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Author Topic: Random thoughts - On the Origins of "I Could Eat A Horse"  (Read 67965 times)

McTraveller

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #30 on: April 29, 2018, 05:20:36 pm »

I know people often claim they don't believe there is a soul or that there is nothing beyond emergent phenomena that result in consciousness.  I don't know many people that act like they believe that though.

A provocative question to illustrate what I mean: if that is indeed the situation, then why the difference in sentiment between, say, the death of a person and the obliteration of a star being consumed by a black hole?
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Maximum Spin

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #31 on: April 29, 2018, 05:44:09 pm »

A provocative question to illustrate what I mean: if that is indeed the situation, then why the difference in sentiment between, say, the death of a person and the obliteration of a star being consumed by a black hole?
What difference? :/

Well, for people who do experience a difference, I assume that the reason is "I didn't personally know that star".
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KittyTac

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #32 on: April 29, 2018, 09:59:49 pm »

Free will is an illusion, but the human mind is hard enough to predict that it may as well be real for most purposes.
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Billy

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #33 on: April 30, 2018, 12:03:14 am »

Were the pyramids made to preserve the dna of the entombed?
Make a big enough mound of dirt and you'll last long enough to get resurrected in a form.
Or is the half life too short for omelets
« Last Edit: April 30, 2018, 12:11:49 am by Billy »
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Hanslanda

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #34 on: April 30, 2018, 09:23:42 am »

DNA half life is fairly short. We could probably clone a pharoah if it weren't for the legal and ethical stickyness. Or maybe a mammoth or thylacine could be respeciated. But any farther back than ten thousand years, without exceptionally good conditions, and it's too degraded.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2018, 12:55:03 pm by Hanslanda »
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Well, we could put two and two together and write a book: "The Shit that Hans and Max Did: You Won't Believe This Shit."
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KittyTac

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #35 on: April 30, 2018, 09:38:46 am »

Were the pyramids made to preserve the dna of the entombed?
Make a big enough mound of dirt and you'll last long enough to get resurrected in a form.
Or is the half life too short for omelets

Egyptians did not know about DNA, unless you are a conspiracy theorist.
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Trekkin

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #36 on: April 30, 2018, 10:59:28 am »

You act as if I didn't arrive at this question myself, and arrived here because a bunch of snake oil salesmen told me that's the case. And also, you act as if consciousness isn't a... thing. Just a set of incredibly complex behaviours. Well yes, it is a set of incredibly complex behaviours, but the thing is it's also a consciousness because... well, I'm conscious. At the very least I'm 100% aware of that one, everyone else could just be a load of pseudo-intelligent bollocks for all I know, but at least you're mimicking it well enough for me to 100% believe everyone else is also conscious. I did like that one that taat mentioned of "You think you're conscious because the brain makes you", that one sort of helps a bit.

I act that way because both of those things are true. Consciousness is not more than the sum of its component processes, and you take the axiom that it must be because that's how you've been trained to frame the question.
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Hanslanda

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #37 on: April 30, 2018, 12:59:00 pm »

Were the pyramids made to preserve the dna of the entombed?
Make a big enough mound of dirt and you'll last long enough to get resurrected in a form.
Or is the half life too short for omelets

Egyptians did not know about DNA, unless you are a conspiracy theorist.

I tried to insert the Aliens meme but I couldn't get it to work.

So just imagine it instead.
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Well, we could put two and two together and write a book: "The Shit that Hans and Max Did: You Won't Believe This Shit."
He's fucking with us.

Maximum Spin

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #38 on: April 30, 2018, 02:15:44 pm »

I act that way because both of those things are true. Consciousness is not more than the sum of its component processes, and you take the axiom that it must be because that's how you've been trained to frame the question.
Consciousness doesn't have component processes; it's not a thing or a process, it's an effect. Consciousness, if it's even real, is the observable outcome of... something. Saying "it's complex feedback loops" is just as much an appeal to ~~mysteriousness~~ as saying "it's souls".
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Trekkin

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #39 on: May 01, 2018, 11:31:49 am »

Once again, I'm liking that.

I think I'm basically missing something when it comes to the idea of what a consciousness is. Being an effect of a number of complex interactions makes sense to me, though it's still buggering me up mentally trying to work out how that happens. I suspect nobody really knows that, else we'd probably be much closer to making actual advanced GAI.

Well, it's a question of what consciousness is versus what it does, since people often try to define the former via the latter. We are conscious and animals (or plants) are not because we [some verb], etc. If you want to make a mind that can do X specific thing, it's fairly straightforward to map out the resources required to do X thing and how they'd have to be organized. People just don't agree with any specificity on what things conscious minds do that nonconscious minds do not, and without a workable set of requirements to translate into physical processes we can't form a satisfactory definition of the properties that define a conscious mind.

This stands in stark contrast to something like mathematical computation. We know what arithmetic is, and so we can design structures for doing arithmetic (modulo any pedantry about what those structures are actually doing relative to the meaning we assign their physical and informatic state), plug them into each other and their supporting bits, circle it all and say "that's a calculator", and we'll know we've got the best definition we can when we can't remove anything from the circled bit without stopping it from doing arithmetic.
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Maximum Spin

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #40 on: May 01, 2018, 05:33:57 pm »

So, firstly, the argument about whether consciousness "exists" is stupid, because the definition is tautological. We have consciousness. That is, effectively, the definition of consciousness. It's not so much a matter of whether it exists, but whether it's unique to us in any way at all. At that point you can start breaking down exactly what consciousness means in terms of who we are, listing off the various characteristics, and attempt to determine if animals or other such systems share in those characteristics. To what extent it's possible to design a system that matches all these characteristics is really the question regarding the uniqueness of consciousness.
That would be fine if people did define consciousness that way; when I say "consciousness isn't real", what I mean is "whatever it is that we have that we perceive as consciousness doesn't really work the way we have socially defined consciousness to denote."
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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #41 on: May 01, 2018, 08:07:36 pm »

We're going to need, like, 20 years to keep AIs from producing feedback loops like this one alone.
Man, that's optimistic. Tens of thousands of years and humans *still* get sucked into them.
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roseheart

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #42 on: May 01, 2018, 08:38:03 pm »

Six

FallacyofUrist

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #43 on: May 02, 2018, 11:04:49 am »

Brown is like, the worst color. It's even more boring than black.
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KittyTac

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Re: Random thoughts
« Reply #44 on: May 03, 2018, 02:49:22 am »

White is also pretty boring.
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