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Ira
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: shawnhar]
      #5822766 - 04/25/13 06:37 PM

I'm not sure we could ever tell for real if a machine is self-aware. It might be lying.

/Ira


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Pess
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Reged: 09/12/07

Loc: Toledo, Ohio
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Ira]
      #5824313 - 04/26/13 12:35 PM

Quote:

I'm not sure we could ever tell for real if a machine is self-aware. It might be lying.

/Ira




Interesting comment.

What is 'self-aware'?

Is a sperm self-aware or is it just a biological machine following linear per-programmed commands?

Is an embryo self aware?

At what point does an embryo stop from being an inert genetic program being executed in a linear fashion and the collection of cells become self-aware?

This is not an easy question to answer (and easily swerves down ethical and morality highways).

One thing is certain, once a synthetic brain is developed and capable of contemplating its own existence, additionally programming can be downloaded at the speed of light to each self-aware unit so that the 'collective' is essentially one large shared distributed computing network.

Pesse (Sort of like Sybil on steroids....) Mist


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Otto Piechowski
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Reged: 09/20/05

Loc: Lexington, KY
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Pess]
      #5824966 - 04/26/13 05:40 PM

There was something in our local newspaper, which I believe was taken from somewhere like the NYtimes or AP reporting some creative and clever psychological test/observation which pinpointed self awareness in humans to as early as, I think it was, 5 months of age. I only mention this because someone (psychologists) believe they have a way to identify self awareness.

The other, unrelated thought which jumped to mind is this; I believe someone here asked the question of whether or not we would be able to tell if the machines were aware. Not so long ago, someone pointed out, concerning smart programs used by telemarketers/phone consultant companies etc, that the question had moved, in terms of talking with a machine on a phone, the question had moved from "can machines develop the awareness, person, communication skills needed to hold a conversation" to "can programing be developed to the point where humans could no longer determine if what they were speaking with was a machine or a person".


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Rick Woods
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Reged: 01/27/05

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Otto Piechowski]
      #5825653 - 04/27/13 03:27 AM

Programming can already be written that's that sophisticated. It's just a matter of how much effort you want to put into it. (Don't look for it from Microsoft!) But that's a far cry from "self-aware" machines. I think those types of scenarios are imagined by people who have never programmed computers, and don't understand the limitations involved. GIGO: A computer is not aware of anything; it processes input and outputs results in the specified format. If you give it the wrong instructions, you'll get the wrong result. Ask anyone who's written a multi-thousand line BAL program, and been stymied by an error that ended up being caused by a Load instruction when a Load Halfword instruction was what they wanted. The machine doesn't know the difference, it just does what it's told.

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Otto Piechowski
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Reged: 09/20/05

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5825969 - 04/27/13 10:06 AM

I can't imagine what it is like to write code. I hear in Jurassic Park, Dennis Nedry (sp?) talking about writing a million lines of code and that is just beyond me. Yes, back in the mid 1970's I wrote a few programs in Fortran (does that count as code?); each only a few dozen, at most a few hundreds of lines long. Even with that the frustrations of making mistakes which caused the program not to run, and then having to go back through it line by line to find the error was such a pain.

Can't imagine the amazing things computer programmers/you do.

Otto


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llanitedave
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Reged: 09/26/05

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Otto Piechowski]
      #5826193 - 04/27/13 12:20 PM

I've written a few programs that are a few thousand lines of code each. Each one took me the better part of a year. Most of that time wasn't spent coding, most was spent troubleshooting and debugging, or sitting and thinking about what to do next, or going onto programmers forums asking what must have seemed like ridiculous questions of the more talented hackers. That constitutes a limited number of hours per week, of course.

The Linux kernel in 2012, 11 years after work began on it, had about 15 million lines of code. About 680 people over that time have contributed more than 100 modifications each (and thousands more have contributed a few here and there). That's also close to the number of people that are actively working on it at any one time. Crudely averaging that out, it's a little more than 2000 lines of code per contributor per year. Not particularly onerous for those who know what they're doing.

But as Rick pointed out, no amount of code can make a machine self-aware. However, that doesn't mean a machine can't be self-aware in principle, it just requires more than just a computer. Self-awareness, like so many other phenomena, is almost certainly something emergent, requiring not only vast amounts of information-processing ability, but a high sensitivity to the external environment and the ability to dynamically model that environment, and one's own interaction with it, in real time. A robot can potentially do that, but it's certainly not there yet.

Could we tell if we were confronted by a self-aware machine? I think we could be easily fooled either way, but again, I think it's possible.


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Pess
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Reged: 09/12/07

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: llanitedave]
      #5826387 - 04/27/13 01:53 PM

Quote:

But as Rick pointed out, no amount of code can make a machine self-aware. However, that doesn't mean a machine can't be self-aware in principle, it just requires more than just a computer. Self-awareness, like so many other phenomena, is almost certainly something emergent, requiring not only vast amounts of information-processing ability, but a high sensitivity to the external environment and the ability to dynamically model that environment, and one's own interaction with it, in real time. A robot can potentially do that, but it's certainly not there yet.

Could we tell if we were confronted by a self-aware machine? I think we could be easily fooled either way, but again, I think it's possible.




You make an insightful point here, a self-aware entity has to be able to sense and interact with its environment. This action-feeddback-amended action is critical.

A self aware computer would almost certainly be capable of modifying its own 'code' on the fly just as humans can.

Humans do this by parallel processing. Different branches of logic are reinforced with desirable behavior while logic branches are discarded and wither away. This is basically how we learn to walk (or any skill). Balance pathways that are efficient are reinforced with use while those that don't lead to the desired result (ie: make us fall) are left unreinforced and decay.

But at birth all pathways are pretty much equal.

People recover from disabling strokes much the same way. Old tried and true circuits for walking no longer work and so 'new' circuits are tried as work-arounds and many initially lost motor skills can be regaine dover time as new circuits are reinforced.

For computers now that have limited interaction with their environment, the hierarchy of 'goals' is hard wired. We also wee this in the insect world. Cockroaches have a very basic IF-THEN-ELSE program apparently running in them. As self-awareness emerges we'll see more IF-THEN-ELSE-OR MAYBE logic trees develop.

A sobering note is that self-awareness is more than biological since the vast majority of our constituent molecules change over time as we grow and develop yet our perception of ourselves does not.

Pesse (I wonder if a silicon prejudice would develop between AC & DC powered self aware computers?) Mist


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shawnhar
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Pess]
      #5826690 - 04/27/13 04:33 PM

I don't think I want the uncertatiny logic programmed into my computer...."I'm not sure I can do that that Dave"

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buddyjesus
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Reged: 07/07/10

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: shawnhar]
      #5826709 - 04/27/13 04:41 PM

considering an xbox has the computing power to use a camera to see if your moving correctly for a dancing game, it is only a matter of time until someone has a mirror in front of it. I happen to think that a crude model of self awareness wouldn't be too difficult. Actually been done. http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2012/09/25/first-self-aware-robot-created/

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Ira
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: buddyjesus]
      #5826993 - 04/27/13 06:56 PM

Is a dog self-aware? A turtle? A fish? An earthworm? A Gorilla?

/Ira


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llanitedave
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Ira]
      #5827149 - 04/27/13 07:32 PM

Gorillas and chimpanzees show some signs of self-awareness. Not sure about orangatans. I also don't know if we really have the capability to test for it in dolphins.

As for dogs, there seems to be a lot of dispute about it. It depends, I guess on where you put a boundary to the definition of self-awareness. By some definitions, there are plenty of humans who wouldn't qualify.


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Rick Woods
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: llanitedave]
      #5827250 - 04/27/13 08:14 PM

Cats are aware of little else!

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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5827305 - 04/27/13 08:43 PM

What is the test for self-awareness?

It is interesting to note that the Turing Test for an intelligent machine does not explicitly include the condition of self-awareness. It is based on actions, not subjective states. A machine that acts indistinguishably from a human being is not self aware, it just says the right things to seem self-aware.

So, how do we test for self-awareness?

Is "consciousness" a pre-requisite for being self-aware? It would seem to be. Animals of various kinds are certainly conscious, but few seem to be self-aware. Since I don't think anyone would declare even Deep Blue to be conscious, machines still have a long way to go before being self-aware.

Perhaps there is something to dualism after all. Where is "the ghost in the machine"?

/Ira


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Jason H.
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Reged: 11/23/07

Loc: Central Florida
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: llanitedave]
      #5827494 - 04/27/13 11:25 PM

Quote:

Gorillas and chimpanzees show some signs of self-awareness. Not sure about orangatans. I also don't know if we really have the capability to test for it in dolphins.

...




Paper - Mirror self-recognition in the bottlenose dolphin: A case of cognitive convergence

http://www.pnas.org/content/98/10/5937.full.pdf

and according to this article regarding the same dolphin paper, at

http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/story?id=131068&page=1#.UXyUPsokR8E

"...Only chimpanzees, orangutans and gorillas passed the test by examining the marks on their bodies."

So perhaps (lacking a citation) orangutans (that you were wondering about) are in the mix too?

Regards, Jason H.


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llanitedave
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Jason H.]
      #5827514 - 04/27/13 11:33 PM

That's very cool, Jason. I wasn't sure that mirror recognition would even be a fair test for dolphins, since so much of their sensory world is auditory. But they got it anyway. Just shows how smart they really are.

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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: llanitedave]
      #5827745 - 04/28/13 04:29 AM

Perhaps "They" will be wearing spacesuits filled with water instead of some exotic atmosphere!

/Ira


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Pess
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Reged: 09/12/07

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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Ira]
      #5829984 - 04/29/13 11:44 AM

Just saw 'Oblivion' with Tom Cruise.

Interesting concept. Why take, feed & transport an entire army to conquer another planet? Just find a few good specimens, clone them in quantity and program them to fight their brethren on the planet.

They would already be adapted to conditions & equipment for the conquest world.

Hmm, food for thought....

Pesse (Filed in my world domination folder....) Mist


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Pess
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Ira]
      #5830160 - 04/29/13 01:08 PM

Quote:

Perhaps "They" will be wearing spacesuits filled with water instead of some exotic atmosphere!

/Ira





I thought that was the definition of Human Skin?

I also believe in the inviolable fact of free will...

Pesse (..they made me say that.) Mist


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Ira
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: Why "They" are not here yet new [Re: Pess]
      #5831083 - 04/29/13 08:47 PM

Are you an "Extremophile"?

http://www.universetoday.com/101849/book-review-weird-life-the-search-for-lif...

/Ira


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llanitedave
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Re: Why "They" are not here yet [Re: Ira]
      #5831359 - 04/29/13 11:38 PM

I'm an extremophobe, personally.

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