Re: No AI for Nano/No Nano for copyloads

Date: Thu Jul 13 2000 - 12:48:50 MDT

Robert writes:
> Unless you can take the consciousness out of the machine there
> are going to be a lot of people arguing you can't use it as
> a slave. If it is a free agent, then a lot of legal groundwork
> will need to be laid for it to act as an economic agent (have
> a S.S. number, pay taxes, etc.). Then if it doesn't own its
> hardware it could end up paying hefty lease fees to IBM or whomever
> does own it. Looks like a swamp to me.

And if you make a copy, isn't that a new person, and if so, don't they
need a new SS number? And what about immigration laws? If an upload
is emailed across the border, do they need a passport?

It seems almost comical to consider these questions. Uploads somehow
don't fit into the world as we know it.

This suggests to me that uploading won't be something that happens off
in a lab somewhere without anyone caring until success is achieved.
Just as we have seen with Bill Joy's discovery of new technologies, the
ideas we have been discussing for years will gradually become part of the
mainstream. As uploading starts to become possible in the near future,
people from all walks of life will begin to consider the consequences.

There will come a time when the prospect of uploading will be discussed
by columnists, theologians, and politicians. People will grapple with
the questions: Shall we do this? Should it be allowed? What are the
rights of the uploaded person?

My guess is that the situation will be somewhat similar to human cloning.
There will be a moratorium on experiments with human beings until the
ethical and legal issues can be settled.

I don't know how well these kinds of restrictions will work, but I
suspect that over the next few decades we will see many technologies
being limited in this way, nanotech in particular. Research doesn't
happen in a vaccuum, and once people understand the potential changes
these technologies will bring, they and their political representatives
will want to control the impact.


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