RE: An essay I just wrote on the Singularity.

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Sun Jan 04 2004 - 15:12:24 MST


For some of us, expressing thoughts in mathematics is habitual, even in
cases where the tools of math aren't useful for proving anything.... I
assume everyone on this list is skeptic enough to understand that, just
because a thought is expressed in quasi-math-language, that doesn't make it
any more profound, important, true, etc.

I do believe, however, that for superhuman AI's in the future, mathematics
WILL be a useful tool for moral philosophy. It's rarely useful for humans
in this context, simply because our ability to make precise calculations
regarding moral situations is generally very poor (usually due to data
gathering issues more than calculation-related issues).

In fact, I can easily envision a future argument between super-smart AI's
regarding the optimal value of some parameter much like my "c" parameter....
Perhaps the outcome of the argument would be an adjustment to the amount of
time the human population gets to spend hooked up to the AI-created
Orgasmotron ;-)

-- Ben G

> -----Original Message-----
> From: []On Behalf Of Elaine
> and Andy
> Sent: Sunday, January 04, 2004 4:34 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: An essay I just wrote on the Singularity.
> Ben Goetzel wrote:
> what if I propose that morality is tied instead
> to a weighted average c * (positive qualia -
> negative qualia) + (1-c)* (total complexity of
> pattern)
> for some 0<c<1
> Moi:
> Since you are not Adam Sokal and this is the sl4 list, not
> 'Social Text,' I respond:
> Mathematics is not a useful tool for moral philosophy.
> Andy

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