RE: Re[6]: continuity of self [ was META: Sept. 11 and Singularity]

From: Chris Rae (
Date: Tue Sep 17 2002 - 08:00:41 MDT

Hi Ben,

>Chris, have you traveled much outside the Western world?

Not to the less developed parts. This interpretation is based on what I
have read.

>The true goal of the Singularity is NOT merely to improve human lives.
>This is ONE goal. The advancement of mind in (this part of) the universe to
>a new level is also a valid and valuable goal, quite separately from the
>improvement of human lives.
>If NO human lives were improved at all by the Singularity, but a tremendous
>new form of intelligence were created, I'd consider the Singularity very

I guess that's a matter of personal preference. I personally consider the
first priority of the singularity should be to lift the poorest people of
the planet out of poverty.

>Finally, it could easily be argued that the job of convincing people the
>Singularity is good will be much easier once tech has advanced another 20
>years. A direct *demonstration* of the superiority of tech-enhanced ways of
>life will go a lot further than any arguments we can pose. So there's a
>good argument for keeping the evangelism low-key until we truly have tech to
>back it up.

I think it's valuable to introduce people to the general concepts that the
singularity will provide, such as abundance. Not only will this make the
transition from pre to post singularity quicker and easier, it will also
protect against malicious people's desire to disrupt the process. Take the
recording industry association of America example mentioned previously. The
natural course of events will (eventually) see music distributed over the
internet. However, the RIAA, which is currently opposing the move because
it stands to loose money, is fast becoming public enemy number 1.

Also, if people can see the general trend and where it's heading they will
be more willing to embrace it when it arrives. I think that with the
technology that will reach the marketplace in the next 20 years will
achieve this goal anyway.

>a) more R&D funding [though industry seems to be doing OK on its own,
>generally speaking, clearly things could do better -- the world governments
>could start a few Manhattan Projects for AGI, for example, resulting in
>Novamente, SIAI and A2I2 and so forth suddenly getting well-funded]
>b) fewer Luddites, ergo less chance of Singularity researchers getting
>detonated when S-Day gets nearer...

I don't trust centralized control as far as I can kick it! Openness is the key.


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