Re: Near-term stuff (was: Singurapture)

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Sun Apr 29 2001 - 12:59:25 MDT

Anders Sandberg continues near-term stuff,
> Actually, the only defense that can ever work is a defense that works even
> when the enemy knows how it works. Security through obscurity is not safe.
> you really think that it would be possible or desirable to keep the
> functioning of an organisation that would likely involve thousands of
> different groups secret?

Ah, so! In that case, whoever manages to get the most and best cooperation and
collaborative security wins. So, who's most popular, the inscrutible Chinese
or the decadent Americans. No contest. Nothing to worry about. End of story.
Thanks for solving that one.

> I thought you wanted to *avoid* abusive states? :-)

Right, and there are more abusive states around here (Arizona, Oregon, Nevada,
etc.). You only have to deal with one abusive city-state (which China probably
won't try to annex). τΏτ

> It is a bit of wishful thinking: if we create something complex enough it
> will become intelligent. There is not a shred of evidence for that
> since intelligent thought requires a rather sophisticated and deliberate
> organisation, so it is unlikely to occur by chance. On the other hand, as
> Spike alluded, the effect of billions of people writing, linking and
> modifying the Net does introduce an element of intelligence. So my answer
> would be that we should look more for something like the global intelligence
> of the EarthWeb in Marc Stiegler's novel rather than a god awakening to the
> sound of all phones ringing.

OK, that puts a Global Brain beyond near-term stuff (except for fantasies
about "Gaia").

My most pressing near-term extropian issue is to find out why Bill Joy, and a
few of his pals, who seem like such intelligent and practical folks, have gone
off the deep end with a self-contradictory position of trying to stay in
control by "relinquishing" experimentation. How can they think that makes
sense? Are they frightened out of their wits?

Stay hungry,

--J. R.

Useless hypotheses:
 consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind, free will, qualia,
analog computing, cultural relativism

     Everything that can happen has already happened, not just once,
     but an infinite number of times, and will continue to do so forever.
     (Everything that can happen = more than anyone can imagine.)

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