Re: Building Robigotchi

From: Adrian Tymes (
Date: Mon Oct 09 2000 - 01:25:41 MDT

"J. R. Molloy" wrote:
> Adrian Tymes wrote,
> > One who wishes to see a
> > self-aware, self-actuating soul will see one; one who wishes to see a
> > construct will see one; the difference comes out when the two views
> > collide - and since the construct view demonstrably applies with no
> > conflicts, it wins. (Not sure under what conditions the soul view would
> > win as absolutely, but there are many situations where neither one would
> > be a clear winner.)
> I think you have a very solid understanding of the mechanisms involved in this
> particular type of anthropomorphizing. The "soul view" wins, IMO, primarily when
> those espousing it use force or coercion to silence opponents, as in the realm
> of religion and mysticism.

Point taken, but the construct view can "win" under the same
circumstances. And it is, at best, a short-term win: oppression breeds
resentment, which attracts people to the opposition, and encourages the
use of more force by both sides (thus spending resources that could be
used for other things - best example: wars). Enlightenment, education,
and open debate, on the other hand, attracts people to the side best
supported by the facts - whether or not that side starts off dominant.

I was talking about the more permanent win. Most of today's first world
citizens, for instance, agree on the mechanism by which modern human
beings come into being, and hold a markedly different view than their
ancestors of some millenia ago.

> ("This widget is a sacred god, and those who do not believe must be sacrificed
> by having their bodies disassembled for parts." --Chief Sheatonetoo)

Have you ever read the stories behind Battletech, in particular Comstar?
(For those who haven't: Comstar started out as an interstellar
telephone network, which devolved over time into a religious group that
honestly believed that one had to execute a certain prayer - not
involving any interface with the machinery - just so in order to send a

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