On Saturday, September 22, 2012 9:10:30 AM UTC-4, Bruno Marchal wrote: > > > On 21 Sep 2012, at 22:48, Craig Weinberg wrote: > > Post from my blog: > > Simple as that, really. From psychological discoveries of the subconscious > and unconscious, to cognitive bias and logical fallacies, to > quasi-religious faith in artificial intelligence, we seem to have a mental > blind spot for emotional realities. > > What could be more human than making emotional mistakes or having one’s > judgment cloud over because of favoritism or prejudice? Yet when it comes > to assessing the feasibility of a sentient being composed of programmed > functions, we tend to miss entirely this little detail: Personal > preference. Opinion. Bias. It doesn’t bother us that machines completely > lack this dimension and in all cases exhibit nothing but impersonal > computation. This tends to lead the feel-blind intellect to unknowingly > bond to the computer. The consistency of an automaton’s function is > comforting to our cognitive self, who longs to be free of emotional bias, > so much so that it is able to hide that longing from itself and project the > clean lines of perfect consequences outward onto a program. > > It’s not that machines aren’t biased too - of course they are incredibly > biased toward the most literal interpretations possible, but they are all > biased in the same exact way so that is seems to us a decent tradeoff. The > rootless consciousness of the prefrontal cortex thinks that is a small > price to pay, and one which will inevitably be mitigated with improvements > in technology. In its crossword puzzle universe of Boolean games, something > like a lack of personhood or feeling is a minor glitch, an aesthetic ‘to be > continued’ which need only be set aside for now while the more important > problems of function can be solved. > > It seems that the ocean of feelings and dreams which were tapped into by > Freud, Jung, and others in the 20th century have been entirely dismissed in > favor of a more instrumental approach. Simulation of behaviors. Turing > machine emulation. This approach has the fatal flaw of drawing the mind > upside down, with intellect and logic at the base that builds up to complex > mimicry of mood and inflection. The mind has an ego and doesn’t know it. > Thinking has promoted itself to a cause of feeling and experience rather > than a highly specialized and esoteric elaboration of personhood. > > We can see this of course in developmental psychology and anthropology. > Babies don’t come out of the womb with a flashing cursor, ready to accept > programming passively. Primitive societies don’t begin with impersonal > state bureaucracies and progress to chiefdoms. We seem to have to learn > this lesson again and again that our humanity is not a product of strategy > and programming, but of authenticity and direct participation. > > When people talk about building advanced robots and computers which will > be indistinguishable from or far surpass human beings, they always seem to > project a human agenda on them. We define intelligence outside of ourselves > as that which serves a function to us, not to the being itself. This again > suggests to me the reflective quality of the mind, of being blinded by the > reflection of our own eyes in our sunglasses. Thoughts have a hard time > assessing the feeling behind themselves, and an even harder time admitting > that it matters. > > I think we see this more and more in all areas of our lives - an > overconfidence in theoretical approaches and a continuous disconnecting > with the results. We keep hoping that it will work this time, even though > we probably know that it never will. It’s as if our collective psyche is > waiting for our deluded minds to catch up. Waiting for us to figure out > that in spite of the graphs and tests and retooling, the machine is really > not working any better. > > > You are right. We have very often dismissed emotion, feelings and > consciousness in human. > > Unfortunately, dismissing emotion feelings and consciousness in machine, > will not help. > > Bruno > > You don't see a connection between the two? There is no chance of machine feelings being a psychological projection?