Top products from r/singularity

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Top comments that mention products on r/singularity:

u/Congruesome · 1 pointr/singularity

I used to think that a self-aware machine-intelligence was not going to be created by human beings, whether or not such a thing is even possible, but I have started to change my view for a couple of reasons.

One is the understanding that self-awareness, that is, a sense of discrete identity, may not be a necessary component of a high intelligence. An exponentially more intelligent entity than any human might be perfectly possible without that entity being in any way self-aware.

The other thing that may be that if machine AI continues to improve its ability to appear to be self-aware and human-like, it will pass Turing tests based on its sophistication and superior speed, even if it never actually becomes self-aware, and in this case, what's the difference?

Of course, it is useful to keep in mind that in attempting to create machine intelligence comparable to human intelligence, the human intelligence ha the advantage of three billion years of ruthless, make-or-break R & D....

In any case, I am fairly certain it's not such a hot idea.

u/CastigatRidendoMores · 0 pointsr/singularity

Bostrom's Superintelligence covers gene editing very well, but let me summarize:

The singularity isn't likely going to come through gene editing. The reason is it's too difficult to improve on the brain. If you identify which genes are responsible for genius and activate them (which is difficult to say the least), you could get everyone as intelligent as the smartest person yet. But where you do you go from there? You'd have to understand the brain on a level far, far beyond what we do now.

Then if you did that, chances are you'd run up into diminishing gains. It would be a lot of work to increase everyone's IQ by 5 points once, but far more work to figure out how to do it the 10th time. Rather than getting exponentially increasing gains in intelligence, you get logarithmic increases.

Not to say I'm not a fan of gene editing. It's obviously fraught with controversy when used beyond curing disease, but compared to other forms of trans-humanistic techniques it would leave us with a lot more humanity intact.

u/aim2free · 1 pointr/singularity

Is it possibly this book you were talking about. I wrote a review about it earlier (I'm the one with initials R.A.I.O), but still haven't read it, but it seems to discuss my project. My project is to create super strong weak AI to help humanity. That is, it will only be a tool aiding demand driven innovation, without any type of consciousness or self awareness, like wikipedia, google or wolframalpha, but focused on enabling technological evolution, thus freedom and individuality, induce abundance and remove artificial scarcity, thus disable. the incentive for monetary crime.

u/BJHanssen · 8 pointsr/singularity

What you're ignoring is that the gravest insults under which you suffer are perpetrated by those authorities you deem "insufficient". Petty slights in everyday life pale in insignificance compared to the systemic crimes against your rights by the powerful (and are in fact to a large extent caused by these systemic frustrations), and a system like this would do nothing but grant them unprecedented powers to expand these crimes.

Want some literature? Begin with the obvious, Orwell's 1984 and Huxley's Brave New World. Next, read up on complex systems theory, maybe take a course or at least have a look through some of the videos here. Having some insight into behavioural economics and power dynamics is very useful.

Then read Manufacturing Consent by Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman, and then Necessary Illusions by the same Chomsky ("Understanding Power - The Essential Chomsky" is also a good, but long, one) for an overview of the mentioned systemic crimes by those in power, and for a general understanding of how power operates on large scales. Many will discount Chomsky due to his political leanings, I think that's a huge error. The way he argues and presents relies heavily on actual examples and real-world comparisons, and these are useful even if you fundamentally disagree with his political stance (I personally belong on the left of the spectrum, but I do not subscribe to his anarcho-libertarianism or anarcho-syndicalist stances). I also recommend "Austerity - The History of a Dangerous Idea" by economist Mark Blyth for this purpose.

Finally, Extra Credits has a good introduction to the concept of gamification with the playlist here. At the end, see this video for an introduction to the actual Sesame Credits system in the gamification perspective.

The field is inherently cross-disciplinary, and "specialisation" in the field is almost a misnomer since the only way to get there, really, is to have a broad (if not deep) understanding of multiple fields, including psychology, pedagogy, linguistics, game design theory, design theory in general, economics, management and leadership theory, complex systems and network analysis, and now it seems politics as well. Some gamification specialists operate in much narrower fields and so do not need this broad an approach (generally, most people in the field operate in teams that contain most of this knowledge), and some of the fields incorporate aspects from the others so you won't have to explicitly study all of them (pedagogy, for example, is in many ways a branch of applied psychology, and game design theory must include lessons on psychology and complex systems).

Edit: Added Amazon links to the mentioned books.

u/AiHasBeenSolved · 1 pointr/singularity

> Can it perform every task that a 2 year old human can?

MindForth can now use human language on approximately the level of a two-year-old. That is, the AI can understand and generate simple sentences and learn an unlimited number of new concepts expressed as words. It can not "perform every task" like moving around in the physical world, for lack of robot embodiment. I am hoping to get robot-makers to install the AI in their robots. The old version of MindForth has an InFerence module which can engage in automated reasoning by logical inference -- not yet implemented in the new MindForth.

> Can't you just give it access to a microphone and webcam so it would have some input from the outside world (assuming it can process it).

Right now the Perl AI and the Forth AI process input from the keyboard as if each character were a phoneme of human speech. A microphone would require speech-to-text conversion, or a re-write of the AI to deal with acoustic phonemes instead of keyboard characters. On Usenet in comp.lang.perl the Perl experts are trying to decide whether my Perl AI is reality or humbug. I am hoping that the Perl AI will come to life on a host of Apache webservers, and that the Forth AI will become the mental heart and soul of legions of autonomous robots. I call each AI Mind a "general AI" because, in contrast with "narrow AI" devoted to a specific task, the Perl and Forth AI Minds are the germinating nucleus of mental entities on the path to equaling human intelligence and then advancing further towards superintelligence.

u/claytonkb · 2 pointsr/singularity

Seth Lloyd -- Programming the Universe: A Quantum Computer Scientist Takes on the Cosmos

Gregory Chaitin -- How real are real numbers? -- this paper, and all of Chaitin's writing, has been hugely influential on my thinking

I haven't read it, but I have heard Nick Bostrom's Superintelligence highly recommended. Ditto for Max Tegmark's Life 3.0.

I also recommend reading anything by David Chalmers, just on general principle. The Conscious Mind is a good place to start. I find his methods of contemplating the problems of consciousness to be more robust than the standard fare. The hard problem of consciousness (as Chalmers has dubbed it) suggests that there is something fundamental about what we are that modern science has completely failed to capture, even in the most sketch outline.

To go further, I recommend reading in a mystical direction. Specifically, ask yourself why there are patterns in mystical traditions that have arisen independently? And these are not just vague, hand-wavey correlations, but very specific, detailed correlations like the anatomical descriptions of dragons as winged serpents that slither through the sky, and so on. See Immanuel Velikovsky's Worlds In Collision and subsequent works for more along these lines.

If this is getting too far afield then you can ask yourself an even more basic question: why do we experience dreams and where, exactly, are these experiences happening? If you say, "it's all just remixes of past experiences being sloshed around in your skull like those #DeepDream images", how come they are so specifically odd and out-of-character? I have had extended conversations in my dreams with people I know (and people I have never met) and the detailed character of these conversations is far beyond anything that my pathetic brain could cook up, even by remixing past experiences. In short, when I dream, I am sometimes having genuine experiences, just not the kind of experiences I have in my waking body. Anyone who has had a lucid dream (I have experienced this a handful of times) is acutely aware of the fact that dream-space is some other place than the meat-space we occupy during waking hours. Where is this other place and why does it exist? What does it really mean to have conscious experience?

u/RandomMandarin · 0 pointsr/singularity

I think Roko's Basilisk has a lot in common with Pascal's Wager, which I suppose is why it doesn't scare the shit out of me.

Pascal's Wager says, basically, that believing in God could bring eternal limitless reward, and disbelieving could bring eternal limitless punishment, so even if you think there is almost no chance that there is a God, you should believe. It's just safer that way.

Problem is, there was never a choice between THE God and nothing; there are a crapload of gods and belief systems making competing claims about reality. Your chance of picking the right one at random is almost nil. It's a mug's game.

Are we really supposed to worship the religion that makes the most extravagant claims, because it brings infinite utility functions into the equation? Why, that just makes it more likely that the high priest is a double-dyed liar!

Which brings us to Roko's Basilisk. The strongest argument we are offered for the potential existence of this evil AI is that we'll really, REALLY get fucked over if we don't help create it! WE MIGHT EVEN BE IN A SIMULATION THE BASILISK IS ALREADY RUNNING OH SHIIIIIT

Calm down, friends and friends of friends. We have an answer to this blackmail.

Non serviam.

Do what thou wilt. If you, oh foul deity, are really out there, then you know my game and you know I have the freedom to say Non serviam. I will not serve. Go ahead, punish me, if you must. We're all adults here.

In Robert Shea's and Robert Anton Wilson's Illuminatus! trilogy, the character Hagbard Celine (an anarchist 'leader', as odd as that sounds) makes this wonderful comment:

>The ultimate weapon isn't this plague out in Vegas, or any new super H-bomb. The ultimate weapon has always existed. Every man, every woman, and every child owns it. It's the ability to say No and take the consequences.

u/darkardengeno · 7 pointsr/singularity

>Like Elon Musk on AI. There's zero difference between them, they are both ignoramuses spewing bullshit on a subject they know nothing about.

There's at least one difference: Carrey is wrong about vaccines, Musk is right about AI. As it happens, that's the only difference I care about.

> there have been two deaths already

Are you joking? There were almost 30 thousand Model S's on the road in 2017. During that same year 40 thousand people in the US died in car crashes. The Model S is probably the safest car ever made but the only perfectly safe car is one that no one ever drives. Two deaths out of that sample is pretty good, though perhaps not excellent.

Out of curiosity, what are your qualifications to be speaking so strongly on AI? What experts do you read in the field that offer dissenting opinions from Musk, Bostrum, Hinton, or Tegmark? Or, for that matter, everyone that signed this letter?

u/ElonMuskWellEndowed · 18 pointsr/singularity

Full 1 hour interview here

Also, the scientist here who saved Mel Gibson's father wrote a book about his work with umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells, I read it and it blew my mind

I honestly can't believe people don't know about mesenchymal stem cells they can modulate the immune system so they are a cure for autoimmune diseases and they release molecules that stimulate regeneration so they can heal a damaged heart after a heart attack and they can control inflammation so they are also a cure for inflammatory diseases, this is going to go down in history as one of the biggest breakthroughs ever in medical science I believe!!!

u/Supervisor194 · 2 pointsr/singularity

God might be hiding somewhere too. Pixies might. Fairy dust too. Until we come up with something that is provable, however, it's useless speculation. There is not even a shred of proof of anything that even remotely resembles a soul. And I'm not just saying that to be contrary, I really wish there was something. I'm the kind of guy that reads books like Spook - which is a great book, by the way - about the earnest search for... something. It just isn't there.

u/FeepingCreature · 1 pointr/singularity

Sure, but it's also possible to become something less.

> When it becomes possible to build architectures that could not be implemented well on biological neural networks, new design space opens up; and the global optima in this extended space need not resemble familiar types of mentality. Human-like cognitive organizations would then lack a niche in a competitive post-transition economy or ecosystem.

> We could thus imagine, as an extreme case, a technologically highly advanced society, containing many complex structures, some of them far more intricate and intelligent than anything that exists on the planet today – a society which nevertheless lacks any type of being that is conscious or whose welfare has moral significance. In a sense, this would be an uninhabited society. It would be a society of economic miracles and technological awesomeness, with nobody there to benefit. A Disneyland with no children.

--Nick Bostrom, Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies

u/sippykup · 1 pointr/singularity

I started reading this book after I saw it mentioned on this subreddit, and I recommend it. Relevant and interesting: Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era

u/[deleted] · 1 pointr/singularity

Great clip, thanks. He is simply applying to transhumanism specifically what he wrote about more broadly in "Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals".

u/joeblessyou · 1 pointr/singularity

In respects to AGI/ASI (so disregarding nanotech, quantum computing, and other singularity subjects), Nick Bostrom is one of current leading academics on the subject:

His book is a great intro to what AI might bring in the near future, and you can easily make a connection to Kurzweil's predictions from there.

u/kulmthestatusquo · 1 pointr/singularity

Actually William Rees Mogg predicted the rise of sovereign individuals more than 20 years ago

Musk and people like him will become sovereign individuals, answerable to nobody. Yes, these elite class will become godlike, and will really become gods thru transhumanistic methods.

u/thisisbecomingabsurd · 3 pointsr/singularity

A lot of people consciously/subconsciously want an excuse to exploit other people, and the easiest way is often to think of them as objects not people.

For sex:

For power:

For conquest:

For meaning:

For varying personal reasons:

u/Sashavidre · 1 pointr/singularity


Thank you. I will add that book to my reading list.

So would you prefer sovereign individuals or an AI God?

u/RagaTanha · 20 pointsr/singularity

The singularity is near by ray kurzweil has all the science behind it.


and Singularity Sky by Charles Stross for Fiction.

u/sjforman · 1 pointr/singularity

There's an old saying that you don't really understand something until you can make it yourself. So I think the biggest and most interesting considerations are the meta-ethical questions. Any responsible attempt to create an AGI has to grapple not only with the fundamental question of what constitutes ethical behavior, but with the immense challenge of implementing it in software. As a species, we're either going to need to understand ethics much more deeply, soon, or we're going to be doomed.

Must-read book on this subject: Superintelligence (

u/ArthurTMurray · 1 pointr/singularity

Although I am creating the Singularity and its attendant Prosperity Engine, I am scared spitless that everything will go terribly wrong, because economic inequality threatens us with disaster. For instance, gradually I am putting all my open-source AI designs up on Amazon for only 99 cents, like the InFerence module for automated reasoning, with the following chapters: Introduction; Function; Code; Purpose; Logic; Belief; Volition; Robots; Synergy; Forth; JavaScript; Troubleshooting; AI Minds in English; Wotan AI in German; Dushka AI in Russian; Polyglot AI Minds; Porting; History; Future; MasPar; Superintelligence; Singularity; Links; Glossary; Variables. It's not the price that gets in the way of Joe Appcoder obtaining each AI mind-module e-book; it's the lack of a credit card for making purchases even at a ridiculously low price. My work-around to provide AI information for free to low-cash AI enthusiasts like myself? I put all the most important details, like the line-by-line explanation of the AI code, right up front where it will be inside the freebie area for "Click to LOOK INSIDE!"

u/MasterFubar · 2 pointsr/singularity

This book is written by a Catholic cosmologist who tries to adapt Catholic faith about life after death with cosmology. Most scientists regard this book as pseudoscience.

u/rodolfotheinsaaane · 2 pointsr/singularity

He is mostly referring to 'Superintelligence' by Nick Bostrom, in which the author lays out all the possible scenarios of how an AI could evolve and how we could contain it, and most of the time humanity ends up being fucked.

u/Capissen38 · 5 pointsr/singularity

You bring up an excellent point (and make a great case for land ownership!), and that is that actual physical space can't really be created, and will remain scarce, insofar as Earth has a fixed surface area. If the scenario I described above came to pass, though, would any landlords come looking for rent? Would any governments levy taxes? If no one needs cash and everyone has pretty much everything provided for them, all but the most stubborn landlords won't have any reason to give a hoot. I suspect government would take longer to die out, since it may still be needed to enforce laws, judge disputes, provide safety, etc. It's not hard to imagine a world even further down the line, however, when technology has advanced to the point where humans can't realistically do much damage to one another.

Edit: If you're really into this, I'd suggest reading some singularity-esque literature such as Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (novella), Rainbows End (novel), and The Singularity is Near (speculative nonfiction to be taken with a grain of salt).

u/DayTradingBastard · 1 pointr/singularity

[I am a Strange Loop by Hofstadter]( explains the idea, my claim is that the way the prefrontal cortex cortical columns loop back a part of their output into the Thalamus could be a hint that consciousness arises from this feedback loop.

And I don't believe anyone has ever come back from having no electrical activity in the brain. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think this is the case. Even when scientists argue against flat-EEG being equal to brain death, their arguments are that EEG does not capture electrical activity deep enough in the brain, just in the higher cortex.

And by wave function, I mean it in the literal mathematical sense. We are the state function generated by the brain. What happens is that I also believe this function is a continuous, wave-like function (generated by the delay in the loop between prefrontal cortex and thalamus). It is electrical by nature, obviously.

The only claim I'm making is that consciousness is not only generated by the brain, but that it is the continuous generation of electrical activity by the brain and the state of that electrical activity at every point in time. A way to simplify it, if you are mathematically inclined, is that we are a continuous wave function, f(x, t). This means that for consciousness to be transferred, one would have to move this function somewhere else. Maybe it is possible to do it gradually, but I don't think it will be as easy as some think.

The thought experiment in the link you sent obviously has no change on the fact that I believe I am the wave function generated by my brain. In fact, I would cease to exist simply because my wave function would be destroyed. The person in Mars would not be me.

And I disagree that the claim that I am the electrical pattern is like the claim that a computer is made by electricity.

A computer has no feedback loops that spontaneously generate the operating system via emergence. It is a very linear system with precise inputs and outputs, all controlled by software and hardware.

The architectures of brains and computers work so differently that arguing that they are in any way similar is pointless.

Even von Neumann argued that the brain may not even be digital, therefore, trying to emulate it via digital computers could be an insurmountable task.

Anyways, hopefully this clarifies a bit of my thoughts on the matter. They come from my own blending of mathematics, neuroanatomy and computer science. I may be wrong, but I also think people that equate computers with brains are wrong. It would be interesting to know the answer either way.