Jason Resch-2 wrote:
> On Tue, Aug 16, 2011 at 7:03 AM, benjayk
> <benjamin.jaku...@googlemail.com>wrote:
>> Craig Weinberg wrote:
>> >
>> > On Aug 15, 10:43 pm, Jason Resch <jasonre...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> >> I am more worried for the biologically handicapped in the future.
>> >>  Computers
>> >> will get faster, brains won't.  By 2029, it is predicted $1,000 worth
>> of
>> >> computer will buy a human brain's worth of computational power.  15
>> years
>> >> later, you can get 1,000 X the human brain's power for $1,000. 
>> Imagine:
>> >> the
>> >> simulated get to experience 1 century for each month the humans with
>> >> biological brains experience.  Who will really be alive then?
>> >
>> > Speed and power is for engines, not brains. Good ideas don't come from
>> > engines.
>> >
>> > Craig
>> >
>> I agree. It is a very narrow to think computational power is the key to
>> rich
>> experience and high intelligence. The real magic is what is done with the
>> hardware. And honestly I see no reason to believe that we somehow we
>> magically develop amazingly intelligent software.
> Neural imaging/scanning rates are also doubling every year.  The hope is
> that we can reverse engineer the brain, by scanning it and making a map
> all
> the connections between the neurons.  Then if the appropriate hardware can
> run a few brains at 1,000 or 1,000,000  times faster than the biological
> brain, we can put our best scientists or AI researchers inside and they
> can
> figure it out in a few of our months.
> http://www.kurzweilai.net/the-law-of-accelerating-returns
There are *so* many problems with that. We are naive, a bit like 7 year old
wanting to build a time machine. We know little about the brain. Who says
there is no quantum effects going on? There doesn't even have to be
substantial entaglement. Chaos theory tells us that even minuscle quantum
effects could have major impacts on the thing. ESP and telepathy suggest
that we are to some extent entangled. There are *major* problems reprodocing
this with computers.
Neural imaging and scanning cannot pick up the major information in the
brain. Not by a long stretch. It is like having a picture of a RAM and
thinking this is enough to recover the information on it.

What use are fast brains? Our brains alone are of little use. We also need a
rich environment and a body. 

You presuppose that AI researchers have the potential ability to build
superintelligent AI. Why should we suspect this more than we suspect that
gorillas can build humans? I'd like to hear arguments that make it plausible
that it is possible to engineer somthing more generally intelligent than

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Software development is
>> slow, no comparison to the exponential progress of hardware.
> As I mentioned to Craig who complained his computer takes longer to start
> up
> now than ever, the complexity of software is in many cases outpacing even
> the exponential growth in the power of computer hardware.
That may quite well be. But even if we have a software that can render a
99^99 dimensional mandelbrot this will not be of much use. The point is that
the usefulness of software is not progressing exponentially.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> I believe that it is inherently impossible to design intelligence. It can
>> just self-organize itself through becoming aware of itself.
> A few genes separate us from chimps, and all of our intelligence.
I don't think our intelligence is reducible to genes. Memes seem even more
important. And just because we can't really research it scientifically at
moment, does not mean there are no subtler things that determine our general
intelligence than genes and culture. Many subjective experiences hint at
something like a more subtle layer, call it "soul" if you will.
All of what we understand about biology may just be the tiny top of a
pyramid that is buried in the sand. 

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>   If we can
> determine which, and see what these genes do then perhaps we can
> extrapolate
> and find out how our DNA is able to make some brains better than others.
But this is not how intelligent works. You don't just extrapolate a bit and
have more intelligence. If this were the case, we would already have
superintelligence. Development / evolution of intelligence, learning and
consciousness are highly non-trivial, and non-linear.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> I am not even
>> sure anymore whether this will have to do very much to do with
>> technology.
>> Technology might have an fundamental restriction to being a tool of
>> intelligence, not the means to increase intelligence at the core (just
>> relative, superficial intelligence like intellectual knowledge).
> I think the existence of Google and Wikipedia makes me more intelligent. 
> If
> I could embed a calculator chip into my brain my mental math skills would
> improve markedly.
This is exactly the kind of intelligence I am NOT talking about. It's
useful, sure. But it doesn't lead to unimaginable creative, self-improving
intelligence. We may become super-knowledgable in the next decades, sure.
But this doesn't mean we acquire the wisdom that is necessary for deep
progress, leading to higher states of consciousness and happiness.
Whether you know extremely much or not isn't really so important that it
would divide enhanced humans from normal humans more than it divides
scientifically literate people from badly educated people.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Also, we have no reliable way of measuring the computational power of the
>> brain, not to speak of the possibly existing subtle energies that go
>> beyond
>> the brain, that may be essential to our functioning. The way that
>> computational power of the brain is estimated now relies on a quite
>> reductionstic view of what the brain is and what it does.
> As I've mentioned before on this list, neuroscientists have succeeded in
> creating biologically realistic neurons.  The CPU requirements of these
> neurons is well understood:
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LS3wMC2BpxU&t=7m30s
Biologically realistic neurons is relative. We certainly don't take quantum
effects into account, and evidence seems to suggest this is important. At
least I see no other way to explain ESP.

Even if we suppose that they are biologically realistic, neurons alone don't
make up human a functioning brain. A neuron is like a transistor of a
computer, and a transistor is not enough for a functioning computer! There
are other type of cells that may be important in information processing.
Also there are different kinds of neurons, and the way they are put together
in different units is also important. Even if we were able to reproduce all
of this, we would still need the software running on the brain.
How would we do this?
At the very least, it seems we would have to biologically realistically
simulate the development of the brain from before birth until late
childhood. And of course this needs a very good interface to the outside

So, simulating neurons seems to be the easiest task in simulating a brain.


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