Re: AI:This is how we do it

From: Damien R. Sullivan (
Date: Tue Feb 19 2002 - 12:32:45 MST

On Mon, Feb 18, 2002 at 11:48:40PM -0800, James Rogers wrote:

> >From this perspective, AI doesn't need to do anything at all and probably
> couldn't, beyond acting as an efficient recording device perhaps.

In _Look to Windward_ Banks says "perfect [unbiased] AIs always
Sublime". Lacking anything tying them to the universe they head
straight for godhood. In real life, I suspect a perfect AI would just
sit there.

> results the designer intends. There is a good argument to be made that a
> constantly biased AI engine will do far more interesting things in the long

There is?

> I think it might be perfectly valid to classify AI as either "externally
> biased" or "internally biased" depending on how the biasing mechanisms are

I was reading through someone's copy of GURPS Transhuman Space
yesterday. Fun. Had some useful terms: infomorphs for any digital mind
(did they get that from Egan?), ghosts (perfect and destructive upload)
shadows (cheap hack upload from nondestructive scanning). At any rate,
it also distinguished between non-sapient AIs, low-sapient AIs, and
fully sapient AIs. The boundaries weren't exactly clear, especially
between the latter two; the second might not be has "humanly creative"
as the third. But it was suggested the first was capable of some
self-awareness, but lacking its own goals, or something. A really smart
command shell, perhaps, vs. AIs capable of coming up with their own
tasks even while not executing an orders. AIs capable of being bored,

I don't really like the GURPS terms there, or even the conceptual
divisions -- non-sapient AIs would be "not creative", but Hofstadter's
work is aimed at precisely 'non-sapient' (not self-directed) but
self-aware AIs which are highly creative in doing their assigned task.
But the attempt at a conceptual division was interesting.

> wired into the general intelligence engine. I can also imagine the
> political and legal fallout in a useless attempt to regulate specific
> capabilities in this vein.
In GURPS it wasn't useless. Ghosts can't legally have multiple copies
running, sapient AIs have various legal and maybe moral constraints and
inhibitions wired in; rogue AIs lacking those get whacked on sight.

-xx- Damien X-)

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