Can a man-made computer become conscious?

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Jan Sand
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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » June 22nd, 2018, 3:09 am

To examine religions, ideals, hopes and wishes with a realistic eye and compare them to the actualities of performance it is impossible to accept anything but disappointment and outright disgust at humanity's actualities and disdain for decency and conformity to any noble purpose, Our present expectations clearly demonstrate how the best of understandings and intentions have been disastrously twisted to spread human misery and total neglect of the necessities for even a marginally decent future. Hatred and fear of each other is a well established tactic of those who would control the planet and every major advance in human understanding is violently distorted towards final total destruction. This is too obvious to deny.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Belindi » June 22nd, 2018, 7:07 am

Jan Sand wrote:
June 22nd, 2018, 3:09 am
To examine religions, ideals, hopes and wishes with a realistic eye and compare them to the actualities of performance it is impossible to accept anything but disappointment and outright disgust at humanity's actualities and disdain for decency and conformity to any noble purpose, Our present expectations clearly demonstrate how the best of understandings and intentions have been disastrously twisted to spread human misery and total neglect of the necessities for even a marginally decent future. Hatred and fear of each other is a well established tactic of those who would control the planet and every major advance in human understanding is violently distorted towards final total destruction. This is too obvious to deny.

You and many others are not deluded.The very fact that you wrote the above is good , not bad.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » June 22nd, 2018, 7:49 am

I grew up back in the early 1930's in New York City and there is no doubt these were terrible times between the two world wars. Nevertheless there was a huge underlying hope of advances of civilization's potentials which culminated in the New York World's Fair in 1939. The Roosevelt Administration fought vainly to reach down into the misery to initiate better times and it was only the huge industrial and technical development of the Second World War that permitted the country to move forward to a better economy and the defeat of the Axis dictators permitted the short good times after the war in the USA for good hopes for the future. Europe and much of Asia had been destroyed in the war and the USA seized this opportunity to reassert the economic and financial leaders that had led to the crash of 1929 to spiral civilization back down to the hopelessness throughout the world today. But the huge growth of technological and scientific understanding has been used to both open new human potentials and divert almost all the rewards of these potentials to the quite psychotic and powerful leaders to further massacre many millions of helpless populations throughout the world to gain wealth and power for the minuscule few who have little if any concern for humanity in general or the survivability of life on the planet. This is the way of humanity for many thousands of years and the likelihood of a major change seems vanishingly small. As someone who has lived through times of great hopes I can only feel miserable for the way humanity has performed but well understand that I can have no effective power to change it.

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SimpleGuy
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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by SimpleGuy » June 22nd, 2018, 10:13 am

The problem is to describe consciousness, out of the reign of mathematical and computer scientific thinking. Is consciousness not connected to social activity . Intelligence is one thing consciousness is more than a signature unification based believe desire intention network.

Jan Sand
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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » June 22nd, 2018, 10:28 am

The latest exercises in computer learning involve directing a computer to search an area of discovery to become proficient in a particular discipline without specific directions as to how to accomplish that expertise and the successes in this methodology frequently have been indicated as auto innovation of the computer to the extent that the human programmers have no concept as to what the computer had evolved on it own to become so successful. I cannot evaluate that this involved at least a modicum of consciousness but it seems to me something of that sort has come about.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Belindi » June 23rd, 2018, 5:11 am

There is a tendency for the powerful to be selfish after the old model of aristocracies. There have been times when religious or political ideologies were strong enough to make proles rebel however there are now active ideologies only of fear such as islamism or North Korea's founded with its dear leader cult.

Jan, the way America and Europe are governed now is much like the governing elite are selfish 'aristocrats'.China and India are fast going the same way. The old aristocratic dynasties were counterbalanced by religious structures of governance, typical of Christendom in the middle ages of Europe. The religious ideologies are moribund now. However perhaps a new and reasonable religious ideology will appear and arise to lead proles to a greater degree of freedom sufficient to lead to equal distribution of wealth and sustainable farming and energy sources.

Anther question. After the apocalyse, whether this manifests as pandemic, starvation, thirst, or war of attrition, and allowing for a viable natural environment, would there not be pockets of survivors who would revert to old tribal methods of governance? These survivors would of course predominantly include many former aristocrats who like Trump would have avoided much of apocalyptic danger. However Trump types would not adapt well to true natural dangers where lies don't serve.

The refugee crisis can only get more so. African are coming to Europe and will eventually equalise the standard of living between Africa and Europe. Same in the US Mexicans and other emigrants cannot be held off forever unless Trump becomes like Kim Jong Un.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » June 23rd, 2018, 6:47 am

"There is a tendency for the powerful to be selfish after the old model of aristocracies. There have been times when religious or political ideologies were strong enough to make proles rebel however there are now active ideologies only of fear such as islamism or North Korea's founded with its dear leader cult.

Jan, the way America and Europe are governed now is much like the governing elite are selfish 'aristocrats'.China and India are fast going the same way. The old aristocratic dynasties were counterbalanced by religious structures of governance, typical of Christendom in the middle ages of Europe. The religious ideologies are moribund now. However perhaps a new and reasonable religious ideology will appear and arise to lead proles to a greater degree of freedom sufficient to lead to equal distribution of wealth and sustainable farming and energy sources.

Anther question. After the apocalyse, whether this manifests as pandemic, starvation, thirst, or war of attrition, and allowing for a viable natural environment, would there not be pockets of survivors who would revert to old tribal methods of governance? These survivors would of course predominantly include many former aristocrats who like Trump would have avoided much of apocalyptic danger. However Trump types would not adapt well to true natural dangers where lies don't serve.

The refugee crisis can only get more so. African are coming to Europe and will eventually equalise the standard of living between Africa and Europe. Same in the US Mexicans and other emigrants cannot be held off forever unless Trump becomes like Kim Jong Un."

There are many very tentative suppositions in the above quote. To put it bluntly, the unexpected can only be expected. Before the rise of the digital revolution the head of IBM had predicted that around five or six computers would be quite sufficient for the entire world's needs. Technology has a way of revising the whole world in very unexpected ways. Within the territory of this discussion the rise of self programming computers which is occurring right now, whether or not they will acquire self consciousness, is the tip of unknown possibilities that no one can predict. Especially joining with the proliferation of 3D printing and the huge jump in genetic engineering sophistication. The terrain of future fantasy prediction is probably beyond reasonable supposition. The idiotically destructive nature of previous and current government and economic power has a very good chance of wiping the planet back to obliteration of any biologic possibility and the short time for that end seems to be a matter of decades at best, but the mechanical intelligence we have created may survive and prosper. My lack of optimism is rather obvious and I can only hope I am wrong. Whatever the case, if humans do not change radically, they are a lost cause. The end may come with artificial viruses or nuclear weapons or, at end, with bows and arrows or rusty kitchen knives, but humans have always been greatly superior with hatred than with love and that skill seems not to have lessened.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Mark1955 » July 1st, 2018, 1:33 pm

Belindi wrote:
June 22nd, 2018, 2:36 am
Let's also think of soldiers, trained killers who murder to order. Many of the common soldiers who obey orders hate what they do.
Depends on your army, most of the ones I knew seemed quite happy.
If you think you know the answer you probably don't understand the question.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » July 1st, 2018, 2:06 pm

I have no doubt that not only some soldiers of every nation, democratic or otherwise take joy in murdering both soldiers and unarmed civilians but the armed police also behave in a like manner. And there are also military men and police who are horrified at this. Likewise, politicians and business leaders do the same in probably even larger numbers. What this indicates is that one cannot be sure how any human may perform and it is the better part of human wisdom to maintain an attitude of doubt and distrust of anybody holding a weapon or a potential weapon under any circumstances.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Belindi » July 1st, 2018, 3:35 pm

Mark, I meant actually killing people. Killing to order is I understand a skill that has to be indoctrinated, some say that those who kill to order have been brutalised or are too fearful of peer pressure to resist.

Your common sense and prudence is commendable Jan. The United Nations peace keeping forces are distrusted by peoples who have learned general distrust of armed men.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » July 2nd, 2018, 1:59 am

Last night I had a dream of my son who, at the age of three, was struck by an Israeli driver in a sports car who could not pause in his hurry to speed down a suburban road north of Tel Aviv. He spent the rest of his life as a quadriplegic in a hospital in Helsinki since neither the USA where he was born nor Israel whose citizen felt the least responsibility for the disaster. The driver of the car felt no responsibility at all and there was no sense in even being angry with him since he was a mere odd phenomenon of a creature whose total lack of feeling was not my problem. I had to devote myself to keep my son alive and that was not easy. My wife was Finnish and the president of Finland, Kekkonen, retained that sense of human decency which many of us feel is an essential of being human. As it turns out, it seems to be a rather rare talent evident in rather few people who retain some power in the world. My son died at the age of 32 back in 1996 and my wife died about eight years ago. Keeping my son alive and giving him whatever pleasure he could manage became the most important thing in my life and occasionally I succeeded. I very often dream of that wonderful time and its wild close calls of almost losing him. And the significance of being alive is, for me, still within the frantic and wonderful years of that time. I look at the world today now in the hands of the most vicious and stupid people in all of history and I cannot but feel monumental contempt for a species which has been given one of the most uniquely wonderful planets and whose most urgent dynamics is to plunder and destroy its ability to keep the place alive and producing its wonderful products. The mixture of complete tragedy and outrageous very dark humor of the complete idiocy of humanity makes no sense at all to me and I can only accept it as one of my worst nightmares,

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Belindi » July 2nd, 2018, 3:30 am

Dear Jan your life has taught you thus. Who can deny that bad people live and thrive. The very fact that you wrote this account of what happened and that you interpret it and extrapolate from it as you do is evidence that there is light.

Power is not the same as power to good . That sense of human decency is a source of power, and is not dead yet.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » July 2nd, 2018, 4:22 am

Obviously whatever saving grace is involved in my experience derives from the frantic help the medical people in Israel, Holland, and Helsinki that saved and sustained my son's life and to deny that effort as inherent in vital sectors of humanity is most blind and unjust. And even the driver of the car responsible for the whole era of misery cannot be held to account anymore than a lightning bolt or an erupting volcano can be demanded to correct itself for being what it is. One must not demand of the unraveling of causes into effects to be other than the capabilities they exhibit, but spend effort in dealing with those effects to maximize what good is left possible.

In the case of humanity now voraciously intent on destroying this planet and its inhabitants for gains that cannot be separated from immense stupidity and massive incapability to grasp how psychotically insane events are progressing, I can accept this as indicating that all of past human history clearly demonstrates that humanity has always demonstrated that the most self interested and most callous individuals have always been the most powerful in directing human civilization. On that basis I am completely foolish to expect any other outcome than the frightful collapse of everything I had hoped for in the development of civilization. Those now struggling to preserve the planet and sectors of humanity that believe in a decent and caring society are obviously succumbing to the the intensely aroused forces of hatred and disdain and brutality and tsunami of fear now controlling the dynamics of civilization throughout the world and whoever attempts to stop that is quickly crushed. I would, of course, like to be hopeful , but I am too stupid to find a way. I am quite limited in this matter.

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Belindi » July 2nd, 2018, 5:45 am

Jan Sand wrote:
One must not demand of the unraveling of causes into effects to be other than the capabilities they exhibit, but spend effort in dealing with those effects to maximize what good is left possible.
I get swept up in your pessimism. I wonder why I try to rebut it. I wonder if I am using this forum as a diversion. I hope not. It becomes more and more apparent that you yourself are genuine in your posts.

The enormity of evil has always been visible throughout man's past. So that actualised evils can be dealt with we have to use causality in as much depth as we are capable of. One of the variables that causes evil is ignorance as you have pretty well stated. Another variable that causes evil is ideology which takes precedence over facts. I don't class pessimism or optimism as ideologies , as pessimism and optimism are attitudes that lack narratives.

With regard to US politics today, there are Americans who support the force of ignorance, and those Americans are optimists. Pessimism is a safer attitude.

AI machines lack attitude.Don't they?

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Re: Can a man-made computer become conscious?

Post by Jan Sand » July 2nd, 2018, 6:37 am

Do not let my viewpoint discourage you. If you are capable and have the energy to be effective in bringing about a better prospect please do so. I grew up as a child in Brooklyn very optimistic over possibilities but never learned to become what may be considered human. I sympathized with butterflies and dogs and cats and even had a wonderful pair of white rats for friends. Humans always struck me as dangerous and peculiar and although I loved my wife and kids there always were some areas where the things that people take for granted in others never were part of my understandings, so things have been difficult. so don't take me so seriously.

I must admit that what happened in my life gave me a rather different point of view and at 92 I cannot expect to have any major changes. I might live a couple of more years and still have no major health difficulties but cannot see humanity undergoing a kind of change that might save the world - the potential simply is not evident.I grew up under Franklin Roosevelt and as relatively decent as he was he refused a shipload of Jews to enter the USA when they were desperate to escape the Nazis and no president after him ever reached his level of compassion and all his efforts to save the USA from its economic collapse in the depression were pretty weak compared to the huge upsurge of economics as a result of WWII. It seems that wars have become the most effective basis of economic progress humanity has evolved and killing people and stealing their resources has worked wonders right from the beginning of the USA and for many other countries as well. With the latest in nuclear weaponry and the conflicts over destructive energy sources the inevitable destruction of the sustaining life on the planet appears to me to be reaching the point that it cannot be reversed. It is important to understand that neither Trump nor Hitler nor Stalin nor any of the most frightful leaders of humanity could have been granted the power to do what they desired without the will and cooperation of the massive support of their people. It is humanity itself that must take credit and guilt for what was and is being done and who must suffer the consequences. No doubt the Holocaust. amongst all other major tragedies, was horrible but Israel probably would not exist without it. Whatever that means is a bit more than I prefer to contemplate, and what it implies about humanity I would rather not get into at the moment.

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