Re: Shock Level 5 (SL5) - 'The Theory Of Everything'

From: Jef Allbright (
Date: Wed Aug 17 2005 - 23:31:19 MDT

Samantha Atkins wrote:

>On 8/15/05, Thomas Buckner <> wrote:
>>I'm very interested in knowing the Theory of
>>Everything; I just don't know if I would
>>recognize it when I saw it.
>>One of Geddes's main contentions is that
>>intelligence above a certain level is inherently
>>altruistic. I prefer to believe this, but I don't
>>think it's provable pre-Singularity.
>A good argument might me made (I am not currently volunteering one)
>that non-alturistic intelligences of sufficient power are inherently
>self-limiting, mutually destructive and perhaps even self-destructive.
> Thus altruism might be the only strategy allowing continued
>development/existence. Perhaps the solution of the Fermi Paradox is
>that this workable strategy is not arrived at all that often.
>- samantha
While I agree with this assertion in a certain sense, it may be worth
pointing out that altruism evolved because it enhances the fitness of
the group, rather than directly benefiting any individual. It would be
irrational for any independent "intelligence" to be altruistic in the
classical/literal sense of caring more for others than oneself.

On the other hand, for an individual operating within a network of
interdependent relationships, altruism, perhaps more accurately called
enlightened self-interest, tends to be an effective strategy due to the
synergetic advantages of cooperation.

- Jef

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