Re: A position

From: Jimmy Wales (
Date: Wed May 23 2001 - 18:29:52 MDT

Well, I think this topic will quickly get too philosophical for this list,
so I'll let it go.

Suffice to say that some substantial subset of the
transhumanist/libertarian/Objectivist/singularist population is going
to be annoyed by casual use of the word 'altruism'. On that grounds
alone, I advise against using it. :-)

In any event, having reviewed section 2.2 of CFAI, I would like to
reiterate the claim that 'altruism' is the wrong word to use in
relation to a Yudkowsky-Friendly AI. I quote: " AI isn't selfish
or altruistic; an AI is an AI. An AI is not a human who has
selflessly renounced personal interests in favor of the community; an
AI is not a human with the value of the node-that-is-this-node set to
zero; an AI is a mind that just cares about other things, not because
the 'selfish' part has been ripped out or brainwashed or suppressed,
but because the AI doesn't have anything there."

Never the less, I think that Yudkowsky is wrong on this point. I think
that a superintelligence will be an ethical egoist. (It wouldn't be very
intelligent if it were anything but...)


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