Re: Intelligence increase

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Mon Oct 02 2000 - 15:28:34 MDT

Dan Fabulich astutely pointed out,

> Yes, but suppose that in order to get a linear increase in
> intelligence, you had to solve a problem requiring an exponential
> number of computations. Sure, for each increase in intelligence,
> you'd start churning through the next exponent faster, but there'd be
> so much more thinking you'd have to do to get another increase that
> actual progress would get slower and slower.

Okay, I see what you mean. (This list is not unmindful of previous posts stating
Dan's point, I'd guess. No doubt the old thread restlessly abides in the
archives.) So we're faced with this threshold of intelligence amplification that
thwarts efforts to transcend present levels of intellectual acumen. Bother. Now,
what I'd suggest is that rather than crucifying or expelling or banning or
excommunicating or pilloring the hyper-intelligent (as we've been wont to do
with such heretics as Buddha, Bodhidharma, Galileo, and Darwin), we should
instead try to learn from them. A radical idea, I know... but maybe its time has

> Of course, nobody has any idea how much computation is required to
> increase one's own intelligence, since, at present, what with our wet
> brains and all, even if we knew what to do to our brains, we don't
> have the fine-grained tools to implement our plans.

Right, and furthermore, we don't know how to protect super-high IQ brains from
Fundamentalist wackos who want to send us all to hell (after beheading us,
putting us before firing squads, or simply ignoring us while building bigger
cathedrals, mosques, and temples). In the long run, creating superintelligence
may be the easy part. Protecting AI from fascistic control freaks who want to
make humanity into a zoo/museum of political correctitude governed by a
socialist hive mentality may be the difficult part.

> For all we know, it'll turn out that exponential increases in
> intelligence requires solving a problem requiring a linearly
> increasing number of steps, and just as soon as we get the tools to
> start messing around, our intelligence will go through the roof.
> (This is the Singularity picture.) Frankly, we're basically in the
> dark here.

A single candle can dispel infinite darkness.

--J. R.

"Be a light unto yourself."
--Siddhartha Gautama

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