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Transhumanist religions?

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Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:
Baalbamoth wrote:
as far as AI goes, na... I side with moravec. The AIs will start small as attorneys scientists doctors and other professionals. we'll become so use to turning to them to solve every problem eventually we'll put them in charge, and then they'll build a really nice zoo for us to live in. no wars, no extermination, a gradual acceptance of our inferiorty promoted through pure self interest.
That would be great. However as you read the various thinkers on the subject, most would say that Moravec greatly underestimates their power and the friendliness problem. And I just can't bring myself to think anything but probabilisticly. I have very little faith that anyone can predict the future accurately and consistently, and even if there was I have zero faith that I could pick out the one accurate predictor. I doubt you can honestly claim that either. You and Moravec predicted the future accurately and everyone with different opinions are wrong, what do you think the odds of that are? I find it likely that AI will very quickly become very powerful. I find it likely they will be very hard to control (there is no reason to assume you can simply program in 3 laws of robotics), especially since a self-upgrading AI can develop much faster than a self-upgrading AI that we have to ensure stays friendly as it improves itself. I can also imagine Moravec or Kurzweil style utopian development (where I actually think Kurzweil gave a 30% chance of AI wiping us out). Hey, if that happens, great. But I'm not going to pretend they or anyone has any real knowledge of how sage or dangerous AI will be. There are good arguments that might turn out to be true that AI will be extremely dangerous, both short and long term (say how posthumans with human values of enjoyment and such is not competitive against optimized agents who will simply outcompete the posthumans). This means we should make a very solid effort trying to keep humanity from being wiped out. Are you really sure enough of Moravec's prediction that you think we should gamble our future on it?
jhfurnish jhfurnish's picture
No problem.
If you can wait a bit, I can give you more. This campaign seems to have died out from schedule clashes (I was running it online) but I think I'll start it up again locally. In the meantime, I already have characters and other elements worked out. I'm more than ready to share them out. If anyone is interested in creating a new fanzine ala The Eye, I'm willing to let them put this material out for the EP fanbase.
Baalbamoth Baalbamoth's picture
Yes
Go to a kid living in a box in india by the side of fecies polluted creek who finds rotten food to eat by picking through a mountain of two week old garbage that gets dropped off every day and ask him if he thinks his future is worth the gamble, then realize the number of kids just like him is growing exponentially. We just don't have time to go to extreme and irrational means to assure there is absolutely no possibility of AI rebellion. 30% chance of extermination? That's better than the 100% chance I expect to happen when terrorists eventually figure out cheap gene sequencers can create multipule pandemics from the genetic codes available to anyone on the internet, or any number of exestential threats tied to cheap, advanced, and available high technology that will be available as we progress... Did you read about the 3/D printed gun? So much for airport security... Just an example of how because of free access to information the possibility of self destruction grows every day, but what's the alternative authoritarian regimes? Total control of all human communication? Building prisons to live in instead of cities? No... Just roll the dice, 60% chance of utopia sounds pretty good to me considering the alternatives.
"what do I want? The usual — hundreds of grandchildren, complete dominion over the known worlds, and the pleasure of hearing that all my enemies have died in highly improbable accidents that cannot be connected to me."
Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:Go to a kid
Baalbamoth wrote:
Go to a kid living in a box in india by the side of fecies polluted creek who finds rotten food to eat by picking through a mountain of two week old garbage that gets dropped off every day and ask him if he thinks his future is worth the gamble, then realize the number of kids just like him is growing exponentially.
You need to take a look at the actual numbers instead of listening to anecdotes from some random kid. The human condition has been steadily improving on practically all parameters and everything points towards this continuing. Just about the only exception has been sub-Saharan Africe, where a particularly nasty combination of culture and HIV has managed to curtail progress.
Quote:
We just don't have time to go to extreme and irrational means to assure there is absolutely no possibility of AI rebellion. 30% chance of extermination? That's better than the 100% chance I expect to happen when terrorists eventually figure out cheap gene sequencers can create multipule pandemics from the genetic codes available to anyone on the internet, or any number of exestential threats tied to cheap, advanced, and available high technology that will be available as we progress... Did you read about the 3/D printed gun? So much for airport security... Just an example of how because of free access to information the possibility of self destruction grows every day, but what's the alternative authoritarian regimes? Total control of all human communication? Building prisons to live in instead of cities? No... Just roll the dice, 60% chance of utopia sounds pretty good to me considering the alternatives.
This is just all sloppy thinking. Kurzweil's 30% certainly includes an attempt at friendly AI, as he advocates it strongly. A careless approach would be much riskier. And who says that he is right? Guns on planes is a threat on such a ridiculously small scale that it isn't even worth mentioning. Bioterrorism may be an existential threat. It isn't just the terrorists that get better tools, we get better ways to protect ourselves too, and killing everyone seems a stretch in any acase. And we're not sure it will ever become a relevant threat, whereas the problems with AI are as good as certain to emerge. Your cognitive bias is quite well documented by the way. As the casualties at risk become large enough, we begin to greatly underappreciate the risk. One death is a tragedy, one million deaths is a statistic.
nezumi.hebereke nezumi.hebereke's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:nazumi-
Baalbamoth wrote:
nazumi- couple of points of contention... an "atheist" is one who lacks a belief in god, not one who does not believe in god a small but important point... I consider myself a "anti-theist" because I dont believe god as anyone defines him/her/it can exist, but atheist is the easy answer most people understand.
Not according to the dictionary. Atheist - a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. (American Heritage) or a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. (Miriam-Webster). The etymology is a - referring to without, or contrary, theo - meaning god, ist - meaning a participant or believer. So literally it would come out as anti-theist. What you may be thinking of is agnostic, "one who is not committed to believing in either the existence or the nonexistence of God or a god" However, the use of the word 'atheist' has mellowed a bit with time, and its definition expanded with use. Specifying yourself as a fundamentalist atheist does make sense, so that you stand out. And as you brought up, groups like humanists, naturalists, skeptics, etc. will necessarily not encompass all atheists, which is good. Since atheists is 'all people who don't believe in a god', defining it as a negative, you will necessarily get a lot of people who have nothing else in common. Just like the category of 'people who don't eat hamburgers' will include devout hindus, vegans, etc. Defining people by something they don't have isn't very descriptive, which is precisely why 'atheist communities' tend to struggle, compared to humanist, naturalist, secularist, skeptic, 'anti-theism' communities. Another broad point of order; atheists do not have a monopoly on reason and rationality, nor does being an atheist automatically bestow you with these traits. While I certainly appreciate people raising awareness of the flaws of religions, one needs to be careful not to adopt those same flaws by generalizing and dismissing educated people who may disagree with you.
Decivre Decivre's picture
nezumi.hebereke wrote:Not
nezumi.hebereke wrote:
Not according to the dictionary. Atheist - a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. (American Heritage) or a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. (Miriam-Webster). The etymology is a - referring to without, or contrary, theo - meaning god, ist - meaning a participant or believer. So literally it would come out as anti-theist.
Actually, it's had many meanings throughout history. The original use of the term by Romans was in reference to Christians, as they didn't believe in the Roman gods. The term "atheist" was later used in reference to Protestants and the Cathars. It's usage for skeptics can only be traced back to the 19th century, which we should note is the same moment in history when dictionaries were invented. That said, I think there's already a soft definition right there in the examples you gave. Disbelief is merely doubt, and doubt is what most atheists have. I have about as much passion for my disbelief in god as I do for my disbelief in Santa Claus. I don't leave out cookies or try to lay out landing strips on my roof, but I also certainly don't make it my life's goal to shit on the beliefs of any child that thinks him real.
nezumi.hebereke wrote:
What you may be thinking of is agnostic, "one who is not committed to believing in either the existence or the nonexistence of God or a god"
One does not preclude the other. Simply ask yourself this: "do you believe in absolute knowledge, and that a god is knowable?" If your answer is no, then you're an agnostic. Now ask yourself "if I was a gambling man, would I be willing to bet that there is a god, or that there isn't?" If you bet "no", then congratulations... you're an agnostic atheist.
nezumi.hebereke wrote:
However, the use of the word 'atheist' has mellowed a bit with time, and its definition expanded with use. Specifying yourself as a fundamentalist atheist does make sense, so that you stand out. And as you brought up, groups like humanists, naturalists, skeptics, etc. will necessarily not encompass all atheists, which is good. Since atheists is 'all people who don't believe in a god', defining it as a negative, you will necessarily get a lot of people who have nothing else in common. Just like the category of 'people who don't eat hamburgers' will include devout hindus, vegans, etc. Defining people by something they don't have isn't very descriptive, which is precisely why 'atheist communities' tend to struggle, compared to humanist, naturalist, secularist, skeptic, 'anti-theism' communities.
Atheist communities tend to do... alright. But there is no real group consensus or even sense of political unity. Despite the fact that skeptical atheists tend to stand for a lot of the same political views (separation of church and state, secular science-based education, the removal of religious agendas in politics), most of them try to achieve these goals by wildly different means (I know I certainly didn't condone the suing of the WTC memorial because it had a cross-shaped piece of rubble). So you'll often have atheists that agree on the broader goals, but not on the methods that groups use to achieve them.
nezumi.hebereke wrote:
Another broad point of order; atheists do not have a monopoly on reason and rationality, nor does being an atheist automatically bestow you with these traits. While I certainly appreciate people raising awareness of the flaws of religions, one needs to be careful not to adopt those same flaws by generalizing and dismissing educated people who may disagree with you.
Absolutely agreed, and I often have a problem with the people who claim to be "anti-theistic" for this very sentiment. I know of people who do the same sort of discrimination against religious people as is often done in reverse. It's one of the key reasons I often keep my lack of religion private, even from those who are atheists.
Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age. [url=http://bit.ly/2p3wk7c]Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.[/url]
Shredicine Shredicine's picture
Whoa
This thread is getting heavy duty. Good reads, in my opinion.
Who are we, but slaves to our own personal interests?
Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Decivre wrote:I often have a
Decivre wrote:
I often have a problem with the people who claim to be "anti-theistic" for this very sentiment. I know of people who do the same sort of discrimination against religious people as is often done in reverse. It's one of the key reasons I often keep my lack of religion private, even from those who are atheists.
Let's just be clear on one thing though. Religious people don't get any special treatment just because their opinions have a religious basis. If you're forcing your daughter to cover her face or oppose abortion, use of condoms, stem cell research or the teaching of evolution, you're a douche bag.
Decivre Decivre's picture
Smokeskin wrote:Let's just be
Smokeskin wrote:
Let's just be clear on one thing though. Religious people don't get any special treatment just because their opinions have a religious basis. If you're forcing your daughter to cover her face or oppose abortion, use of condoms, stem cell research or the teaching of evolution, you're a douche bag.
Oh definitely. But I tend to find that the justification follows from the act, not the opposite. As someone who has met a multitude of religious people with backwards beliefs, I can attest that in the majority of cases their abhorrent attitudes are primarily based on disgust and backwards views. Any justification they pull out of a religious text is merely them trying to square a moral circle. Which is one perk to atheism, in my opinion. If I were a devoutly religious man, I might be able to have discriminatory views and beliefs, which I could then justify with my faith. As an atheist, I either have to have a rational reason for my views, or simply come to grips with the fact that I, myself, am a prick. It gives me a large amount of incentive to be an ethical person.
Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age. [url=http://bit.ly/2p3wk7c]Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.[/url]
Baalbamoth Baalbamoth's picture
heh heh
Smokesin- like the gambling man explanation, though it dosent go through the possiblity of the agnostic theist... "I have no reason for my belief in god, yet I do believe in god." (facepalm) also, for all the bad wrap religions get... I do believe they make the communities stronger, even if it is a strength in unquestioning ignorance. you'll never see an atheist fly a plane into a building to forward the cause of atheism. I sort of suspect that doyle was right and that all societies are temporary and mankind's true natural state is in barbarism. when the collapse, armageddon, singularity, or whatever hits us and ends civility... religions will become much more important... again... goes right back to Carlin's two important questions... do you believe in god? do you believe in my god? answer wrong and brutal head bonking will commense.
"what do I want? The usual — hundreds of grandchildren, complete dominion over the known worlds, and the pleasure of hearing that all my enemies have died in highly improbable accidents that cannot be connected to me."
Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:I sort of
Baalbamoth wrote:
I sort of suspect that doyle was right and that all societies are temporary and mankind's true natural state is in barbarism.
Based on what? The continuously improving human condition? If our society should turn out to be temporary it seems extremenly unlikely that should be because of some natural tendency to drift towards barbarism (since the exact opposite is happening), but rather some catastrophic event due to rising complexity and capability.
Baalbamoth Baalbamoth's picture
Really?
Egypt, Spain, Grece,Itally, all of south america, all of the middle east, all of africa, india, china, south east asia, you reading the news recently? I dont know where your getting your info but the human condition seems far from continuously improving if anything massive daily riots all accross the globe targeting the established governments seems to be the news of the day, every day for the past couple of years in fact. The Roman empire, Ancient Egypt, The Greek city states, The Ming/manchurian Dynasty, The Azteks, The Assyerians, The Persian empire, The Ottoman Empire, I mean... can you tell me of an ancient civilization that has not decended into barbarism? if anything it seems were in a period of a long build up before things break hard.
"what do I want? The usual — hundreds of grandchildren, complete dominion over the known worlds, and the pleasure of hearing that all my enemies have died in highly improbable accidents that cannot be connected to me."
Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Who cares about the news? Who
Who cares about the news? Who cares about some random people protesting? Who says they know what's going on? Let's look at the facts instead, here visualized so they're easy to understand: http://www.gapminder.org/world/#$majorMode=chart$is;shi=t;ly=2003;lb=f;il=t;fs=11;al=30;stl=t;st=t;nsl=t;se=t$wst;tts=C$ts;sp=5.59290322580644;ti=2011$zpv;v=0$inc_x;mmid=XCOORDS;iid=phAwcNAVuyj1jiMAkmq1iMg;by=ind$inc_y;mmid=YCOORDS;iid=phAwcNAVuyj2tPLxKvvnNPA;by=ind$inc_s;uniValue=8.21;iid=phAwcNAVuyj0XOoBL_n5tAQ;by=ind$inc_c;uniValue=255;gid=CATID0;by=grp$map_x;scale=log;dataMin=283;dataMax=110808$map_y;scale=lin;dataMin=18;dataMax=87$map_s;sma=49;smi=2.65$cd;bd=0$inds=;modified=75 So let's not get carried away with people being upset that their pensions took a hit in the financial crisis, that they're temporarily unable to find a job, that we need to adapt to the competition from the drastic productivity gains in many emergent markets. I went from wealthy to struggling too, but that doesn't mean the world is going to hell.
Baalbamoth Baalbamoth's picture
uh, no.
your website ends in 2011, this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGbyDgD-oks covers how the world econ took a dive in 2008 and it has not fully recovered to the 2007 upswing, emerging economies are not doing terrible, actually their poised pretty well because their money is diversified, and they spend most of their money at corner stores and they are not tied into the global econ and they don't have tons of debt, But the American and European governments are attempting to spend their way out of the financial crisis, most economists believe the debt we are accruing, along with the unbacked money were printing is putting us on an economic teeter totter and eventually its going to switch up and hit the dirt. total global economic collapse the only question being when. by the way... when we started this thread I mentioned transhumanist Mormons... well the nightmare has come true... wait till you get this knock on your door.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pl1xRIabscc
"what do I want? The usual — hundreds of grandchildren, complete dominion over the known worlds, and the pleasure of hearing that all my enemies have died in highly improbable accidents that cannot be connected to me."
Smokeskin Smokeskin's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:your website
Baalbamoth wrote:
your website ends in 2011, this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGbyDgD-oks covers how the world econ took a dive in 2008 and it has not fully recovered to the 2007 upswing, emerging economies are not doing terrible, actually their poised pretty well because their money is diversified, and they spend most of their money at corner stores and they are not tied into the global econ and they don't have tons of debt, But the American and European governments are attempting to spend their way out of the financial crisis, most economists believe the debt we are accruing, along with the unbacked money were printing is putting us on an economic teeter totter and eventually its going to switch up and hit the dirt. total global economic collapse the only question being when.
2007 was a peak, sure. Followed by the mother of all crisises. Who says we need to be at 2007 levels now for there not to be an upward trend. But look at the data: http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/fredgraph.png?&id=GDPC1&scale... And you tell me that the US is not still on an upward trend. In 20 years, you'll be much richer than in 2007. And you have to understand that when you listen to traders, they talk a different language. They're not talking about the world going under. They're talking about fluctuations that, in the larger scheme of things, are inconsequential but blow up financial institutions because they're highly leveraged.
Decivre Decivre's picture
Baalbamoth wrote:Smokesin-
Baalbamoth wrote:
Smokesin- like the gambling man explanation, though it dosent go through the possiblity of the agnostic theist... "I have no reason for my belief in god, yet I do believe in god." (facepalm)
A more accurate way to state it would be "I can't say for sure whether there is or isn't a god, but my heart says that there must be one, so I believe". Sure, they have no logical reasons to believe in god, but I have no logical reasons to have the friends I have. Sometimes people make decisions on emotion. It's human nature.
Baalbamoth wrote:
also, for all the bad wrap religions get... I do believe they make the communities stronger, even if it is a strength in unquestioning ignorance. you'll never see an atheist fly a plane into a building to forward the cause of atheism. I sort of suspect that doyle was right and that all societies are temporary and mankind's true natural state is in barbarism. when the collapse, armageddon, singularity, or whatever hits us and ends civility... religions will become much more important... again... goes right back to Carlin's two important questions... do you believe in god? do you believe in my god? answer wrong and brutal head bonking will commense.
You won't see someone do something in the name of atheism because atheism isn't a thing. It's the absence of a thing. We do science to forward science, we speak against religion to forward rationality... but no one ever does anything for "the lack of something". And that's why I dislike the use of the label atheist. It's like listing "bald" as a hair color, "empty sockets" as an eye color, or "I have no arms" as a type of hand dominance. There has to be a better term under which to unify the skeptical community.
Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age. [url=http://bit.ly/2p3wk7c]Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.[/url]

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