Re: Humour

Anders Sandberg (
Fri, 27 Dec 1996 15:31:49 +0100 (MET)

On Thu, 26 Dec 1996, Eliezer Yudkowsky wrote:

> That was a very interesting post; it didn't make any sense at all.

That was a very interesting line, it didn't make any sense at all. :-)
(Sorry, I couldn't resist. The quoted line is definitely going into my
quote collection)

> There are mathematical spaces, derived from mathematics. There are
> color spaces of hue, saturation, and intensity, derived from cognitive
> science. There are space-times, derived from physics. Physics, math,
> cognitive science - which of these is your "deity space" derived from?
> >From your post, I'm guessing cognitive science.

That seems most likely. The definition of "space" in cognitive science is
quite loose, and perhaps more akin to a set. As a partial mathematician I
sometimes wince at how the word is used - defining a neighborhood in a
conceptual space is hard.

> Well, by the power vested in me by being "Mr. Singularity", I pronounce
> your "deity space" null and void. I have no reason whatsoever to
> believe that a Power would fit in whatever cognitive space controls our
> perception of really powerful beings. As far as I can tell, the epitome
> of your average "deity space" is a human at the top of the pecking
> order, someone who does whatever the imaginer would do if granted
> unlimited power.

Yes. Does this make deity space pointless? Not at all. If Powers emerge,
then they might be the truly powerful beings, while humans continue to be
impressed by their user interfaces, pets or garbage (not to mention
posthumans with a sense of humour who play gods, of course. Anybody care
for a post-singularity masquerade on mount Olympus?).

What is important to realize that real power, perceived power, divinity,
and the beliefs of people are interlinked in interesting and important
ways. Whatever tools helps us to understand this area (such as deity
spaces) are useful.

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y