Re: From chaos to minds (was Re: Military in or out?)

From: Mark Walker (
Date: Wed Feb 28 2001 - 03:33:29 MST

> Not
> only in minds, but in general we see that there is emergent behavior.
> Even outside of living systems there is emergent behavior. If you
> look at crystels, they contain complex patterns that develop out of a
> few ridges. On a much larger scale, planets organize themsleves into
> systems around stars and stars organize into galaxies and galaxies
> into clusters and so on. When we look at the universe, it always
> grows to levels of more and more order. From this, it would be
> reasonable to state that minds will always emerge and that they will
> likely work the way they do on Earth. Why? For the same reason that
> stars in one galaxy behave the same way as those in another:
> symmetry. Unless symmetry is proven to be broken in some way, all
> minds will eventually work the same way (though the intermediary
> steps may vary a bit). Personally, I doubt that symmetry would bend
> for something like the mind, which is just much better organized
> matter, when it has proven ridge with unorganized and somewhat
> organized matter.
> --
One way to think of the problem is whether minds are all of a species or a
genus. If minds are all of a species then your elaboration of the celestial
analogy holds. If minds form a genus then from your celestial analogy we
might have to say that what develops are different types of minds,
supernovaminds, neutronminds, blackholeminds, darkminds, etc. (Or to scale
it down, gravityminds, electromagnetic minds, strong and weak minds). Which
it is I don't know. But the conservative hypothesis when coding an AI would
be to assume the genus hypothesis so as to be vigianlt that it is friendly.
> But we do have enough data to make conclusions about the universe (at
> least this part of it) in general, which minds are a part of and
> must, therefore, conform to. >
If minds are but a species then perhaps we have some reason to suppose that
our conclusions about the universe are reasonably complete. However, if
minds form a genus then we have to worry about how complete our description
of the universe is. (How does the universe look from the point of view of
another species of mind?) To argue from the completeness of our physical
description to the species view of mind seems to prejudge the issue. To
argue from the species view of mind to the completeness of our physical
description seems to prejudge the issue. Mark.

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