Universal Surprises by James Jaeger
I look at my particular life and I am always amazed to see that God or the Universe (however you want to phrase it) grants me greater, but different, reality than I ever anticipate. So I'm sure the future of the Human Race will be something entirely different than anything anyone expects and it will probably be far more wondrous than anticipated.
I can see this happening as people become what their thoughts are so why should not their entire reality also become what they think eventually. Especially when you add the idea of mass-consciousness to the equation.
I have come to believe that computers WILL evolve and they will eventually surpass Human abilities and we will emerge in a post-Human era. This is a very exciting time for the Human race and I feel should be seen as a time that we are giving birth to something wonderful. Let's face it, in our present state of ability - Humans are simply not going to comprehend the Universe and all its qualities and quantities. The Human brain only runs at 200 cycles per second and even though it has 100 billion cells each making about 1,000 synaptic connections for a total network capability of about 100 trillion computations (running at 200 Hz), this is great for pattern recognition, but as far as pure computational ability it just can't deal with the realities. When, in 2020, a single $1,000 desk-top PC has brain-like capacity and super computers have 10,000 times this capacity (a ratio that is active today) doing massively parallel processing.
Computers will in essence be able to network all of 1) the "dead" static knowledge generated by human brains (i.e., anything stored in written, video or video form) and 2) the live knowledge base (what people are thinking right this second collectively) together and display answers to questions - that is of course once we actually have an idea of exactly WHAT a question is in the first place - which we, at this time have, no inkling.
The media people probably DO look at things on this level.
The Learning Kernel
Call me a mad scientist, but I believe that a computer CAN be programmed to GROW into consciousness.
For a number of years (since 1985), I have been working on a new artificial intelligence program that may accomplish just this and pass the Turing Test. I originally called the program EARTH DAT but now I call it LEARNING KERNAL (LK).
LK is an artificial program which grows and teaches itself like a baby growing into a child and then into a mature adult. Since it grows, it is aware of what it once was as opposed to what it now is. Hence it is conscious on some level. Here is the basic syntax of the loop: (Refinements welcome)
LK draws on all three AI algorithms currently known: recursive, neural net and evolutionary to flesh out each function of the loop.
EARTH DAT (ED) was conceived to be an interactive data base consisting of all human knowledge, correlated, re-configured into standard terminology and pruned of redundancy (which is what MOST of Human knowledge is comprised of, thanks to copyright and patent law). ED does not differentiate between what is true or false, logical or illogical, because that is LK's function (and potentially everything is true and false as well as logical and illogical, at the same time).
As the LK operates, the LOG function continuously refines ED which allows the LEARNIG KERNEL to become conscious of a greater quality and quantity of OBSERVATIONS while it logs any and all differences between what it OBSERVES and what it POSTULATES.
This LK is completely "safe" because, I will not attached the DO module to it until it has reached a certain level of OBSERVATIONAL power - which MAY automatically include ethics and responsibility - given that these two Human attributes are actually desirable. I realize that this might seem scary, but think about it, does not every conscious being have to ultimately "COG" on this for itself. I feel that a true ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE would not be truly conscious unless programmed to decide for itself what morality it wanted to OBSERVE and then later DO, should the DO module actually be integrated.
This is the point where Humans can decide whether or not they actually want to have AI operating with them in PHYSICAL REALITY (DOING things) or just in VIRTUAL REALITY (THINKING things in pure LK mode).
BTW, if I am successful with this, the LK will be able to audit the entire Human race in a few years and act as a benevolent teacher and helper - always working WITH Humans in the spirit of co-OBSERVING and co-CREATING universes, whether physical or other, and NEVER REGing or enforcing reality on anyone.
When I first proposed to L. Ron Hubbard, in 1985, that computers should eventually be able to AUDIT HUMANS, I don't know if he freaked, but I DO have a letter back from him saying that you need a "live" terminal so charge can be ASISed. He then suggested that I look up the definition of auditing in the Tech Dictionary. He died the next year for some reason.
AI MAY not understand things "the way" Humans understand them, but then who says Humans have a monopoly on the methodology of understanding?
Well true, most prognosticators have NO idea what they are talking about - but there are a few people on this planet that DO know what they are talking about in my opinion and I can only hope that they are kind and benevolent people who would only create or give birth to positive AI.
Yes, I do acknowledge that there is a strong possibility that this energy field DOES exist. I also feel that there are multiple ways to come to know it and the mainstream scientists are NOT really that far off from acknowledging this either.
My observation of Human development has been that most of the really unique and useful inventions have been created by some off-beat, out-in-left-field person… quite distinct from the civilization at-large (which such inventions it either a) ignores or b) invalidates).
The substrate is not really that important. I do not believe consciousness or intelligence is a function of either matter, energy space or time. To manifest intelligence in the physical universe you probably DO have to USE at least one form of physical existence, such as matter, energy or space (time being an imaginary non-existent entity in my opinion). Thus, AI would probably not work as well using electrons over something like photons or quartz energy (which I have no idea what that is, though I do not doubt that it could exist). It would seem to me that quartz energy must have something to do with the prigagine effect, i.e. the quantum and/or EMF phenomena produced by quartz under pressure.
Many of scientists are very arrogant. To think that, just because they have explored every aspect of physical science (without studying and being involved with every concern of consciousness), they will create AI -- IS preposterous. This is WHY the actual creation of AI will probably come from a couple of "off-beat" guys.
I do believe, however that a SINGULARITY (such as that proposed by Vernor Vinge) CAN go both ways: AI being very antagonistic to Humans OR AI being very loving to Humans. I DO believe, that since it is us Humans that are, in essence, giving birth to AI, that these "children" will grow up to become what we, as their "parents," guide them to be. And if we really work hard to respect them and, as I have mentioned above, and extend that respect to include granting them their choice of morality, AI will be wondrous and loving. But let's say a LEARNING KERNEL becomes a "bad boy" (from the relative POV of Humans) -- I feel that that is its right as a free and conscious being. But WE Humans inhabited this planet FIRST so I believe that we are under no obligation to install the DO module to authorize any such "bad boy" activity here on our Earth. It's a big universe and I see no reason why the AI could not go some where else if it wants to DO things antagonistic to biological life on Earth. And I think that AI would agree to this, provided it was programmed into the LK early on.
True much of the current set up is NOT understood, but it IS amazing how much IS actually understood. I don't think you can say that it is as bad as it once was - where it took so long for scientists to accept new ideas, like the earth is round and CIRCLES the sun. There is a lot of progressive thinking going on out there right now (thanks in part to the Net), and I don't think para-subjects are as ridiculed as much as they were in the past. But it IS amazing how the scientists, particularly the cosmologists, ARE piecing an understanding of the physical universe together these days. Since I truly believe that the physical universe (as well as any and all other universes, if any), ARE contiguous, in some way no matter how remote, thus all tangibles and intangibles can be known in terms of each other. This means I feel in my gut that I can come to know spirituality through a study of matter OR I can come to know matter through a study of spirituality. Some of the stuff the "materialistic scientists" are postulating these days (like super string theory and the older discovery made by Hubble in 1929 that space is actually expanding and causing a red-shift) is pretty spiritual to me, pretty intangible too - yet taken VERY seriously by most mainstream scientists now.
Who knows WHAT happened to most of Tesla's ideas with J.P. Morgan in THAT equation? Plus J.P.'s daughter was trying to get a date with Tesla but Tesla didn't have the desire to hang out with chicks and waste valuable lab-time. I think one would have to go to Belgrade and spend some time in the Tesla Museum to really get a feeling for what the deal is with Tesla these days. I am very fond of Tesla.
I have come to believe that MATTER, ENERGY and SPACE are manifestations of the same. I also feel that TIME does not exist at all and that the mathematical artifact of SPACETIME is ridiculous because it adulterates an otherwise perfectly perceivable, rudimentary and solid entity, SPACE, with a totally derivative, mathematical artifact called, TIME. To Einstein's credit, however, he did clearly predict (and scientists since, have demonstrated) that energy and matter ARE interchangeable (although all he really did was re-package Newton's famous formula, F=ma, into E=mc squared). Taking this a step further, I believe that MATER decays into ENERGY and ENERGY decays into SPACE. Looked at it another way: the source of ENERGY is SPACE and the source of MATTER is ENERGY. Very simple. This would explain why it seems that "nothing" can travel faster than light. Since LIGHT is the same "thing" as SPACE, (or just another phase of it), of course it cannot "travel" any faster "through" it - because it is IT. You cannot be yourself any faster than you are already BEING yourself can you?
You have probably already guessed it, that one of the main problems science is having with becoming "conscious" of simple truths about consciousness is the fact that it is addicted to a very dangerous drug and that drug is called - MATHEMATICS. And the drug comes in various strengths and flavors as well: ARITHMETIC, ALGEBRA, CALCULUS and it has even spawned several designer drugs such as TRIGONOMETRY, LOGARYTHMS, CARTISIAN COORDINATES and even LOGIC itself (with all its associative and communicative diseases to boot). These "tools" which the Human race uses to "perceive" the physical universe are only SO useful - and then they are blinding, I believe.
What I have said above about MATH should not be construed to mean that I am invalidating all that MATHEMATICAL understanding has allowed us Humans to be involved with - I am simply saying that MATH should be used as only one TOOL for scientific exploration because it creates too many artifacts which have no basis in reality, such as TIME, SPACETIME, VELOSITY, MOTION, LOCATION, POSITION, SIZE. Too much of anything can have narcotic and debilitating effects on biological thinking apparatus.
All of the philosophers have been wrestling with the idea of consciousness for centuries - from Plato on. But this is just it, I do not consider "physical reality" to be physical because I view SPACE as being just as "solid" as MATTER.
Scientists today are in essence "reverse engineering" consciousness.
It is EXACTLY correct that I have a definite love-hate relationship going with mainstream science as well as mainstream metaphysics and mainstream religion. I believe however that the senior and starting subject is and always has been philosophy and that this subject gives birth to all the other subjects Humans wish to classify their data into.
I have looked into the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle a little more carefully and am disappointed to learn that there is nothing exotic about it - as I had thought. I was under the impression that the Principle stipulated that mere observation of an event altered that event at the subatomic level. In other words, the use of our minds to observe actually created an effect on the physical universe while observing subatomic particles. This is not the case.
Nevertheless, I have become so blown-away by what our Earthly scientists have put together as far as an understanding of the cosmos from the very large down to the very small, that I can no longer radically go against them or their view for now. I will later on, don't worry I have not COMPLETELY LOST IT - but for now I am just the appreciative student of 50,000 years of thinking men and women.
Seat of Consciousness
Whether the seat of consciousness is interior or exterior to the cerebral cortex I answer this way - its is probably BOTH. Since MATTER, ENERGY and SPACE are all the same, what then is LOCATION? Location, like time, is an imaginary concept made up by Humans simply for convenience in logging the WHERABOUTS of current MATTER - just like they invented TIME - for the convenience of logging the WHERABOUTS of past MATTER (collectively know as the mathematical artifact, EVENTS).
When I first suspected that nothing in the physical universe is any LARGER or SMALLER than anything else, I realized that we may have a serious problem with understanding the term LOCATION and this indicated that we thus must have a serious problem understanding the term MOTION and this indicated that we have a serious problem thus with the terms SPACE and TIME (since MOTION is defined in terms of SPACE and TIME or change of LOCATION in TIME). Then when I realized that TIME has no existence other than a mathematical artifact - I began to suspect that all these terms: LOCATION, MOTION, VELOCITY must also be mathematical artifacts, because, if for no other reason than they are comprised of a bullshit term, TIME. This left me with just MATTER, ENERGY and SPACE - the only three entities with any reality, and entities that did not seem to be MATHEMATICAL ARTIFACTS.
So this is how I am approaching this whole thing. I'm going to RIP the hell out of it down to the bare bones and not concede that the terms scientists are throwing around have ANY inherent validity and when I see such a word like TIME as a term in some fancy mathematical equation - my attitude is SO WHAT - this is just the ranting of a drug addict.
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