming obsolete because non-sentient machines consume less energy. Domination of machines is more profitable than domination of humans because non-sentient machines don't need meal or sleep breaks, they have no desires. Via sophisticated automation, machines can even work in the dark or cold without any complaint thus lighting an heating costs can be bypassed and wages don't need to be paid.

I understand why people fear technology can entail tyranny because it is difficult, due to only ever having known scarcity of resources, to see how all conflict-oppression arises due to resource scarcity, it is difficult to envisage a world without scarcity. A world without scarcity runs counter to the entire history of evolution, so we encounter difficulty imagining how all resources will essentially be limitless, which means all hostility will be utterly obsolete, which is perhaps a key reason why the Singularity is singular, it is very strange, mind-blowing, indeed.

Humans will cease to be valuable in the commodity sense, but we will be priceless, of immense value. The smile of a loved one costs nothing financially whereas emotionally the smile of someone you love is perhaps the most precious thing in the world. Merely because something is free this does not mean it is worthless or dispensable. Post-Scarcity means money will be obsolete because everything will be free therefore nobody will need to work. Resources only cost money due to scarcity, money is a method of restricting access to limited resources whereas limitless resources require no restrictions.

This is not communism, if anything it is anarchy but in actuality is it beyond all politics because all forms of politics are products of scarcity. All governments will be obsolete because governments only exist to regulate scarcity. We are considering a total decentralization of power, total empowerment of each individual, power will cease to be scarce, thus each person can 3D-print anything they want, for example a super-intelligence-spaceship enabling them to travel anywhere in the universe.

So in the future, by 2045 at the latest, AI will be smarter than humans, but prior to 2045, sometimes around the late 20s, we should start seeing notable improvements in our civilization. In the year 2045 and beyond humans will become very diverse, there will be radical self-directed evolution. By 2045 the majority of beings will live in Space beyond Earth. Due to Space colonisation, which will open up access to essentially limitless resources, all war-conflict will cease because war-conflict depends wholly on scarcity, thus there will be no hostile competitiveness where one group of people must be defeated for the other to survive.

There could be a sight increase in tyranny before the efficiency of advanced technology really starts to kick-in but those temporary aspects of tyranny, occurring due to heavy technological investment before the profits are reaped, will soon be reverted, in fact with insightful awareness any possible temporary increases in tyranny can be avoided, if we can increase awareness so that it is very abundant, if we can decrease the scarcity of awareness.

Thankfully a growing number of people are starting to think about how artificial intelligence will change the world, which the following video demonstrates, we need to refine this growing awareness so that people can appreciate how utopia is inevitable.

If you have any comments please express your views via the G+ post which inspired me to write this blog-post, or you can comment via the Kurzweil AI forum, or send me a Tweet.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

George Dvorsky Fears Too Much Intelligence

Only in an age of deeply entrenched stupidity could colossal intelligence be feared, doubted, questioned as good. To set limits on how much intelligence can expand is anti-evolutionary. Truly, despite the deep level of societal stupidity, I am astounded anyone could suggest too much intelligence might be bad.

Incidentally, morality pills (empathy amplification) do not constitute intelligence, in fact morality pills are very immoral.

George asked "Is human super-intelligence a bad idea?" The problem is people generally don't understand intelligence.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Animal Consciousness SingularitryHub

I noticed an article on Singularity Hub, which stated non-human conciousness exists. The article then asked: "Now what?"

The answer is simple. All the "animals" can start using their "consciousness" to build ultra-advanced AGIs, quantum computers, nanobots, stem cell regenerative cures, and photonics processors. I'll ask the pigeons outside my window what they think about current graphene research, perhaps they will have some good ideas regarding novel research lines.

All animals have a level of intelligence, they are not rocks, even plants have been shown to do sums. A short while ago PhysOrg wrote: "New research shows that to prevent starvation at night, plants perform accurate arithmetic division. The calculation allows them to use up their starch reserves at a constant rate so that they run out almost precisely at dawn."

BUT, the intelligence, consciousness, self-awareness of a mouse or rabbit is very dim. The consciousness of lesser animals is essentially insignificant. In dolphins or apes their intelligence or consciousness is becoming more significant, perhaps to a point which cannot be ignored.

I am sure lesser animals have always been considered conscious, unless they have been knocked-out into unconsciousness, but animals typically don't exhibit human-level consciousness, which is what people mean when they say lesser animals don't exhibit consciousness. If robots have only a minimal amount if consciousness they will have little rights similar to how dogs do not have very many rights, but with increasing consciousness rights will increase.

Friday, 5 July 2013

Are Humans Too Stupid to Change?

I recently read a G+ post by Max Huijgen regarding Edward Snowden, which prompted me to post a comment about civilization, human intelligence. My sociological observations are worth repeating and embellishing here, via this blog-post, because they give an insight into why I'm interested in AI.

Max was making the point that Snowden had failed to present the PRISM spying issues successfully. I, however, feel Snowden's presentation is not at fault because regardless of how Snowden presented the issues people would soon stop thinking about the issues. The reason why the issues are hidden, or were hidden, and why the security services do what they do, is precisely because people are the way they are. The issue is not that the security services act maliciously, with impunity, contrary to the better natures of people, the security services are merely a symptom of flawed natures regarding typical people, so no matter how the issues are presented people would soon move from serious issues to trivialities because they simply don't want to know about serious issues. This means the mass desire for ignorance both creates and perpetuates the problems. The security services, the state of civilization, this situation exists because people are morons, people crave oblivion, ignorance, which is a 1984-strength similar to how people typically unwittingly think freedom is slavery.

Yes there is significant social-engineering to emphasize stupidity but this social-engineering is only successful because it has been unconsciously sanctioned by the general world population. Social-engineering of stupidity happens via mass consent, although many people are too stupid to recognise or remember how they gave and continue to give consent to stupidity-engineering. I do recognise how there is lots of intelligence in the world and I also recognise how every human possesses innate intelligence but innate human intelligence is latent in the majority of people. The large amount of intelligence we see via sci-tech does not mitigate he greater amount of stupidity. Despite the typical state of latent human intelligence I think people within their unawareness are nevertheless partially aware, but they cannot express their awareness intelligently thus they become deranged, which is why religions continue to be popular, it is why serious issues are trivialised. It is a messy situation perhaps best described as mass psychosis.

Human idiocy is severely pronounced in the year 2013, therefore governments, or people opposing governments, could reveal the most shocking abuses of rights and freedoms, for example torture, indefinite detention without trial, force-feeding prisoners, or other issues, but this news would soon fade into triviality. A combination of effective government propaganda, which plays upon a misguided sense of patriotism, the overbearing need to fight to the enemy, the need to focus on any enemy despite East Asia never actually being at war with Eurasia, the need for scapegoats, the blind need protect security-freedom at all costs, and the human desire for ignorance; this combination inevitably leads need to serious issues being trivialised or misunderstood.

This is the prime reason I focus on human level AI because I know humans are generally too dumb to change regardless of ANY information presented to them in ANY manner.

I'm sure Snowden was fully aware of the consequences, all the outcomes of his actions, in the manner of Winston Smith. I'm positive he was aware his actions would very likely be futile, but being a man of high principals he decided to act despite the likely outcome of futility. Thought crime does not entail death, thought crime is death, which means the conclusion is inevitable but via this analogy I am not stating Snowden will be killed, my point is merely regarding inevitable futility. He certainly realized his life would become a living nightmare, he is after all fully aware of what the security services do, he also realized people would soon trivialize the issues.

The only slight point where Snowden was perhaps misguided, is regarding the theoretical awareness of a potential nightmarish situation. My point is that despite the best imagination in the world the theoretical conceptualization of a nightmarish situation will fall short of the tangible real-life horror of it, thus a couple of years from now Snowden might start regretting his actions due to a prolonged nightmarish situation. Theoretical awareness of pain is nothing compared to actual pain.

I think Snowden's leaks were always going to go wrong no matter how the leaks happened, but considering the futility of raising awareness I think events regarding PRISM are the best we could have hoped for, so relatively I deem the presentation to be righter than right. Considering the general circumstances of our largely futile civilization, the impossibility of changing a world full of morons, Snowden's leaking is a great success. Snowden's leaking must be deemed to have gone wholly right despite to total wrongness of everything in the world.

This is why I pin my hopes on artificial intelligence, but I am aware AI could merely exhibit a level of stupidity common to humans, which means the intelligence of AI could be wholly quantity based instead of quality based, thus one super-intelligent AI brain could embody the equivalent of 20 billion human brains but 20 billion fools don't really constitute smartness in the slightest. Perhaps, however, the sheer force of numbers, brute processing power, will allow for at least a small amount of genuine smartness, or at least with 20 or 100 billion fools we will progress somewhat quicker. The best situation would be if each Strong-AI brain possessed brainpower comparable to 20 billion truly smart humans instead of 20 billion typical morons. We shall see what happens. Currently in our world many people who think they are smart are actually idiots. Allegedly smart humans often fail to demonstrate any significant reasoning ability.

If you want to comment, do so via the KurzweilAI Forum or via this G+ post. Note also this subsequent post on the theme of Snowden stupidity. 

Thursday, 4 July 2013

RSS For Google Alerts Died With Reader

On July 1st 2013 Google Reader died. There was collateral damage because the RSS feeds for Google Alerts died too. Apparently the RSS feeds for Google Alerts, which you could add to any Reader service, while the feeds existed, those feeds were tied into Google Reader thus when Reader died all RSS feeds for Alerts died too.

Google does offer RSS for search results IF it's a news search. Formerly I would've wrote: Go to Google News, search for something, then note the RSS icon at the bottom left, but now we must strike that info.

Google have now made their RSS feature for Google News more complicated, thus you now need to personalise Google News, which means you click the cog in Google News, then add the search term for the feed you want, then after the personalised search term is added to your personalised Google News topics, click that link then you will see the RSS feed icon at the bottom left.

I fear Google will abolish all RSS options eventually so it might be simpler if you go to Bing, which has a great format, very simple, for acquiring feeds via either standard search or news search:

Standard search:

News search:

If you are looking for a place to read Futuristic News, note I have nearly finished creating Futuristic Reader.

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