Re: Uploads and betrayal

D.den Otter (
Wed, 01 Dec 1999 23:51:18 +0100

> From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky <>

> But if you get
> that far, please allow me to offer my services. I'll run you all
> through the uploading machinery, start you all up simultaneously, and
> then walk away. Please feel free to take advantage of the lemming's
> touching faith and altruism.

You wouldn't be abandoning your supergoal, so it would hardly be a sacrifice from your pov. Real altruism involves sacrifice IMO. But call it what you will, it doesn't matter.

> In fact, you could even upload me, then ask me to act as a judge to
> ensure that others are upgraded in synchrony, or even to do the
> upgrading, although I wouldn't be upgraded myself. Don't trust me?
> Can't see my source code? I could write an AI for you who would do the
> same thing...

You're clever enough, I presume, to hide just about anything in its source code, so once again it would all come down to trust. But ok, you can probably be trusted more than most people. Anyway, if you're serious about writing a specialized AI for human uploading, I'd be more than willing to help in any way possible. It would indeed be an elegant compromize; you get your Singularity (and be pretty sure that you'd be around to see how it turns out-- nice bonus) and those who wish do do so get their shot at godhood. Like I've said before, we need some kind of "ascension initiative". Whether it's to save the world, to cause a Singularity or for personal gain doesn't matter; we all need more or less the same thing, so it would be wise to cooperate.

> Okay, so on your list of blatant technological impossibilities, ranging
> from perfect uploading developed without a testing stage,

Of course there would be a testing stage for uploading, using animals of varying complexity. If you can upload a chimp successfully, then the same can be done with humans. And maybe there never will be a single uploading procedure, but rather a gradual integration of various hardware into the body and brain until, finally, the biological parts will have become redundant. This would presumably eliminate many of the risks associated with the synchronized uploading approach.

> to uploading
> developed before nanotechnological weaponry,

No, a viable off-planet colony has to be developed before the advent of "practical" nanotechnological weaponry. If nanotech comes before transhuman AI, you'll probably need one too.