Re: Ethics and the Public

From: Dani Eder (
Date: Tue Jan 29 2002 - 12:11:52 MST

> Suppose the UN decides to ban all
> Singularity-related research because it is
> "incompatible with human dignity". If I understand
> you correctly, you would
> go ahead anyway to the best of your ability?
> The reason I ask is because I think that this is the
> most likely outcome if
> a sufficient number of people understood the concept
> of the Singularity and
> believed that it was a real possibility. The UN is
> now debating a world-wide
> ban on human cloning for no other reason than that
> cloning is scary stuff
> (see "dignity" above). And as you all know, the
> implications of cloning is
> nothing compared to those of the Singularity.

The problem with that supposition is that all
technology development is 'singularity related',
because the Singularity is simply the endpoint of
progress in technology accelerating due to a positive
feddback loop.

For example, I'm buying shares in a company called
International High Tech Industries (symbol: IHITF).
They have patents on highly automated building
panel production. In theory they will lower building
construction costs by 30% by greatly reducing the
human labor input, which is typically 50% today. Now,
if chip-makers use this to reduce the cost of chip
factories, and thus reduce the cost of chips, it
makes it easier to reach whatever threshhold is
required for an AI to run.

Stopping the Singularity would amount to nearly
stopping all technology development, and definitely
stopping the high rate of improvement in computers
and automation. Somehow, I don't see that happening.


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