November 4, 2009

Link dump for 2009.11.04

From the four corners of the web:
  • Toward a meaningful definition of posthuman sentience | Machines Like Us
    As we get closer and closer to developing artificial general intelligence, I feel it is necessary to highlight an important limitation of our anthropocentric perspective. While we sometimes have the capacity to treat other species of life in humane ways, we often stumble when it comes to categorizing non-human intelligence. We cannot help but ascribe anthropomorphic qualities to that which we view to be intelligent, and we are virtually unable to imagine intelligence that lacks such qualities. In the relatively near future, however, we're going to live in a world with intelligent robots, uploaded minds, and other transhumans; it will be necessary to alter our perceptions of what those entities represent.
  • Resilience Fail | Open the Future
    The use of URL-shortening services is a classic example of short-term need trumping long-term resilience.
  • Singularity Summit 2009 Videos Now Available | Accelerating Future
    The videos for Singularity Summit 2009 are now available at Vimeo. The few that are missing are either still awaiting confirmation of permission or the speaker asked for video not to be posted of their talk.
  • How to Stop Being a Workaholic | Zen Habits
    Reader Carolyn recently asked, "How can an achievement-motivated workaholic learn to back off, relax, de-stress, and feel good about doing it? I am too driven!"
  • Keeping the Door interviews Greg Egan about his upcoming book, brain mapping and AI
    Greg Egan is one of Australia's top science fiction authors, with seven novels under his belt and a slew of collections and short stories under his belt. His 1998 novella Oceanic won the 1999 Hugo Award for Best Novella.
  • AI Spacesuits Turn Astronauts Into Cyborg Biologists | Wired Science
    Equipped with wearable AI systems and digital eyes that see what human eyes can't, space explorers of the future could be not just astronauts, but "cyborg astrobiologists."
  • Robot Armada Could Explore Alien Worlds | Astrobiology Magazine
    Some scientists believe that we are on the brink of big changes in planetary exploration. Future robotic explorers might be nothing like what we see today, and the new technologies could have benefits for astrobiologists.
  • $39B needed to cut child pneumonia deaths: UN | CBC News
    It would take $39 billion US to save the lives of 5.3 million children who will otherwise die of pneumonia by 2015, the United Nations said Monday.


fallingupthesky said...

Now what I need is "How to survive living a workaholic's lifestyle when you aren't one but don't have much choice in the matter".

Duncan said...

Reading the headline "Machines Like Us" ...

If those machines will be -- seriously -- *like* us -- like several billions of human beings already here on earth --, then ... well ... I think, we will not need those machines. They will take away valuable real estate, and -- the greatest sin -- the artificial intelligence next door will be as boring as my neighbors are already today.

But, I know, only some of the researchers want to create machines like us -- an unreflecting attempt. Others want to improve certain aspects relative to human beings: intelligence, strength, health, duration of life, etc. (or everything in quotation marks).

Let us assume an autonomous, artificially intelligent, sentient machine, being substantially more intelligent than the most intelligent human beings, being able to exist (or "live", if you want) with no definite endpoint, and being able to develop itself. I think, these preconditions will change the mind and the ethic of this machine very much. After some time it will "behave" in a very interesting way, and it will "treat" us in a very strange way. At least these future times will not be boring.

If artificially intelligent machines, posthuman sentient beings, or whatever, then -- please -- *not* like us!