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Well We can make it sorta of a....System file

So.....Atacking Human has caused a invalid page fault in module 125.90 your robot will shut down imeditly, if atacking prosists please contact the manufactur

-Details-

Make a base of their program so whever they make action they have to acount for one of those rules, Force wire it into the posotronic brain...so if they do atack a humen or ect it causes them to stop working, conciously and subconciously. So even if they overcome it and atack a humen it shuts them off..

Each program would have to acount for those set of rules, if it dosnt it simply wont work.

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1. I don't see how that is possible, but we may not hold the same perception of what constitutes intelligence. Mine, while probably not entirely accurate, crosses over with sentience, free will, and the capacity to learn. Show me a computer that can go against its own programming, "think" outside of its own parameters, and only then will I consider it a true intelligence. In other words our different motives i.e. our programs can conflict. We only go with the stronger motive i.e. the overriding program.

2. Actually that wasn't the match I was referring to. ;) It doesn't really matter, though. I'm well aware that computers will perpetually outdo humans in a broad number of areas, but, by definition, there are some things they can never do.

3. And who designed the machines that can design and program each other? Who made the machines that make microchips? No matter how you trace it, people made the machines. As to your last statement, I was speaking about abstract concepts. You know, the addage that one can only create from within themself?

4. You refer to the ability to sense, I refer to the ability to perceive, assume, and understand, and then decide. We can understand things that are completely beyond our 'programming', be it genetic or environmental. And we can go against our 'programming' at will. Every day fire fighters go against every instinct and enter burning buildings completely aware that they may not make it out alive, and their efforts might be futile or pointless anyway.

1) I don't think a human being can go against its programming. To suppose otherwise is to suppose human beings do things at random, for no reason at all. Obviously when we do something its because of motives, for a reason, and that comes from our genes and enviroment.

2) Such as?

3) And that's irrelevant. We can design submarines that can go thousands of feet under water, and cars that go 60 mph, but we by ourselves can do neither.

4) Firefighters aren't going against every instinct but are actually following it. In nature animals sacrifice themselves all the time for their community and family. There is hence an instinctive basis for such action likely reinforced in his enviroment by training and society. They also have a conscience that is something with a biological basis. Also what do you mean we understand things beyond our programming? We can only understand what we have the capacity to understand.

In the end it seems to me your main problem with AI is philosophical, mainly that you seem to believe in free will. I would hence direct you to my argument concerning free will and determinism thread.

http://www.dune2k.com/forum/?board=34;action=display;threadid=10642

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We can actually go against our programming. Just like ACE said, firefighters, cops, and doctors do things that risk the lives of humans. Even they can die in the process. It isn't a law or rule they follow. When a building is burning, humans will still try to help people inside, even if the chances of coming out alive is thin. Just like laws and regulations, we can break those.

I find a problem with Asimov's rules. I believe his rules are only applied to robots (robots in my sence is that they follow programming, AI does not). Logically, if the robot is not programmed to kill a person, it will not. But, an AI must think outside of those rules. Why? A machine (AI) must know, make decissions, even feel, the law and morality humans do, to not kill a human, or another lifeform of it's own construction. If a machine does not understand that, or if a machine has bars or regulations not to think in that direction, it will simply not be an AI.

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Due Doc at this point it just seems that you and ACE are engaged in circular reasoning...human's can go against their programming because they can.

I have already shown that there is a precedence in nature for programming that causes a person or thing to risk his or her life for good reason.

What ACE and Dude Doc on the other hand imply humans go against their motives for no reason. That people do things randomly. Do you really think that? That people do things completely at random? That you may starting killing and pillaging one day for no reason at all?

If that's true how can you trust anyone? They may just turn against you for no reason; it's all random.

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Dude_doc, those rules are only applied to robots with positronic brains, so no they would not be possible to think outside of the rules. In the books, the robots terminate when in a conflict of rules (such as, they must harm a person to save the person).

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1. I'm not saying we always do things at random, but that we can do things at random. To suggest otherwise is to suggest that we are total slaves to the balance of our genetics and outside influences. To suggest otherwise is like saying that every move of our life might as well have already been played out. People make millions of decisions every day. When you get out of bed in the morning, which foot do you put down first? What is the precise balance of muscle contractions that brings you to a standing position? When you're along and aisle of a grocery store and you pull something off the shelves out of a group of the same thing, which one do you retreive? There's a certain degree of randomness in every little thing you do. The greater the implications of the decision, the more you think about the decision and the more it loses its random quality. A random decision would not be where you choose to go to college (I hope), but which part of the slice of watermelon you bite into first. If an android takes a bite of the watermelon it must first consider the best course of action as to how to proceed, weighing in the time allocated for eating the slice, the amount it can fit in its mouth coupled with the amount of chewing required to make the piece safe for swallowing. Then it has to decide whether it bites the tip straight on, or slightly to one side, takes several smaller bites at once, and once consumed, decide how far into the rind it will bite.

2. Independant learning.

3. And would a machine ever be compelled to explore the sea, or fly as a bird? Every invention started with an idea, a curiosity, and that's something that I don't think machines will ever be able to emulate. Even still, people can only create from within themselves. Though we cannot dive to the depths of the ocean or fly in the sky, we still had animals to base our devices off of. Inventors struggled perilously trying to achieve and perfect flight until they started making the wings of their airplaines with a slight curve atop the forward flank, harnessing the force known as lift. The motivation for this innovation? The wings of birds.

4. But the firefighter isn't sacrificing himself for his family and usually not for his community either. It's most likely people he's never met or seen before, and will probably never see again. People he may not even respect. It could be a ghetto whorehouse on fire and he'll still go inside, and that is cannot be explained by human instinct. And please tell me, just what is our capacity for understanding? What is our drive to learn, do advance, and to improve upon ourselves? Are we biologically driven to science? You could argue that we may one day need to leave the planet to protect our own survival, but how can you justify advancement in things like music and the arts? From a completely objective and unbiased point of view, they are a completely superfluous waste of time, and our infatuation with them is justified by neither genetics nor our 'environmental programming'. They are impractial, yet it is part of what we are...

I don't claim to know just how and why we think and reason and do things. The inner workings of the brain remains a mystery to us, and will likely do so for a long, long time. But what we can know, we learn through indirect observation.

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No, that would be memorization. Learning requires understanding, which doesn't apply to computers. For instance, todays calculators are more powerful and more accurate than any single human being could ever be. Mathematicians could not work without them. But does a calculator really understand why 3x4=12? Is it not simply reacting to the input buttons?

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1. I'm not saying we always do things at random, but that we can do things at random. To suggest otherwise is to suggest that we are total slaves to the balance of our genetics and outside influences. To suggest otherwise is like saying that every move of our life might as well have already been played out. People make millions of decisions every day. When you get out of bed in the morning, which foot do you put down first? What is the precise balance of muscle contractions that brings you to a standing position? When you're along and aisle of a grocery store and you pull something off the shelves out of a group of the same thing, which one do you retreive? There's a certain degree of randomness in every little thing you do. The greater the implications of the decision, the more you think about the decision and the more it loses its random quality. A random decision would not be where you choose to go to college (I hope), but which part of the slice of watermelon you bite into first. If an android takes a bite of the watermelon it must first consider the best course of action as to how to proceed, weighing in the time allocated for eating the slice, the amount it can fit in its mouth coupled with the amount of chewing required to make the piece safe for swallowing. Then it has to decide whether it bites the tip straight on, or slightly to one side, takes several smaller bites at once, and once consumed, decide how far into the rind it will bite.

2. Independant learning.

3. And would a machine ever be compelled to explore the sea, or fly as a bird? Every invention started with an idea, a curiosity, and that's something that I don't think machines will ever be able to emulate. Even still, people can only create from within themselves. Though we cannot dive to the depths of the ocean or fly in the sky, we still had animals to base our devices off of. Inventors struggled perilously trying to achieve and perfect flight until they started making the wings of their airplaines with a slight curve atop the forward flank, harnessing the force known as lift. The motivation for this innovation? The wings of birds.

4. But the firefighter isn't sacrificing himself for his family and usually not for his community either. It's most likely people he's never met or seen before, and will probably never see again. People he may not even respect. It could be a ghetto whorehouse on fire and he'll still go inside, and that is cannot be explained by human instinct. And please tell me, just what is our capacity for understanding? What is our drive to learn, do advance, and to improve upon ourselves? Are we biologically driven to science? You could argue that we may one day need to leave the planet to protect our own survival, but how can you justify advancement in things like music and the arts? From a completely objective and unbiased point of view, they are a completely superfluous waste of time, and our infatuation with them is justified by neither genetics nor our 'environmental programming'. They are impractial, yet it is part of what we are...

I don't claim to know just how and why we think and reason and do things. The inner workings of the brain remains a mystery to us, and will likely do so for a long, long time. But what we can know, we learn through indirect observation.

1) You are attacking a straw man, I never said every move of life was already played out, just determined. It's like paying your bills, just because you will pay them in the future does not mean they are already paid.

Also we do make decisions(I never said otherwise) but these decisions are determined by our motivations. If I was never tired staying in bed wouldn't be an issue. If I did not care for success or education, that would likewise not be an issue. We make decisions in the sense that our cognition influences our actions, this is called potential agency, but such is always determined ultimately by our genes and our enviroment.

Saying things are "sometimes random" is superfluous, how do you know they aren't just caused by factors we are as of yet not fully aware of?

2) I don't see why a computer couldn't do this if it was so-programmed.

3)Yes, why not. Program a machine to be curious and it may do just that.

Also you are wrong if you are suggesting we have animals to base all machines off of, not that it even matters as such an objection is about as non sequitur as you can get, but what about flying to the moon? What animal has done that?

Or split an atom?

As for your evaluation of science and art as having no possible basis in biology or enviromental conditioning, there you are simply wrong. First off who says to be biological something has to be practical? Peacocks have bright feathers, and certain birds build elaborate nests decorated with flowers, so obviously such is found in biology. As for science: we are naturally curious cause infering creatures. Science is merely an extension of that original instinct.

As for art: animals do it all the time to attract mates. Hence our art is likely the extension of that.

It seems in this matter then that your understanding of genes and enviroment in their relation to behavior is somewhat simplistic. I don't mean to sound like I'm talking down to you, but anyone who has read even the most introductory books or articles on evolutionary psychology would know this.

4) *Sighs* That is irrelevant as an instinct or exegentic mechanism can be extended. Ultimately then the same instinct the fire fighter uses to sacrifice himself to help a person is the same his ancestors used to help their family and community: just with different targets. It is an imperfect mechanism.

Dogs for example are descended from wolves, and wolves naturally obey the alpha of the pack. This is why dogs thus obey us: we are percieved as alphas. But are we really alpha wolves?

Baby ducks identify the first large moving thing they see as "mom" and follow it around. Now they will do this with their actual mom's but with humans as well if they are around at the crucial time.

In other words to trigger the instinct you don't actually have to be the "intended" target, or the target the instinct evolved around; but merely identified as such.

The rest of your argument is a sort of God in the Gaps type that presupposes a lot and shows in many ways your problem with AI might not be so much technical as it is ideological and perhaps even religious.

I fortunately can answer that, science is not a waste of time first off. It leads to technology which helps us derive other values. More then that though it is necessary to help satisfy us as naturally curious creatures.

This is likely because in the past those humans which were curious about their enviroment and learned about it increased their chance of survival, those who stayed dumb died out. We are the descendents of the cause-inferring ones.

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No, that would be memorization. Learning requires understanding, which doesn't apply to computers. For instance, todays calculators are more powerful and more accurate than any single human being could ever be. Mathematicians could not work without them. But does a calculator really understand why 3x4=12? Is it not simply reacting to the input buttons?

I think your distinction is a rather arbitrary one that begs the question and fails to itself make the reasons for why we should accept it.

I would say calculators do not understand because they lack cognitive mechanisms, self-awareness, and enough raw sensation.

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"You are attacking a straw man, I never said every move of life was already played out, just determined."

Actually, I said they might as well be played out, not that they already were. And there's no denying that, if everything you do is determined. As events unfold, if my reaction to them is already determined, is it not as if I have no control over myself? That no matter what I do, I would have done the same thing a million times if presented with the same sitution. That sounds more like pre-determinism.

"Saying things are "sometimes random" is superfluous, how do you know they aren't just caused by factors we are as of yet not fully aware of?"

And how would you explain them? Some of our minor behaviours are unconsciously habitual, but if we are pawns of our own thought processes, then why do people make bad decisions? There's always more than one logical reaction to a situation, how can you be so sure we'll always choose the same one? Besides, our genes can randomly mutate, is it not logical, or at least conceivable, that our behaviour can do similar things?

"2) I don't see why a computer couldn't do this if it was so-programmed."

Storing inputs as 0s and 1s on some data medium is hardly what I'd call learning. I think I said something about it to Acriku, just look for my explanation there...

"3)Yes, why not. Program a machine to be curious and it may do just that."

You've talked about the "evolution" of machines, but here you state (the fact) that machines require outside intervention for any kind of change.

"As for science: we are naturally curious cause infering creatures. As for art: animals do it all the time to attract mates. It seems in this matter then that your understanding of genes and enviroment in their relation to behavior is somewhat simplistic."

As for science; I concur. As for art; does the peacock control the color of its feathers? It isn't artistic for a birds to build an elaborate nest, it's entirely practical. Like you said, it's so they can attract mates. Our art is usually an expression of emotion or thoughts in an abstract manner, and where else does that exist in nature? As for that last comment, I'm well aware of instinctual, emotional, genetic and environmental influences on our behaviour, but we can supress each of them when we wish to and go fall back the others when it suits of. They do not work in an unwaivering balance.

"In other words to trigger the instinct you don't actually have to be the "intended" target, or the target the instinct evolved around; but merely identified as such."

Quite true, but dogs and ducks do not have the reasoning ability that we do, so comparing them to firefighters is a flawed analogy.

"The rest of your argument is a sort of God in the Gaps type that presupposes a lot and shows in many ways your problem with AI might not be so much technical as it is ideological and perhaps even religious."

How could it be religious? I'm an atheist. It it is purely semantical. I cringe a little whenever I hear a term like artificial intelligence. It's not genuine intelligence. Immitated intelligence would be a better term. It's like Catsup. It might look like Ketchup, smell like Ketchup, taste kinda like Ketchup, but it's a little off. It's just not the same. It's not really Ketchup, so that's why it's called Catsup. :) Never underestimate the power of language. It etches ideas in our mind. Soon we would be calling computers artificial life forms, and then artificial sentient beings, and following that, there'd be a bleeding heart activist group, say, PETDMP (People for the Ethical Treatment of Digital-Mechanical Persons). I think it is important that we see things for what they are.

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"You are attacking a straw man, I never said every move of life was already played out, just determined."

Actually, I said they might as well be played out, not that they already were. And there's no denying that, if everything you do is determined. As events unfold, if my reaction to them is already determined, is it not as if I have no control over myself? That no matter what I do, I would have done the same thing a million times if presented with the same sitution. That sounds more like pre-determinism.

But it's not pre-determinism as your own actions are a determining factor so you do change things. It's like if we had one man shoot another man. Without an actual gun present nobody could get shot, so if we remove the gun we change the event. Pre-determinism on the other hand implies there is no possible way to change the event, it's supernatural fate. It's Fate that does it; not the gun. That's the difference.

I do believe you do then effect and control your decisions, those decisions are merely determined. Fail to act or not be present and the same thing does not happen.

"Saying things are "sometimes random" is superfluous, how do you know they aren't just caused by factors we are as of yet not fully aware of?"

And how would you explain them? Some of our minor behaviours are unconsciously habitual, but if we are pawns of our own thought processes, then why do people make bad decisions? There's always more than one logical reaction to a situation, how can you be so sure we'll always choose the same one? Besides, our genes can randomly mutate, is it not logical, or at least conceivable, that our behaviour can do similar things?

How can we be pawns of our thought processes...we are our thought processes. What you are saying is the pawn is a pawn to itself.

As for your answer I would say parts of genes and enviroment who's function we cannot fully understand. I'm sure you cannot explain every disease on the planet, does that mean when we can't explain one we propose the existence of germ ghosts? Or a witch's curse? Such is the nature of God in the Gaps reasoning and such happens when you throw Occam's Razor out the window.

I'm sure if we played our the exact same scenerio multiple times with the exact same conditions you would make the same action because the alternative belief would be illogical and superfluous.

There may be many logical actions one can take in any sistuation but there is only one with overhwhelming motivation behind it.

Also saying our genes "randomly mutate" is a bit misleading. I suppose you are well aware of the fact that the same word can have two different meanings? So when a scientist talks about matter and energy; how energy becomes matter, concluding then that materialism is false is simply quite a non sequitur. Because when a scientist says ""matter" they mean it in a different way then a philosopher does who means something physical.

Hence when scientists refer to mutations as random they do not mean to say they violate causality, they mean the mutations take off in a non-operational manner. That the mutations are not being pre-programmed by a conscousness or the enviroment in such a way as to help or harm the animal.

"2) I don't see why a computer couldn't do this if it was so-programmed."

Storing inputs as 0s and 1s on some data medium is hardly what I'd call learning. I think I said something about it to Acriku, just look for my explanation there...

Yet our own nerve cells, which are just a bunch of on and off switches can do so. Perhaps a computer could by that token look at us and go "a bunch of on and off switches is hard what I call learning" especially seeing as these switches are merely a bunch of protein and water when you get down to it.

"3)Yes, why not. Program a machine to be curious and it may do just that."

You've talked about the "evolution" of machines, but here you state (the fact) that machines require outside intervention for any kind of change.

They do now but they are evolving. Who said outside change was forbidden in evolution?

"As for science: we are naturally curious cause infering creatures. As for art: animals do it all the time to attract mates. It seems in this matter then that your understanding of genes and enviroment in their relation to behavior is somewhat simplistic."

As for science; I concur. As for art; does the peacock control the color of its feathers? It isn't artistic for a birds to build an elaborate nest, it's entirely practical. Like you said, it's so they can attract mates. Our art is usually an expression of emotion or thoughts in an abstract manner, and where else does that exist in nature?

Instincts as you well know can take on a life or their own. People make love among other things to have children, but now at days they may not want children and may practice bith control. Hence the instinct may originally been something practical from the genes point of view but it is now being attained without doing its original function.

Art may likewise have evolved originally to attract mates, but now it's something we take pleasure in for its own sake and make even if we don't use it to attract mates.

Part of the problem comes from how you use the word practical. What do you mean by that really? You seem to mean by "practical" that it helps genes, i.e. is good for the genotype. But we humans are not genotypes, we are phenotypes. Hence everything our genes have programmed in us are so programmed because in the past they just happened to coincide with behavior that helped spread and preserve the gene.

However since genes can only work indirectly (by setting up basic motives at birth as genes are not sophisticated or fast enough to plan abstacr things before birth or influence the organisms life during life) the phenotype is then given certain values which it prefers for their own sake: not the genes.

We are like a vehicle on autopilot then.The genes are like blind programmers, lots of them setting programs up that will guide us once they hit the start button. They can try their best to get us to go along with what helps them beforehand but after the start button is hit i.e. the proteins are turned into cells, the whole thing is out of their hands. At this point its the programs that guide the vehicle, not the genes.

So we go where we want to, where our motivations(programs) lead not in the direction that is good for the gene. These directions may only be there because they by chance helped our genes replicate in the past, but they are there. And ultimately such things are what motivate us and define what it practical; not the genes.

In that sense then art is very practical, as it is enjoiyable and satisifes our values. And isn't some sort of satisfaction of value the only solid basis for defining practicality?

As for that last comment, I'm well aware of instinctual, emotional, genetic and environmental influences on our behaviour, but we can supress each of them when we wish to and go fall back the others when it suits of. They do not work in an unwaivering balance.

I'm not saying they do. Only that when we repress a certain behavior we don't just do it own of the blue, for no reason but because some other motive or value compels us to do so.

When I am offered a chance to cheat on my wife and fail to comply, it's not a random thing I do for no reason. I fail to comply because I love my wife and do not wish to betray her.

When a firefighter runs into a burning building he doesn't do so for no reason; he does so to save a life because he feels that is his duty and he would suffer emotional pain if he failed to comply with his moral duty. Set a house on fire without anyone inside(a house already almost totally consumed) and I doubt a fireman will just rush in there for no reason.

"In other words to trigger the instinct you don't actually have to be the "intended" target, or the target the instinct evolved around; but merely identified as such."

Quite true, but dogs and ducks do not have the reasoning ability that we do, so comparing them to firefighters is a flawed analogy.

If you truly believe that then you have missed my point. My point was that an instinct can be broadened and take on a life of its own apart from its original function.

Your statement presupposes that an animal acts just to help its genes, so when it realizes its behavior is maladaptive(i.e. not helpful to its own genes) it will just stop. The problem is the animal isn't being driven by its genes but its instincts.

It's just in the past the instincts have tended to help the genes. Whether they do so or not now means nothing then, because like I said the motives are what compel an organism to act, not the genes.

"The rest of your argument is a sort of God in the Gaps type that presupposes a lot and shows in many ways your problem with AI might not be so much technical as it is ideological and perhaps even religious."

How could it be religious? I'm an atheist. It it is purely semantical. I cringe a little whenever I hear a term like artificial intelligence. It's not genuine intelligence. Immitated intelligence would be a better term. It's like Catsup. It might look like Ketchup, smell like Ketchup, taste kinda like Ketchup, but it's a little off. It's just not the same.

Well then it is like circular reasoning. The above is like me saying animals don't have feelings. Why? Because feelings are by definition only things a human can have.

Machines cannot fly. Why? Because flight is by definition only something a bird can do.

This ignores the fact that when we speak of intelligence we are focusing on the function of intellect, not the specific material that composes it.

Just like when we talk about limbs, we are not so concerned that they be made of certain material or shaped a certain way. Limbs come in many shapes and sizes: fippers, insect like, human, wings, tentacles, etc. We are more concerned with their function. Hence I would say by applying your definition so narrowly, you are missing the meaning of it.

BTW: As for my comment concerning religion, I have no idea what you believe so that's why I said ideological and perhaps religious, not merely religious. Likewise atheists can also be religious (Buddhists, Taoists, and New Agers can be atheists.)

It's not really Ketchup, so that's why it's called Catsup. :) Never underestimate the power of language.

But never forget that language is not the container in truth by itself but only a vehicle for meaning. Definitions and language then only reflect what meaning we impart on them, hence if hence if we mean something different then your definition in our statement that "computers can be intelligent" then I would say its your definition of the word we must reject, not the statement, if the two come into conflict.

Soon we would be calling computers artificial life forms, and then artificial sentient beings, and following that, there'd be a bleeding heart activist group, say, PETDMP (People for the Ethical Treatment of Digital-Mechanical Persons). I think it is important that we see things for what they are.

Yes and not trick ourselves with language and narrow definitions.

This reminds me of old arguments from 19th century biologists called vitalists. These man believed what separated life from non-life was not complex chemistrt or metabolic reaction but some special, invisible "vital fluid" that penetrated life.

When confronted with the idea of something purely chemical that cannot be shown to have vital fluid many would say "then that by definition is not alive."

In this regards they kind of got their reasoning bass akwards. As we define life on the basis of our experiences with what we consider or view as alive, not on the basis of it having "vital fluid."(If that even existed, it would be incidental.)

Likewise when we define intelligence we do so on the basis of observed function and such, not on the basis of mere "brain chemstry"...that is likewise incidental.

According to your viewpoint God himself if He existed, along with spirits could not be said to posses mind, intellect or understanding, because they were made of "spiritual stuff" not nerves and protein.

And what if computer developed enough? What would be wrong then with giving them rights?

Or are they simply not citizens "by definition", whatever that definition is based on.

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I'm sure if we played our the exact same scenerio multiple times with the exact same conditions you would make the same action because the alternative belief would be illogical and superfluous.
What makes you so sure? If you truly understand all of the possible influences on human behaviour you'll know as well as I do that this theory defies any kind of scientific testing by its very nature. The number of variables involved are almost infinite. Everything from your emotional state, to the amount of food in your stomach, to the concentration of certain chemicals in your bloodstream to the impurities in the air can influence people. To get a hold on these variables would require a jump backwards in time, which, if what I've heard is right, is impossible. How can you be so sure of it? Your position is as untestable as mine is.
There may be many logical actions one can take in any sistuation but there is only one with overhwhelming motivation behind it.
For major decisions in important situations, I absolutely agree. What I'm arguing is that the irrelevant ones, the ones that never even reach a conscious level, have a certain degree of randomness involved, coupled with habits engrained in your mind (ie muscle memory).
Hence when scientists refer to mutations as random they do not mean to say they violate causality, they mean the mutations take off in a non-operational manner. That the mutations are not being pre-programmed by a conscousness or the enviroment in such a way as to help or harm the animal.
Indeed. The last line of that falls in line with what I've been trying to say.
Yet our own nerve cells, which are just a bunch of on and off switches can do so. Perhaps a computer could by that token look at us and go "a bunch of on and off switches is hard what I call learning" especially seeing as these switches are merely a bunch of protein and water when you get down to it.
I wasn't aware that you had exclusively figured out all of the inner workings of the brain. Almost all of what we know about human behaviour is through indirect observation, and while what you said holds true on microcellular level, the individual activity of neurons irrelevant to the issue. The function of how all those neurons work as a whole is what is most important, when one is comparing the mind to computer circuitry, and of this, we know very little.
They do now but they are evolving. Who said outside change was forbidden in evolution?
They are not evolving. We are programming them. We are directly molding them for our purposed. That's not evolution, that's more like creationism.
Instincts as you well know can take on a life or their own. People make love among other things to have children, but now at days they may not want children and may practice bith control. Hence the instinct may originally been something practical from the genes point of view but it is now being attained without doing its original function.
Indeed, but you answer is an obvious one. The question is, does the same apply to art?
Art may likewise have evolved originally to attract mates, but now it's something we take pleasure in for its own sake and make even if we don't use it to attract mates.
If that's true, then we should be able to see it through chemical variance when someone engages in the appreciation or the creation of art. I don't doubt this, but I've never read or heard anything about it.
Part of the problem comes from how you use the word practical. What do you mean by that really? You seem to mean by "practical" that it helps genes, i.e. is good for the genotype. But we humans are not genotypes, we are phenotypes. Hence everything our genes have programmed in us are so programmed because in the past they just happened to coincide with behavior that helped spread and preserve the gene.
Well, in the context the word was in, I meant practical from a biological standpoint; that is, practical for the organism's continued prosperity in its environment.
In that sense then art is very practical, as it is enjoiyable and satisifes our values. And isn't some sort of satisfaction of value the only solid basis for defining practicality?
I don't think it's that simple. That doesn't explain why it's enjoyable to us. What makes us perceive some art as enjoyable, while not enjoying others at all. I've always pondered this, particularly in relation to music, as I am a man of many a musical inclination. Typical speculation assumes it to be strictly an environmentally acquired taste, but that doesn't cut it for me, as it doesn't explain a) why we started making and enjoying music in the first place and b) the underlying similiarities between music of all cultures. There are defineable mathematical similarities between musical styles developed thousands of miles away from each other. Certain ranges, sequences and combonations of notes that are universally perceived by people as nice-sounding, pleasing music. This begs a number of questions; are there basic instinctual preferences of music engrained in our humanity? Was the original purpose of music something biologically practical, such as a form of communication by whatever species preceeded us, perhaps one which lacked the range of verbal articulation that we are born with, and copensated with articulation of tones. It's conceivable. In one of those Chinese languages (Cantonese I think...the older one), there's a word with three different meanings which are recognized and applied not by the context the word is in, but by the pitch variation it is spoken with (high-low, flat, low-high). But that still doesn't explain the everlasting desire to create new art...
I'm not saying they do. Only that when we repress a certain behavior we don't just do it own of the blue, for no reason but because some other motive or value compels us to do so.
I'll repeat the distinction I made earlier because it's important: for actual conscious decisions that even require though, I concur that randomness is eliminated. For ones so unimportant that no thought process is required, I think there's some amount of randomness involved. For example, you're about to go out, so you put on your shoes. Your shoes are facing away from you, both as accessible as the other. Which one do you put on first? I doubt you would stop to logically consider the implications of that decision. Time spent thinking about it would be wasted, since it makes absolutely no difference in the long run. So why think about it? You just put whichever foot into the appropreate shoe.
Quite true, but dogs and ducks do not have the reasoning ability that we do, so comparing them to firefighters is a flawed analogy.
If you truly believe that then you have missed my point. My point was that an instinct can be broadened and take on a life of its own apart from its original function.
No, I understood your point. Mine was that the duck cannot doesn't have the smarts to say "Hey, this ain't my mom! This ain't even a duck!" because it can't reason that well. That's not the case for firemen. They're supressing their instincts, not bending them to fit the situation.
Your statement presupposes that an animal acts just to help its genes, so when it realizes its behavior is maladaptive(i.e. not helpful to its own genes) it will just stop. The problem is the animal isn't being driven by its genes but its instincts.
And what are our instincts determined by if not our genes?
Well then it is like circular reasoning. The above is like me saying animals don't have feelings. Why? Because feelings are by definition only things a human can have.
No, I'm saying that (what I define as) intelligence cannot be posessed by computers based on the way they WORK (as of here and now), not the fact that they are computers.
BTW: As for my comment concerning religion, I have no idea what you believe so that's why I said ideological and perhaps religious, not merely religious. Likewise atheists can also be religious (Buddhists, Taoists, and New Agers can be atheists.)
I know, just letting you know that was all.
But never forget that language is not the container in truth by itself but only a vehicle for meaning. Definitions and language then only reflect what meaning we impart on them, hence if hence if we mean something different then your definition in our statement that "computers can be intelligent" then I would say its your definition of the word we must reject, not the statement, if the two come into conflict.
Then my question to you is how do you define what constitutes as intelligence, and what is your reason for holding that definition?
Likewise when we define intelligence we do so on the basis of observed function and such, not on the basis of mere "brain chemstry"...that is likewise incidental.
And if a monkey is trained well enough to completely immitate observed human qualities, would we have to start calling it a human too?
And what if computer developed enough? What would be wrong then with giving them rights?
That's one mother of an if. That would require radical, almost miraculous reinvention of computer processes. All rights, from the UN's human rights to the animal rights that exist in some countries, are based on the purpose of reducing and preventing suffering as much as possible. In order for computers to be included in those rights, they'd have to be able to suffer, and they'd probably have to be considered a form of life. I sincerely doubt there ever being anything like that, but hell, stranger things have happened...
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Do you really think that? That people do things completely at random? That you may starting killing and pillaging one day for no reason at all?

It depends. I don't know what I can answer on this question. But if people can't do things at random, then how does ideas evolve? All inventions? All religions? Isn't that the works of chance?

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Stability is relative. People still kill people, still die in car crashes and do all sorts of seemingly needless things. A stable society is one that discourages this kind of behaviour. But like I said, it's all relative...

Exactly. Go back in time, and you'll see that those civilizations were also ruled by laws. Mankind has been "stable" for over 5000 years, and still we do unexplained things.

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  • 3 weeks later...
What makes you so sure? If you truly understand all of the possible influences on human behaviour you'll know as well as I do that this theory defies any kind of scientific testing by its very nature. The number of variables involved are almost infinite. Everything from your emotional state, to the amount of food in your stomach, to the concentration of certain chemicals in your bloodstream to the impurities in the air can influence people. To get a hold on these variables would require a jump backwards in time, which, if what I've heard is right, is impossible. How can you be so sure of it? Your position is as untestable as mine is.

It is scientifically untestable, but not philosophically untestable.And also we can identify some causes of behavior.

For major decisions in important situations, I absolutely agree. What I'm arguing is that the irrelevant ones, the ones that never even reach a conscious level, have a certain degree of randomness involved, coupled with habits engrained in your mind (ie muscle memory).

Yes but there are underlying causes for that. You already listed muscle reflexes for one.

I wasn't aware that you had exclusively figured out all of the inner workings of the brain.

We know about neurons which make up the brain. We don't have to know everything, to know about some things.

Almost all of what we know about human behaviour is through indirect observation, and while what you said holds true on microcellular level, the individual activity of neurons irrelevant to the issue.

Well then the individual 1's and 0's of computers are irrelevant to the issue. You can't have it both ways friend.

The function of how all those neurons work as a whole is what is most important, when one is comparing the mind to computer circuitry, and of this, we know very little.

How do you know how much we know? Neuroscientists are making break throughs all the time. I think we know more then you say.

Also again, this works both ways. We should then focus on how the 1's and 0's work as a whole, not in isolation.

They are not evolving. We are programming them. We are directly molding them for our purposed. That's not evolution, that's more like creationism.

That is evolution. Just because something has a purpose does not mean it evolves. The method of reproduction is somewhat irrelevant.

Indeed, but you answer is an obvious one. The question is, does the same apply to art?

And I already answered this with a "yes".

If that's true, then we should be able to see it through chemical variance when someone engages in the appreciation or the creation of art. I don't doubt this, but I've never read or heard anything about it.

Just because you know nothing about it, does not mean we can't. Also your argument doesn't quite hold up.

That's like me saying "well if we need muscles to run, then I should be able to see exactly what muscles cause running."

Here you confuse ultimate/general explanations with proximate/specific ones.

Scientists know that germs, and such are what make people sick. But they can't always identify what illness a person has exactly. That doesn't mean we invoke the "germ gremlin" for every case we cannot currently explain.

Well, in the context the word was in, I meant practical from a biological standpoint; that is, practical for the organism's continued prosperity in its environment.

Yes and I showed how it has practical value in attracting mates.

However if that does not convince you, I will quote Jared Diamond, leading scientist, on the issue:

There are several ways in which art helps us to survive and to pass on our genes. Art often brings direct sexual benefits to its owner. It is not just a joke that men bent on seduction invite a woman to view their etchings. In real life, dance and music and poetry are common preludes to sex.

Art brings indirect benefits to its owners - it is a quick indicator of status, which - in human as in animal socities - is a key to acquiring food, land and sexual partners. New Guinea villagers today decorate their bodies with shell, fur, and bird-of-paradise plumes. We know that New Guinea art signal superiority and wealth, because birds of paradise are hard to hunt, beautiful statues take talent to make, and both are very expensive to buy.

Elsewhere, as well, art is often viewed as a signal of talent, money, or both. Where once we signalled our stauts with bird feathers on our bodies, we now do it with diamonds and a Picasso on our wall. Nowadays we read increasingly often of art sold at auction for tens of millions of dollars, and of art theft. In short, precisely because it serves as a signal of good genes and ample resources, art can often be cashed in for still more genes and resources.

http://homepage.eircom.net/~odyssey/Quotes/Life/Science/Third_Chimpanzee.html#Art

Diamond again:

Art helps define human groups. Human have always formed competing groups whose survival is essential if the individuals in that group are to pass on their genes. Human history largely consists of the details of groups killing, enslaving, or expelling other groups. The winner takes the loser's land, sometimes also the loser's women, and thus the loser's opportunity to pass on genes. Group cohesion depends on the group's distinctive culture - especially its language, religion, and art (including stories and dances), hence art is a significant force behind group survival. Even if you have better genes than most of your fellow tribesmen, it will do you no good should your whole tribe (including you) get annihilated by some other tribe.

By now, you're probably protesting that I have gone completely overboard in ascribing utility to art. Is private satisfaction not a (the?) main reason for our art? Of course. To maintain that art is useful is not to deny that art provides pleasure. Indeed, if we were not programmed to enjoy art, it could not serve most of its useful functions for us.

I'll repeat the distinction I made earlier because it's important: for actual conscious decisions that even require though, I concur that randomness is eliminated. For ones so unimportant that no thought process is required, I think there's some amount of randomness involved. For example, you're about to go out, so you put on your shoes. Your shoes are facing away from you, both as accessible as the other. Which one do you put on first? I doubt you would stop to logically consider the implications of that decision. Time spent thinking about it would be wasted, since it makes absolutely no difference in the long run. So why think about it? You just put whichever foot into the appropreate shoe.

That's a straw man. I'm not saying we can predict every factor concerning human bevior, I am only saying they are determined by causal factors.

I am not saying there is "one single causal factor" that determines everything and makes it predicable. I am saying there are a myriad of them. Some of them working at a level we do not notice.

No, I understood your point. Mine was that the duck cannot doesn't have the smarts to say "Hey, this ain't my mom! This ain't even a duck!" because it can't reason that well. That's not the case for firemen. They're supressing their instincts, not bending them to fit the situation.

Irrelevant and you are still not understanding (or accurately presenting) my point.

You are confusing proximate causal factors with ultimate. From the genes point of view the ultimate matters more,from the brains point of view it is the proximate.

How the mechanisms are set are irrelevant to the fact that once they are set, the individual has certain motives and values that will now exist despite their serving a different purpose then the genes "intended".

To quote Richard Dawkins:

Some people are puzzled by the sense in which it's possible to take a deliberate decision to emancipate ourselves from the Darwinian world. Well, we know we do it, because every time we look unreceptive we are doing something anti-Darwinian. What happens is that Darwinian natural selection has built into us sexual desire for obvious good Darwinian reasons. In nature, where there are no contraceptives, sexual desire leads you to copulate. Copulation leads to children. That's all the genes need. In the modern world contraceptives have been invented, so it's possible to enjoy copulation without the follow-up, without having children. And we do. And many of us do it all the time. And it is something which is manifestly and factually counter-Darwinian -- anti-Darwinian, anti the dictates of the selfish genes. We have been given brains which were shaped to enjoy sex. We have also been given brains that have been shaped to enjoy various other kinds of hedonistic pleasures. We have noticed consciously that hedonistic pleasure or other more worthwhile pastimes are sometimes incompatible with having lots of children all the time that you have to look after. And so we get the best of both worlds by consciously deciding to enjoy both the sex and the other things that would have been competed with -- by the need to look after children. We have achieved the best of both worlds from our own brain point of view, but not of course from the gene point of view.

http://www.meta-library.net/transcript/dawk-body.html

To quote Steven Pinker, professor of neuroscience at MIT debunking people's fears concerning evolutionary psychology:

The final fear is the fear of nihilism. If it can be shown that all of our motives and values are products of the physiology of the brain, which in turn was shaped by the forces of evolution, then they would in some sense be shams, without objective reality. I wouldn't really be loving my child; all I would be doing is selfishly propagating my genes. Flowers and butterflies and works of art are not truly beautiful; my brain just evolved to give me a pleasant sensation when a certain pattern of light hits my retina. The fear is that biology will debunk all that we hold sacred.

This fear is based on a confusion between two very different ways to explain behavior. What biologists call a "proximate" explanation refers to what is meaningful to me given the brain that I have. An "ultimate" explanation refers to the evolutionary processes that gave me a brain with the ability to have those thoughts and feelings. Yes, evolution (the ultimate explanation for our minds) is a short-sighted selfish process in which genes are selected for their ability to maximize the number of copies of themselves. But that doesn't mean that we are selfish and short sighted, at least not all the time. There's nothing that prevents the selfish, amoral process of natural selection evolution from evolving a big-brained social organism with a complex moral sense. There's an old saying that people who appreciate legislation and sausages should not see them being made. That's a bit like human values?knowing how they were made can be misleading if you don't think carefully about the process. Selfish genes don't necessarily build a selfish organization.

http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/pinker_blank/pinker_blank_p3.html

No, I'm saying that (what I define as) intelligence cannot be posessed by computers based on the way they WORK (as of here and now), not the fact that they are computers.

And you have failed to give any standards as to what constitues working, or non-working.

Then my question to you is how do you define what constitutes as intelligence, and what is your reason for holding that definition?

I define it in a approximate/fuzzy manner. In that the being can solve and show an understanding of certain problems, can learn, has some degree of self-awareness, etc.

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