Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Tuesday Links

  • US and China agree to regular discussions on cyber-attacks.  Could be a good thing.  Probably can't do any harm, at least.
  • Floating wind turbines?
  • 31 charts that will restore your faith in humanity (maybe :-).
  • Dmitry Itskov has made it his personal mission to solve the problem of uploading human minds into robots.


sunbeam said...

In regards to the Russian guy.

He is pretty nutty, and I don't think he has thought this through. People conceive of things, but they don't seem to stop and ponder what it means if they could actually do it.

I'm not going to say a single thing about the viability of this scheme, from any standpoint, though if technology progresses as it has you never know.

But picture this scene:

In 2045 you stand in front of a robotic "body." Something finishes scanning your brain for "you."

The robot opens it's eyes (yeah we are being anthropomorphic because we can) and looks at you.

Now tell me WTF that means?

To paraphrase The Incredibles movie, "If there is more than one you, then no one is."

Of course this particular scene depends on non destructive scanning of the brain being possible. 2045 seems a little early for that, barring Kurzweil's singularity I think that would take longer.

And why bother going into a body? Just put the "program" into whatever passes for a mainframe then. I'll operate a body remotely if I need one, or run a new instance of me in one if I need to.

After all it's not like I wouldn't be able to make my own virtual world inside the computer at that point.

And heck, I'm a sack of protoplasm motivated by instincts, hormones, and a tiny dollop of rational thought.

Remove the hormones alone, and god knows what I would be. Don't like one of my instincts? Deactivate that thread in my consciousness. Something I don't know? I'll plug in a Quantum Electrodynamics module into the whole that is me.

If I'm "lonely," whatever that would mean to an entity such as this, I'll just run another instance of me. Or maybe I'll talk to an instance of "you."

Or one of the totally inorganic intelligences that is around (after all if we could do this with me, it isn't a problem to make one from scratch, we had to do it along the way of course).

I think these guys are pie in the sky optimistic. My "gut" seems to think it is possible one day. I'd probably say more like 2100 or later. That is still awful close though.

But despite all the voluminous words these guys have written, they sure don't seem like they have thought this through.

If that is even possible honestly. I tend to think it is though.

And despite all the science fiction I read in my younger years, I won't be sorry to miss it.

The future: no Star Trek, no Lensmen, no Space Opera, no fetching green skinned Venusian women with three boobs.

Just a big "Meh" from my viewpoint.

Stephen B. said...

Chart 28's data is 16 years old. I would suspect the trends on that chart have reversed just as automobile ownership and miles driven has taken an historic turn in the past 10 years as well.