Monday, May 25, 2015

Oh woe is us! Those horrible horrible AIs are out to get us

These days some Very Smart, Very Rich, and Very Intellectual people are worried that the computers will do us in the first chance they get. Nonsense!

We would do well to recall that Nick Bostrom is one of these thinkers. He first gained renown from his fiendishly constructed "we are The Matrix argument", in which he went from
1) super-intelligent AI and mega-ginormous capacity computers are inevitable


2) the people who create them will likely devote a lot of time to Whole-World simulations of their past


3) more likely than not, we're just simulated creatures having simulated life in one of these simulations.
From that it follows that the existential dangers posed by advanced AI are only simulated dangers posed by simulated advanced AI. Why should we worry about that? After all, we're not even real. We're just simulations.

The REAL problem is that so many people seem to think this is real thought, even profound thought, rather than superstitious twaddle. We look back at medieval theologians who worried about how many angels could dance on the head of a pin and think, "How silly." Yes, it's silly, but it seemed real enough to advanced thinkers at the time. These fears of superintelligent evil computers are just as silly. Get over it.

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