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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    Kurzweil predicts 2029 for the full reverse engineering of the brain. That's 15 years from now. 15 years is a lot of technological growth these days. Whatever we know today will seem pathetic by then. Guaranteed.
    Don't quote Kurzweil for dates and don't assume that Moors Law would still be in effect in 10 years or so. There will be a paradigm shift in computing (whether it is to organic motherboards or to molecular computing and quantum computing) but the transition period and aftermath would not be at the same pace. They can't get much more out of contemporary boards and they will have to explore alternatives rather than pursue the easy option of doubling transistors - which will take time and money the market isn't accustomed to There is no "guaranteed" about anything, especially the idea that today's knowledge would be considered pathetic. Was 1998's technology considered pathetic?

    Emotions can be systematized rationally, they all had an evolutionary function at some point. They may or may not guide us to rational behavior, though. I think irrationality is equivalent to evil, actually. Emotions are fine, but not irrationality. Irrationality is the force that causes humans to believe strange things that aren't true, and causes them to burn people at the stake and fly planes into buildings. Rationality has been our saving grace as a civilization.
    How does irrationality = evil? Irrationality often hampers enquiry, objectivity and progress but that places it as an obstacle. That's all it is.

    I have seen GATTACA and all I have to say is, it is just a movie. I don't think the world it creates is realistic in the sense that genetics would be that advanced, yet there would be no way to help Vincent with his own ailments. For instance, we recently have discovered treatment that basically cures cystic fibrosis. What once, naturally gave people a huge disadvantage, now is no obstacle at all. This isn't a matter of just creating superior designer babies and leaving natural-borns high and dry. Both classes benefit.

    Furthermore, we already live in a world of discrimination caused by nature. The world of GATTACA, were it to exist, would be no different than the world as it already is. In real nature as it is today, some people are born much stronger and smarter than others, and those people have better opportunities.
    This depends (if the system is top-down) how many morsels fall from the table for the dogs under the table to eat. If the whole process was solidly privatised and capitalist many people at the bottom would not be able to afford treatment. Treatments only serve everyone when you don't have to move a mountain to be able to reach it. But I'm sure you're aware of all this.

    Our uniqueness will not be eradicated by merging mind with machine. We will probably become more unique. Kind of in the same sense that a human is more unique than a bacteria.
    How would we become more unique? How is a human more unique than a bacteria?

  2. #22
    Senior Member zago's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Standuble View Post
    Don't quote Kurzweil for dates and don't assume that Moors Law would still be in effect in 10 years or so. There will be a paradigm shift in computing (whether it is to organic motherboards or to molecular computing and quantum computing) but the transition period and aftermath would not be at the same pace. They can't get much more out of contemporary boards and they will have to explore alternatives rather than pursue the easy option of doubling transistors. There is no "guaranteed" about anything.
    Clearly you haven't even read chapter 1 of TSIN.
    I didn't even mention Moore's law, and don't need to.
    The only way this isn't guaranteed is if there is some TRULY EPIC global catastrophe.
    Read chapter 1 of TSIN.

    How does irrationality = evil? Irrationality often hampers enquiry, objectivity and progress but that places it as an obstacle. That's all it is.
    Ok, you're right. Burning alleged witches at the stake was just an obstacle. Thanks for correcting me.

    This depends (if the system is top-down) how many morsels fall from the table for the dogs under the table to eat. If the whole process was solidly privatised and capitalist many people at the bottom would not be able to afford treatment. Treatments only serve everyone when you don't have to move a mountain to be able to reach it. But I'm sure you're aware of all this.
    Wut. New technologies get cheaper and cheaper, period. Please let's not turn this into a debate about the evil and greed and inequality and whatever of capitalism. Some people seem to have the urge to do that in every topic somehow. Technology like this lessens the gap between the rich and the poor, and it gives poor people things kings would have gone to war for centuries ago. The internet itself will have the same sort of effect for the underclass that the printing press did, but multiply it by like a million or so. People in Africa have access to MIT courses through their smart phones. That's the world we live in today. Dunno what you envision.

    How would we become more unique?
    Many ways, but I'll just try to give an example. What if you could enhance your ability in any area you wanted, like maybe music? What if you could be talented enough to write the Moonlight Sonata? Or even something far more beautiful? As we become able to enhance our own capabilities in the direction of our choosing, our creations will multiply in their brilliance, as will our ability to appreciate.

    How is a human more unique than a bacteria?
    Was that the dumbest question I have ever been asked? Yes. Absolutely. The sad part about that is I don't think you IQ is really that low, I think you are just being extremely obnoxious without realizing it.

  3. #23
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    @zago - I was messing with you a bit with the bacteria question. It was to see whether you could (or would) answer it. I had concerns that you were confusing "unique" with "talents" and wanted to find out for myself.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    @zago - I am actually interested in hearing how's human more unique than bacteria and how do you define uniqueness. Not that it's crucial for this topic, but it is a valid question. -1 for attacking someone's persona rather than the question.

    Also, there IS a gap between the poor and the rich in terms of technology too. Do you really think that people in Africa can really study MIT courses online? From what I've read, only 15% of mobile connections in Africa come from Smart Devices. And having a smart device is not enough, you'll need stable and somewhat fast connection to enjoy video lectures or interactive video chats. They do have some kind of access to knowledge yes, but it's far behind ours.

    Now imagine if we are going to augment ourselves with machines, who'll get the least powerful tech? The poor. Whatever it is, capitalism makes sure that the poor gets the short sticks and makes sure they stay behind. I personally believe we are moving away from capitalism, into some form of (more or less) global socialism.

    Irrationality does not equal evil. Irrationali actions can cause damage and pervert greater whole, but it also one of the features that differs us from the machines. Am I being evil because I drink soda? It isn't that healthy, it's more expensive to produce and less nutritious than say orange juice. Am I evil if I prefer using down-to-earth colors, regardless of the expenses of these particular dyes? We are all driven by the irrational nature of human emotions, but guided by our rational thoughts.
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
    -Nikola Tesla

  5. #25
    Senior Member Alea_iacta_est's Avatar
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    Still wondering how the fuck they are going to convince the first healthy individual to upload their mind to a machine.

  6. #26
    Senior Member zago's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    @zago - I am actually interested in hearing how's human more unique than bacteria and how do you define uniqueness. Not that it's crucial for this topic, but it is a valid question. -1 for attacking someone's persona rather than the question.
    Seriously? A human is more unique in every possible way. Bacteria exist on this planet by the quintillion and they are all virtually the same - single celled organisms with extremely low complexity, 0 intelligence, and virtually no experience, which do nothing but feed on simple nutrients and replicate via binary fission into 2 identical copies. Meanwhile humans UHHHHHH lemme think... are able to fucking communicate complex ideas to each other using things in their neck that rapidly modulate the air pressure in a way such that a sensory organ called the ear can transmit to an interpreting mechanism we call a brain? We can see? We have senses? We have the ability to conceptualize and create meaning? We can write books, play sports, compose music, feel pleasure and pain, talk about god, and we like to make things like ohhhh, you know, smash protons together at the speed of light in 20 mile underground loops kept at pretty much the coldest temperature nature can afford... send robotic spacecraft to explore Mars.... explain what happened 13.7 billion years ago when the universe was born..... And that's not even the tip of the tip of the iceberg. Your own life is rife with meaning. You have parents who love you. Friends. Achievements and failures. Curiosity. Romance. Wisdom. ETC.

    It's embarrassing that I should even have to explain that. My only response is that people take stuff for granted all the time, and it amazes me. You might be a nihilist if..... lol. It just blows my mind how people continually fail to recognize the obvious. You practically have to smack them on the head to get them to even realize that, yes, change actually will continue to happen. No, however important you feel, we don't actually live at the apex of history. Life will go on, it will change into something you don't even recognize. Get over yourself. Get over your stubborn belief that you actually KNOW anything. What you know is NOTHING compared to what has been and what will be. Once you can appreciate that, then you can appreciate what you actually are.

    Also, there IS a gap between the poor and the rich in terms of technology too. Do you really think that people in Africa can really study MIT courses online? From what I've read, only 15% of mobile connections in Africa come from Smart Devices. And having a smart device is not enough, you'll need stable and somewhat fast connection to enjoy video lectures or interactive video chats. They do have some kind of access to knowledge yes, but it's far behind ours.
    What so it will never progress? That's just one tiny example, anyway. Ever hear of stuff like wikipedia? Lol. Information is out there for those who want it. It wasn't before. It will continue to become more available. Did I say things are perfect? No. They are getting better though. "There's still a gap." Lol. What do you expect here? Perfect equality? Hold your horses, ok?

    The nice thing is, the wikipedia I read is the same wikipedia Bill Gates reads. That's some pretty damn good equality right there, especially if you consider the past. Access is here and it is getting cheaper all the time. How much more do you want, and how much faster do you expect it to be delivered? What, exactly, is your solution, anyway? You don't think our natural technological progress is going to help make things better on this planet? What will? Global totalitarianism?

    Again, how do you take what you have for granted?

    My best guess is that you have created a belief system that actually resists positive change because you have concentrated so hard on trying to accept things as they are. That's the case with a lot of people. It's how they cope with the shittiness of life. They convince themselves that they actually want death and various forms of suffering because those things must give life its meaning. To abolish those things would be to destroy what makes us who we are! Na. Those things suck, plain and simple. Life itself pretty much sucks. Seriously. Fuck this stupid world where you get sick, lose everyone you love, and then die yourself. If you stand for anything at all, you should stand for the elimination of those things. Well guess what: it's happening. Are you really going to sit here and complain?

    Now imagine if we are going to augment ourselves with machines, who'll get the least powerful tech? The poor. Whatever it is, capitalism makes sure that the poor gets the short sticks and makes sure they stay behind. I personally believe we are moving away from capitalism, into some form of (more or less) global socialism.
    My neighbor makes 17 bucks an hour working as a school bus monitor. She just got a Samsung Galaxy S3, which as far as I know is pretty much a state of the art smart phone. The poor get the same internet the rich get. SOOOOOOOO much stuff is free these days, it is INSANELY RIDICULOUS lol.

    Irrationality does not equal evil. Irrationali actions can cause damage and pervert greater whole, but it also one of the features that differs us from the machines. Am I being evil because I drink soda? It isn't that healthy, it's more expensive to produce and less nutritious than say orange juice. Am I evil if I prefer using down-to-earth colors, regardless of the expenses of these particular dyes? We are all driven by the irrational nature of human emotions, but guided by our rational thoughts.
    I already said, emotions are good but irrationality is bad. They are separate and distinct. It may well be rational to appease your emotions. Never said it wasn't. If you like doing something, there is value in doing it. Having false beliefs is a different story. If someone had actually educated those crazies who burned witches at the stake, they wouldn't have done it, and a lot of misery would have been spared. You really can't compare that to drinking soda. Sorry.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alea_iacta_est View Post
    Still wondering how the fuck they are going to convince the first healthy individual to upload their mind to a machine.
    I don't think that would be a major hurdle. Countless people who are about to die would do it readily.

  7. #27
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    Seriously? A human is more unique in every possible way.
    Humans are more complex for sure, never doubted that. But it was a question of uniqueness. We are "merely" smart apes. Bacteria on the other hand is pretty amazing on how it evolves. It has many unique biological features no other organism has. It's a matter of opinion which is more unique, as the concept of "more unique" is pretty subjective.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    It's embarrassing that I should even have to explain that. My only response is that people take stuff for granted all the time, and it amazes me. You might be a nihilist if..... lol. It just blows my mind how people continually fail to recognize the obvious. You practically have to smack them on the head to get them to even realize that, yes, change actually will continue to happen. No, however important you feel, we don't actually live at the apex of history. Life will go on, it will change into something you don't even recognize. Get over yourself. Get over your stubborn belief that you actually KNOW anything. What you know is NOTHING compared to what has been and what will be. Once you can appreciate that, then you can appreciate what you actually are.
    I have no idea what this rant has to do with anything, but it sounds like you are pretty spiteful. There are never stupid questions. Only stupid answers. If we always assume that things are too obvious to explain, we'll miss the unobvious.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    What so it will never progress? That's just one tiny example, anyway. Ever hear of stuff like wikipedia? Lol. Information is out there for those who want it. It wasn't before. It will continue to become more available. Did I say things are perfect? No. They are getting better though. "There's still a gap." Lol. What do you expect here? Perfect equality? Hold your horses, ok?
    You are pretty quick making assumptions about me and my opinions. For reference, I've actually studied Interactive Media at collage, I've participated in virtual education projects and partly work on that field everyday.
    Wikipedia is part of the internet that's going to be old sooner or later. It is web 2.0 and things are moving forward. People in USA and people in Niger have completely different virtual social networks, or social capital if you will. Even if they would have access to internet and wikipedia, these social circles are mostly out of their reach (due to technical know-how amongst many things).

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    What, exactly, is your solution, anyway? You don't think our natural technological progress is going to help make things better on this planet? What will? Global totalitarianism?

    Again, how do you take what you have for granted?
    Technology alone. There needs to be considerable sociopolitical changes too, as there have been in the past. Globalization, internet and high quality of life amongst other things have rendered all-out-wars in western world meaningless, therefore there hasn't been major conflicts in Europe or Northern America since WW2.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    My best guess is that you have created a belief system that actually resists positive change because you have concentrated so hard on trying to accept things as they are. That's the case with a lot of people. It's how they cope with the shittiness of life. They convince themselves that they actually want death and various forms of suffering because those things must give life its meaning. To abolish those things would be to destroy what makes us who we are! Na. Those things suck, plain and simple. Life itself pretty much sucks. Seriously. Fuck this stupid world where you get sick, lose everyone you love, and then die yourself. If you stand for anything at all, you should stand for the elimination of those things. Well guess what: it's happening. Are you really going to sit here and complain?
    All this just because I'm an ISTJ and questioned your statement?

    For the record, I'm not coping with shittiness of life. For the time being, death seems to be inevidable to us all, but there still is a possibility that within our lifetime we might be able to considerably enhance our lifespan. But if we would conquer death, our society as it is would be broken.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    My neighbor makes 17 bucks an hour working as a school bus monitor. She just got a Samsung Galaxy S3, which as far as I know is pretty much a state of the art smart phone. The poor get the same internet the rich get. SOOOOOOOO much stuff is free these days, it is INSANELY RIDICULOUS lol.
    S3 is actually now in big sales right now, at least here in Finland 299€ for 4G phone. It's a great phone, but falls behind this year's models. But yes, compared to history, modern smart phones are pretty amazing.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    I already said, emotions are good but irrationality is bad. They are separate and distinct. It may well be rational to appease your emotions. Never said it wasn't. If you like doing something, there is value in doing it. Having false beliefs is a different story. If someone had actually educated those crazies who burned witches at the stake, they wouldn't have done it, and a lot of misery would have been spared. You really can't compare that to drinking soda. Sorry.
    They didn't burn people at the stake because they were witches. They burnt people because they defied their power. The catholic church was probably the most powerful faction in the middle ages, and they used the same methods of control as nations use these days, even if they were pretty blunt about it. Fear the heretic, fear the infidel, fear the terrorist. So one could say that it's rational to protect your status with any means necessary. That's what we do today as well. We persecute illegal immigrants who are after our standard of living. We use weapons to protect the resources we have.

    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    I don't think that would be a major hurdle. Countless people who are about to die would do it readily.
    Agreed. There are always early adopters willing to be in the frontline. I mean, there's a lot of people who would volunteer for one-way trip to Mars.
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
    -Nikola Tesla

  8. #28
    Senior Member zago's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    Humans are more complex for sure, never doubted that. But it was a question of uniqueness. We are "merely" smart apes. Bacteria on the other hand is pretty amazing on how it evolves. It has many unique biological features no other organism has. It's a matter of opinion which is more unique, as the concept of "more unique" is pretty subjective.
    Things that seem subjective aren't always. And if they are, why even talk about it? I'm not budging on this, I still think it is absurd sophistry. Basically you think the concept of uniqueness is just a subjective opinion so nothing is technically ever more unique than another thing. Do you think Hot Crossed Buns is as unique as Mozart's Requiem, as performed by a full symphony orchestra? That's an appropriate analogy for what you are trying to argue here. You see how ridiculous that is. If I sound spiteful, I'm not. I'm just surprised and... trying to get my point across. Kind of like a smack in the face lol. 'Cause if that's what you're saying, I think you might need one.

    I have no idea what this rant has to do with anything, but it sounds like you are pretty spiteful. There are never stupid questions. Only stupid answers. If we always assume that things are too obvious to explain, we'll miss the unobvious.
    There are definitely stupid questions and that was one. Don't worry it's not the end of the world. We all have our moments of stupidity. But think about that cliche: "no stupid questions, only stupid answers"? Does that really make sense, or does it just make a nice slogan? So it is impossible to ever ask a stupid question? A stupid question is one where the answer is right in front of you. If you have to ask, go for it, no harm done I guess, but THINK!

    You are pretty quick making assumptions about me and my opinions. For reference, I've actually studied Interactive Media at collage, I've participated in virtual education projects and partly work on that field everyday.
    Wikipedia is part of the internet that's going to be old sooner or later. It is web 2.0 and things are moving forward. People in USA and people in Niger have completely different virtual social networks, or social capital if you will. Even if they would have access to internet and wikipedia, these social circles are mostly out of their reach (due to technical know-how amongst many things).
    Still goes along the line of things aren't perfect yet. Point is, people in Africa have smart phones with internet on them, and it gives them unprecedented access to information and communication. Whereas before, potential might have been wasted due to a lack of access, now it is not. If I'm a curious kid, there's something I can go to. I forget what we are even arguing about at this point... rich vs poor or something? The poor increasingly have this access to information. Only point I was making.

    Technology alone. There needs to be considerable sociopolitical changes too, as there have been in the past. Globalization, internet and high quality of life amongst other things have rendered all-out-wars in western world meaningless, therefore there hasn't been major conflicts in Europe or Northern America since WW2.
    I agree that there needs to be sociopolitical change, and I think it is happening pretty much as it should. I hope it continues like that.

    All this just because I'm an ISTJ and questioned your statement?
    Didn't notice your type.

    For the record, I'm not coping with shittiness of life. For the time being, death seems to be inevidable to us all, but there still is a possibility that within our lifetime we might be able to considerably enhance our lifespan. But if we would conquer death, our society as it is would be broken.
    I'm hardly convinced about the inevitability of death for a 28 year old like myself at this point. If I live like my grandparents, I'll pass away in my mid 80s. That would be about 2070. Of course, things will have changed inconceivably by then. What is beyond biotech, nanotech, and AI? God only knows. Maybe it IS god. Actually that seems pretty reasonable haha.

    I figure if death hasn't been eradicated by 2070, I'll go with cryonics, which I'm sure would have also seen unimaginable improvements by then. Already today thousands have signed up with companies like Alcor for cryonic preservation. They use a process that avoids freezing so the cellular damage will be minimized. Seems pretty promising.

    If we conquer death, who knows what things will be like by then. Society as it is will not be for long either way. What's coming is nothing short of a paradigm shift.

    They didn't burn people at the stake because they were witches. They burnt people because they defied their power. The catholic church was probably the most powerful faction in the middle ages, and they used the same methods of control as nations use these days, even if they were pretty blunt about it. Fear the heretic, fear the infidel, fear the terrorist. So one could say that it's rational to protect your status with any means necessary. That's what we do today as well. We persecute illegal immigrants who are after our standard of living. We use weapons to protect the resources we have.
    Just because we still do it today doesn't make it rational. And why look at it only from the perspective of a ruler trying to hold on to power? What about the misled public who actually believes those lies, gets manipulated?

    Agreed. There are always early adopters willing to be in the frontline. I mean, there's a lot of people who would volunteer for one-way trip to Mars.
    I happen to think whoever went to Mars today would be able to come back, it's just not guaranteed because we don't have the tech yet. Trips to Mars should become increasingly facile, provided we actually have a use for going there (which then again we may not). Virtual presence is also an option.

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