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

From: Brian Atkins (
Date: Sat Mar 24 2001 - 19:20:52 MST

Ben Goertzel wrote:
> > 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.
> But Samantha, the notion of "physical destructiveness" is itself
> anthropomorphic.


> In what sense is deleting a program from RAM or disk "physically
> destructive"?
> No physical object is being destroyed.

If I use some nanotech to eat your computing substrate that is destructive.
Even swiping a magnet over a hard drive could be considered physical
destruction, or an EMP through a chip.

> It seems to me that, potentially, for software minds there is less of a
> distinction between mind and body than for physically-embodied minds. (And,
> as an aside there is also less of a distinction between self and other,
> potentially (merging of minds becomes much easier).) Many aspects of the
> concept of physical destructiveness as we conceive it, will not apply in
> this context.

I disagree since obviously even post-Singulary you have to run your mind
on some kind of substrate. Whether it is distributed, backed-up, or even
"pure energy" ala Star Trek it still can be attacked using physical means.

Brian Atkins
Director, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

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