Re: Envisioning sysop scenarios Re: Universal Uplift as an alternativeto the Sysop scenario

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Sat Mar 24 2001 - 18:22:36 MST

xgl wrote:

> friendly in the context of the si goal system is merely a
> label for something vastly more complex than a human concept. violence is
> an anthropomorphic term. i guess we can attribute violence to si warfare
> to the extent that when intoxicated, we might attribute cruelty to the
> laws of physics.

Violence is not a anthropomorphic term. If a sentient practices
physical destructiveness against another sentient that is violence
regardless of what kind of being the sentient is. Warfare is violent
regardless of the entities involved as it is a state of determined
violent conflict by definition. However, I don't believe self-defense
against violence initiated by another is in the same league as initiated

> > I find this very hard to believe. If nothing else, the Friendly
> > SI would be limited in its actions (collateral damage, avoid excessively
> > devastating attacks, etc). In a perfectly even match the individual with
> > the least restrictions usually wins.
> >
> hmmm ... the fsi's super-goal is something like "protect human
> beings" ... while the ufsi's super-goal, in the very worst case, would be
> "destroy human beings" ... seems like a pretty symmetrical situation to
> me.

I think that misses the point. The point was the ufsi without
constraints to protect humans or other beings can employ means that the
fsi cannot and some of those means may be overwhelming.
> of course, there might be a slight symmetry-breaking since human
> beings are to a certain extent self-destructive ... or at least easily
> perishable. however, to what extent this is significant to an si, is open
> to speculation. moreover, it is pretty unlikely that the fsi and the ufsi
> are going to be so closely matched at all. either the creation of the fsi
> precedes that of the ufsi, in which case the fsi has a head start in an
> exponential growth race, or the ufsi is not of human origin, in which case
> all bets are off. in fact, my current understanding of si ecology suggests
> that interstellar migration would incur severe costs for a mature si.

The significance of the perishability of humans (assuming no backups
etc) is open to speculation for a fsi? If so then I don't understand
"friendly". It is by no means certain that SIs will simply
exponentially increase their capabilities for all time as a primary
task. I would expect some variability of resources devoted to this
compared to resources devoted to other goals and interests. It is by no
means certain that the SI that existed first is the clear winner in a
conflict. Perhaps the first has devoted less resources to warfare
techniques than the "younger" SI.

- samantha

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