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Old 12-08-2012, 12:57 PM
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Default Re: Ensign Steve waxes philosophical on the Singularity, a thrad by Ensign Steve

Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
Oh, OK.

I think I was going to say that, like, yeah, while these developments are normal and explicable, they are still an extremely big deal. So while I disagree that they're literally beyond human comprehension (that's limited by time and resources, not ability), which is the standard tipping point, they do have the power to enhance human potential to an extent we haven't seen before.
In a sense, they are beyond human comprehension (there are so many interpretations of every word). Time and resources are limited, but it's also a societal problem (we are science-fiction nurds, so let's say the neural network of our species super-organism is dysfunctional and because of that the information processing.. OK forget that, you know what I mean).

As a society, we don't seem to have that much of an idea of what we're doing there. Actually, ideas abound, but they don't translate into effective action. We are in the middle of a disaster, we have mountains of good data about it, but the information processing is just fucked up. People still behave a lot like a herd of zombies, so it takes only small pushes in particular directions by the professional perception-manipulators ("PR industry") to control everything.

So we have a case where it couldn't be more obvious and the consequences couldn't really be any worse, and it doesn't work. How then are people going to understand the wider implications of letting shiny little things track you and delegate your thinking to server farms, I mean communicating with your friends and twittering and googling and whatever LOL. It's completely hopeless when it's fun and everybody around you is doing it. So in that sense, it's already beyond human comprehension.

However, we have definitely gotten to a saturation point. We carry extremely powerful computers with at least limited AI functions in our pockets and all scattered throughout our homes, we have computers operating our vehicles and even our bodies. And that is definitely something to be excited and also worried about. Not because the computers themselves are going to become self aware and rise up against us or anything, but because there's another digital divide up past that first one, where there are people who understand and operate and control and manipulate those intelligent systems, and those who are operated and controlled and manipulated by them; and if we don't have a robust and transparent system of oversight put into place to govern those things, it's not really going to matter whether it's self-aware robots or just people operating regular robots that rise up against us.
They don't have to rise up against us, we have to rise up against them. They are already in control. Let's call the locked-down, remotely-controlled devices with their secret programming and malicious features the robots. They are robots; they are not controlled by you, they are controlled by someone else. They are controlled by Skynet, and they spy on you. They spy on you and they hurt you. How is that?
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Thanks, from:
chunksmediocrites (12-09-2012), Ensign Steve (12-08-2012), lisarea (12-08-2012), SR71 (12-12-2012)
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