Dr. J. chats with Mitch Horowitz, author of Occult America: The Secret History of How Mysticism Shaped Our Nation. They talk about the Freemasons, theosophy, Gandhi, Edgar Cayce, the Third Reich and the New Deal, and the eventual occultification of contemporary Christianity. MP3
Spatiotemporal reasoning is an important skill that an AGI is expected to have, innately or not. Much work has already been done in defining reasoning systems for space, time and spacetime, such as the Region Connection Calculus for space, Allen’s Interval Algebra for time, or the Qualitative Trajectory Calculus for motion. However, these reasoning systems rarely take adequate account of uncertainty, which poses an obstacle to using them in an AGI system confronted with an uncertain reality. In this paper we show how to use PLN (Probabilistic Logic Networks) to represent spatiotemporal knowledge and reasoning, via incorporating existing spatiotemporal calculi, and considering a novel extension of standard PLN truth values inspired by P(Z)-logic. This “PLN-ization” of existing spatiotemporal calculi, we suggest, constitutes an approach to spatiotemporal inference suitable for use in AGI systems that incorporate logic-based components.
When I was in undergrad, a professor asked our whole class a strange question. The question was strange because it seemed totally out of context, but I think he had a point, so I present it here as a worthy thought experiment.
Two new formal definitions of intelligence are presented, the “pragmatic general intelligence” and “efficient pragmatic general intelligence.” Largely inspired by Legg and Hutter’s formal de nition of “universal intelligence”, the goal of these de nitions is to capture a notion of general intelligence that more closely models that possessed by humans and practical AI systems, which combine an element of universality with a certain degree of specialization to particular environments and goals. Pragmatic general intelligence measures the capability of an agent to achieve goals in environments, relative to prior distributions over goal and environment space. E cient pragmatic general intelligences measures this same capability, but normalized by the amount of computational resources utilized in the course of the goal-achievement. A methodology is described for estimating these theoretical quantities based on observations of a real biological or artificial system operating in a real environment. Finally, a measure of the “degree of generality” of an intelligent system is presented, allowing a rigorous distinction between “general AI” and “narrow AI”.
A software architecture is described which enables a virtual agent in an online virtual world to carry out simple English language interactions grounded in its perceptions and actions. The use of perceptions to guide anaphor resolution is discussed, along with the use of natural language generation to answer simple questions about the observed world. This architecture has been implemented within the larger PetBrain system, which is built on the OpenCog open-source AI software framework and architected based on the OpenCogPrime design for integrative AGI, and has previously been used for nonlinguistic intelligent behaviors such as imitation and reinforcement learning.
Most Enlightenment thinkers believed in the inevitability of human political and technological progress, transforming the Christian expectation that history was predetermined to end in the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth into a conviction that humanity would be able to continually improve itself. But the scientific worldview does not support historical inevitability, only uncertainty.
Probabilistic Logic Networks (PLN), a comprehensive framework for uncertain inference currently in use in the OpenCog and Novamente Cognition Engine AGI software architectures, has previously been described in terms of the Ã‚¨experiential semantics” of an intelligent agent embodied in a world. However, several aspects of PLN are more easily interpreted and formulated in terms of Ã‚¨possible worlds semantics”; here we use a formal model of intelligent agents to show how a form of possible worlds semantics can be derived from experiential semantics, and use this to provide new interpretations of several aspects of PLN (including uncertain quanti ers, intensional inheritance, and indefinite probabilities.) These new interpretations have practical as well as conceptual bene ts, as they give a unified way of specifying parameters that in the previous interpretations of PLN were viewed as unrelated.
Sex, on its own, in the wild, natural and unadorned, is still complicated. Don’t believe me? Look at a peacock or a bird of paradise. Salmon die after they procreate. Sea slugs penis joust. Now throw in evolved human biology, history, culture, technology, and science and you have a real disaster on your hands.
While it’s common to look at transhumanist themes through the lens of science fiction, I think it’s at least as fascinating to consider the ethical issues and themes explored in controversial, well-written dramas such as Nip/Tuck.
Dr. J. chats with Jayme Canton, CEO of the Institute for Global Futures (globalfuturist.com) and author of The Extreme Future. They discuss the convergence of personalized genomic medicine with human enhancement, and the prospects for employment recovery in the global economy. MP3
If the field of futures were invented today, what would it look like? What would its intellectual foundations be? Who would it serve and influence? And how would its ideas and insights be put into practice?
The only way for us to survive is to evolve. Transhumanism - a movement supporting the use of science and technology to improve the mental and physical characteristics and capacities of humans - is the way forward, writes Natasha Vita-More.
We have been brainwashed to believe that “blood is thicker than water.” But we lack familial shared genes with spouses and best friends. In reality what is most important is shared thoughts, experiences and feelings. Affinity based upon genes is as obsolete as loyalty based upon melanin. The beme is mightier than the gene.
Adam Ford of Singularity Soup interviewed Russell Blackford in October 2009 on his book 50 Voices of Disbelief: Why We Are Atheists, atheism and secularism, indigenous spirituality, radical life extension, and technological change, including the Technological Singularity foreseen by Vernor Vinge and Ray Kurzweil.
It’s divided into six parts, accessible from here:
Dr. J. chats with Jamie Hubbard, a professor of Buddhist Studies at Smith College, and organizer of a conference on the use of neurotechnology to enhance Buddhist practice, April 10, 2010 at Smith College.
Transhumanism spans a huge swath of intellectual territory, straddling bioethics, philosophy, science fiction, engineering, and computer science. Throw in conspiracy theories and cyberpunk nihilism and you have all the ingredients for Deus Ex.