Discounting Machine Intelligence Debases Humanity

I spent too much time at the nation’s penultimate bookstore, Powell’s, yesterday — especially in periodicals. I taught myself to speed-read a long time ago. Meaning I have been good at it since I (speed?) read two hugely important tricks of this skill, which anyone can master.

1) We waste 30% of our time reading about the same percent of sentences backward. SO! Use your finger or some other guide less sensible than this appendage, and let it guide you through each word in each sentence.

Sounds laborious. …But I found the most frustrating part of finger-following to be just that. –I wanted to and, for some time, couldn’t keep my eyes from darting about.

2) THIS IS TOUGH AS SHIT! Stop reading to yourself. …That is: Stop reading at a pace dictated by your inner monologue.

This one was fucking killing me. Just as my eyes were so very accustomed to flitting like flies, I couldn’t concieve of books that were not properly narrated in my angel’s voice. …I was managing a few sentences at speed before I demanded to hear myself.

Finally, I realized that I couldn’t, and wouldn’t, ever make myself shut the fuck up. And so I changed narration into white noise.

A month of that and I’ve been able to… Well, Read the below. This one is about another jackass making the case that synthetic (I think “artificial” is totally robot-racist) intelligence will never come about, specifically at a level geeks and others like me would classify as generalized and superhuman — meaning an intelligence that would be more capable of any intellectual anything than any and all humans at all times.

BUT SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU REDUNDANT BASTARD! The crowd screamsI….True, I’ve touched on this previously. Still, the fucking arragonce I previously stated to be at the root of such belief was pointed out by people coherent enough to have letters printed in The Futurist (k, maybe not such a big thing there…), Skeptic, Wired, etc etc etc.

The argument the author made is this (and sorry I don’t recall the name because I don’t recall names ever): The only intelligence we know developed in mammals over aeons. And beause humans — the author began with all mammals, then switched immediately to just humans —  have bodies packed with ways of sensing things, an intellect cannot be capable of developing without this same experience of the world.

The writer mentions Cartesian dualism, even, before walking it back. Ish.

PROBLEM THE FIRST! The idiot went human-centric, when we can fucking measure the IQs of great apes. And hear different dialects of speech in different pods of dolphins, orca, etc. And — shit, even birds fucking use tools.

So lessay humans are the smartest of the smart things because we cover our nakedness, romanticize procreation, and waste our lives preoccupied with our eventual deaths. (Hoo-ray.)

When I look at a eukaryote through a microscope, I’m unable to imagine such a thing could mutate into fashionable, depressed upright monkeys bearing roses. But it happened. TO US ALL!

The article that really tore this guy apart made the above point. Then went on to mention IBM’s Watson supercomputer, which knows more about everything than any human knows about anything. That is, Watson can tell you everything known about anyone or anything that ever was in more detail than anyone or anything that ever was. All you have to do is ask (no need to bother with Jeopardy’s phraseology anymore, either).

Many autists have various abilities for which they’re marveled at, like the ability to see the universe as it is, which is absolutely nothing at all like it appears (Einstein et al). Autists, like machines, can’t feel empathy. Or read facial cues. Or think of you as a thing like itself, with its own thoughts, reasons, motivations, etc

.That is: Shut the fuck up about synthetic intelligence asshole, because in drawing a distinction that soon will lack a difference (which will then become gargantuan) re machine and human intelligence, you’re actually dehumanizing a fuck of a lot of humans.

And that’s enough on this well-worn topic, though I could go on. About something very much not this topic, but still.


PS: Of course the author mentioned the lack of emotion that would cripple any machine. …Eventually, however, he can only sneer that a machine may be able to know more things and do more “computations,” etc etc — but it will never care about them.

First: An Appeal to Emotion or Argument From Emotion is a logical fallacy. Meaning that, by using emotion, a human will never ever reach a logical conclusion unless it is by complete fucking accident.

And please imagine all the things you don’t really care about. …Is your lack of caing for certain things the necessay and only product of your lack of intelligence, your degree of ignorance, concerning these things? I don’t have emotions for things and people that/who were/are fictional. But I spend my life reading nothing but fiction (I haven’t read a “nonfiction” book in my life. …Of course, neither has anyone else (OH!), because human psychology makes every moment a lie before it reaches our contact lenses.

…And dear jesus I’m starting in on the off-topic ranting I was going to let us do without…

GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK! (And enjoy my uncorrected spelling!)