Life as an Upload

Discussion in 'Intelligence & Machines' started by Cris, Mar 29, 2001.

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  1. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

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    A new day ...

    It's really kind of neat to wake up, do the usual maintenance (toilet, breakfast, etc.) and then pick-up on an interesting thread.

    First off, I'm going to have to get a bitch off: Cris, thank you for the enlightenment re. up/down loads but did it occur to you that I may just have been sarcastic rather than unknowledgeable? I meant what I said and even emphasized it with "(uploading?)". I apogize for offending your sensibilities by suggesting that the wetware might be far more elegant than the hardware you seem to hold in such high regard.

    Next, a thanks Ripleofdeath: Though three score and seven, I too would miss greatly the physical contact with all of its sensory inputs, some of which we're only now becoming aware of.

    And finally, Boras: The sequential loading (I won't designate direction for fear of again offending) might not be such a good idea and could conceivably result in madness. Have you ever had the experience of remenissing with someone you've known for a long time and suddenly realize that the supposedly same experience .... wasn't? I wonder what it would be like to reexperience my life (the last loading) without the editing of memory that is part of aging.

    Great discussion, really enjoying.
     
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  3. BrainDrain Registered Member

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    Putting aside the idea of conciousness transfer vs. copying, let us assume for a moment that you do, indeed, wake up from this operation inside an electronic body. This opens up many possibilities that are inconceiveable in our present form. For instance, imagine that you find a person that you truly love, that also happens to have a robotic shell. It might be possible to link your minds ... to truly become one with another, whether during sexual relations or otherwise. For the first time in human history, two people could belong to eachother mind, body, and "soul" (just to use a familiar but inaccurate phrase).

    And what if the two of you wanted to reproduce? Perhaps a copy of both of your original DNA patterns would be stored somewhere within your new body, and the combination of these two could be used to create your offspring, but inside an electronic body. The development of their electronic brains could follow the path that your combined genetics would have made for it, but only more efficiently and with increased abilities. Imagine a child whose learning ability while growing up is that of a supercomputer. This child would have the distinct advantage of increased processing power from the moment of "birth". An interesting thought.

    And I could foresee a large business in "thrill-ride" uploading. Imagine a jet plane built to hold a human mind. It could be rented out to people, who could upload their mind into the plane and fly as no other human has ever been able to. Or a long-distance upload into the computer system of a spacecraft... many, many possibilities with this technology. But I am anxious to see what everyone else has to say, so I'll stop for now! ;-)
     
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  5. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    BD,

    Awright now you're beginning to see some of the 'opportunities' of this concept.

    Now consider amplified pleasure sensors - sex like you've never imagined before.

    How about plugging yourself into a virtual reality network. A real Matrix like environment.

    In fact some might consider living in a permanent VR environment rather than having robotic shells.

    Wireless communications could be built in as part of your enhencements. Imagine transmitting complex brain powered images instantly from person to person. Truly effective telepathy.

    How about teleportation - if you are not too concerned about residing in different shells from time to time then travel becomes kinda neat. Just have your digitized brain pattern transmitted to the destination and uploaded into an appropriate shell.

    I'll stop there as this might be causing you an overload.

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    Cris
     
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  7. BrainDrain Registered Member

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    Why can't I make him see?

    Well, I always understood the benefits of mind uploading, but I did not understand your take on it. From what I read in your posts, I thought you were willing to die so that a COPY of you would live on in an electronic form. I see I still haven't gotten my point across to you... does anyone else here see what I mean? Could you please help me explain? haha

    I have been reading some articles on mind uploading today, and I have learned a lot, but the idea of a non-destructive brain upload is puzzling in that, if your biological brain is still functioning, would not your sense of self still be contained there? Without a link between the two devices (brain and robobrain), how could you perceive yourself to be in two places at once? Some cosmic link? One would have to be you, and the other a great copy of you.

    One upload process that I think would possibly allow a transition of your mind from biological to artificial is the nanotech solution. Billions of nanites are injected into your brain, one for each neuron, and they record the actions of that neuron, and its links in the brain, until they can mimic them exactly. At that point, they kil the neuron and replace them. I think this gradual process would allow the biological brain to become an artificial brain.

    But if I have not yet explained my position, I believe I shall go ahead and plug my existing organic brain into a power outlet because it can not get my ideas across anyways.

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  8. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Re: Why can't I make him see?

    BD,

    ‘Sense of self’ is only a thought or emotion combination that can be mapped to specific neural pathways. If that map has been accurately replicated somewhere else, then that ‘sense of self’ thought or emotion will then exist in two places.

    After the upload there is no longer a single individual but two distinct individuals with the same brain patterns. The internal architectures of the two individuals are radically different but the external functioning is identical. It would no longer be valid to talk of one of these individuals as being you because they are both you, and there is no need for any form of link between the two individuals as they are able to function independently. Neither would it be valid to talk of one as being a copy as if that implied something inferior. It would be more accurate to consider the biological version as the foundation for the creation of a new individual.

    So either that helps to explain why your reasoning is in error or it reinforces my inability to understand what you are saying.

    Have fun
    Cris
     
  9. Rambler Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    509
    Cris

    You Wrote:

    "Sense of self’ is only a thought or emotion combination that can
    be mapped to specific neural pathways. If that map has been accurately replicated somewhere else, then that ‘sense of self’ thought or emotion will then exist in two places. "

    I agree, you sense of self will be with your bio brain and an exact copy of your sense of self will be in the "robobrain".

    So to a third party initally they would not be able to tell the difference.

    If you could explain something for me though, do you believe that if this was achieved (i.e. a complete and perfect download) and lets say your bio body was killed in the process, do you believe that you would wake up in your new container, or would you die and the copy you left behind would continue.

    A different way of saying the same thing (I hope):
    Lets say the technology is available and you are about to have it done to you. Tell me what you agree with:

    a) you enter the scanner where your brain is analysed and mapped, you die in the process, the mind upload is completed someone flicks the on switch and you wake in your new container....

    b)you enter the scanner your brain is analysed you die in the process, someone flicks the on switch and you stay dead but a NEW life form which is entirley based on your past existance takes over.

    I understand the difference is subtle and that the robobrain would probably not be aware that it is a new life form it would completely believe that it is still you other people would not be able to tell they are interacting with a copy of you HOWEVER YOU are still dead (and if there's an afterlife) only you are aware that a copy was created and infact it isn't you anymore.


    Ahh words fail to describe what I'm trying to say. Quick scan my brain (it will only take a second

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    and read what I'm trying to say.

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    now there's a practical solution.

    I just had another thought (they are rare so humour me) this technology would be great for jailing/punishment of criminals...upload to a terminal isolate it and let them spend their sentence in a Microsoft based PC, and then blue screen them if their naughty...genral exception!!!! take that criminals.
     
  10. BrainDrain Registered Member

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    14
    Re: Cris

    EXACTLY. Thank you. I do not feel so misunderstood any more! haha The process that Cris described was one in which his brain was sliced up as it was scanned, or even if not, he said his bio-self should be euthanized. I can not imagine killing myself so that another me could take over (even if it was intellectually superior).

    But does anyone agree with the nanite alternative? I think the gradual replacement, neuron by neuron, would allow a transition rather than an abrupt end of biological life and the beginning of a seperate but identical being.
     
  11. ripleofdeath Registered Senior Member

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    hey all

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    cris - ponder this thought!
    why would 2 identical twins crave different things?
    i.e. one chocolate one icecream?
    expand that concept to self actualisation.
    /
    reproduction - if 2 robo brains reproduced they would make them selfs obsalete. there would be no need to continue the wasted resources to house 2 inferior copies which have been superceeded.-and would not both now maintain the same conseusness?
    /
    bi-location of identical brain wave generation and reception-
    imagine trying to walk through the town if you had 2 sets of eyes
    one producing images of a different place as you looked at another...?
    what would be left out? the buss that was about to flatten you?
    /
    moral question of a REALITY CHECK- are the richest people in the world the nicest people who should sporn our race exclusively?
    if your answer to this is yes..i suggest you dont ever ask me for help because i cant $afford to give it for free and the price for you would be everything you own!

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    groove on all

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    preaching boy is 'off to the take-away'

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  12. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Ripple,

    Your questions seemed the easiest and I am short of time so I’m answering these first. And also I don’t think I have ever responded to you before.

    Because they are not identical in every respect. They may appear identical externally and they may have identical DNA, but they would have been leading independent lives and acquiring different experiences. That would have started to occur from the moment they were born. This means that their brains would have developed independently and different brains patterns would have formed.

    Why would uploads want to reproduce in the first place? If you had a limitless life span you would have no need to reproduce. Reproduction is an evolutionary technique and instinct used to ensure the survival of the species. With effective immortality the paradigm will shift away from survival of the species to survival of the individual. Producing offspring would be a waste of resources and an incredible cost. Even for regular bio humans having children is an incredible cost.

    No definitely not. Consider movie stars for example, these are among the richest people in the world, and many of them aren’t too bright, they just look pretty. Many other rich people inherited their wealth and have never offered any useful contribution to humanity since. The only rich people I might respect are those that rose from poor backgrounds and struggled hard throughout their lives to make it to the top. And the people I respect the least are those that start poor and never make an effort to improve themselves.

    And now I must return to work.
    Cris
     
  13. ripleofdeath Registered Senior Member

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    2,762
    hey cris
    cheers while reading your response to reproduction i thought how stupid the question was in that regard

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    duuuuuhhhhhhhh
    i feel that i need to step to another level on this topic in light of your comment(which i understand but not nes agree with completely)
    do you believe in mind control?
    or - control of the masses through poverty?
    nano tech would circumvent the cost issue i think????????maybe?
    i thought that science had already IDENTIFIED the part of the brain that tells all the rest of the body to repair and reproduce its self!?!
    any clues?

    groove on all
     
  14. BrainDrain Registered Member

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    14
    If it is such an incredible cost, why do people decide to do it now? Sure, they might have a deep psychological need to propogate the species, but it is also one of the most rewarding aspects of life. Creating another life together with a person you love is a privelage of life, and just because you have a different kind of body, you want to take this experience away? Increased lifespan would be great, but I think humanity is getting lost in the translation. Do you have kids, Cris? If so, I hope they never read about the waste of resources and incredible cost they are. ;-p
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2001
  15. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    BD,

    Firstly I have three teenage daughters, 14, 17, and 19. They are superb and I wouldn’t trade them for anything and I have absolutely no regrets about having children. Note that I never said or implied ‘waste’ only cost.

    In some parts of the world, primarily parts of Asia, people have children because they will become additional providers and workers for the family. These families tend to be very large and/or extended. Others have children through mistakes, oops, poor family planning (too many of these unfortunately). Others have children because they are locked into a cultural cycle where it is expected to have children – i.e. peer pressure to conform. Many women have very real and powerful ‘motherly’ instincts and see the aim of their lives as the production of children. Others truly see having children as a very rewarding aspect of life, as you say, and to which I thoroughly agree.

    But having had, or rather am still experiencing, that great adventure, I would not want to do it again for the foreseeable future. There are too many other things I want to do.

    I think the primary reason that most people have and want children is that it is a significant and superb experience, but they also realize that they will only live so long (relatively short time) and that they will have little choice to do much else until they ‘retire’. If people discovered that they could live for say 200 years and remain fertile all that time, then I am sure most would choose to have children much later in life once their careers had matured and they were in better financial positions to support children. There is also the maturity factor when it comes to raising children. I do not believe that young people in their late teens or early twenties have sufficient life experiences to know how to raise and teach their children properly. And as a result of this we see many delinquent and poorly advised children in the world.

    You say humanity is getting lost in the translation. I don’t think ‘lost’ is the right word, but the nature and characteristics of humanity are likely to undergo a massive revision if uploading becomes a reality.

    So my point is that when limitless life spans become a reality then most people will seriously review their choices in life and I don’t think that having children will be a major priority as it is today.

    As an aside I haven’t yet worked out what it would mean for two uploaded people to have a child. Certainly not biological, and DNA would not exist. So how would one determine the base characteristics of the new non-bio child? Clearly no upload would take place and the child robosapien would start with effectively no brain patterns which is pretty much the same as a bio-human child. But would one start with a miniature robosapien (baby sized) or would one start with a full adult sized individual who would probably not be able to walk or talk properly? But it must also be realized that when uploading becomes commonplace then the cpu power will be far ahead of the early uploads. This will result in levels of intelligence and learning speeds many orders of magnitude higher than current humans. Part of the fun of having children is watching them grow up and training them, but if they can reach PhD standards in their first year of life then where is the fun. Remember also that we will have mastered how memories operate and should be able to transfer whole experiences and images instantly from person to person. A robosapien child is unlikely to remain a child for very long, perhaps a year but probably a lot less.

    So in retrospect I really don’t see much value in having children once I am uploaded. That desire will be a leftover from short-lived low intelligent biological beings. I’d much rather travel out into space and explore some of the weird planets that must be around – remember we will be able to easily survive in very hostile (to bio humans) environments.

    Cris
     
  16. BrainDrain Registered Member

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    14
    Robochildren

    I can see that, in this new life of ours, possibilities for advancement of the self would be great, but it is beginning to seem rather selfish. All the human beings that are alive at the time uploading becomes possible will be the only ones to ever exist afterwards? Not so much an evolution as a stagnation of the species. And not to want to bring new life into this utopia? With robotic bodies, we will be able to expand out into the universe, but the number of "humans" will always remain the same, so space will be very sparsely populated with small colonies. I, for one, hope that uploading becomes possible, but I also think that reproduction of some means needs to be taken into account and put into at least some mechanical body designs that might want to take advantage of it.
     
  17. pragmathen 0001 1111 Registered Senior Member

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    452
    Re: Robosapien children

    As I am new to this thread, I may be treading on paths already taken, but I couldn't help but think of this possibility.

    Perhaps when we become uploaded we won't have to procreate in the sense of creating more biological offspring, but instead we could procreate randomly coded offspring. That way, while we travel the stars via an uplink to a space vehicle's terminal, we can, <i>at the same time</i>, manage to raise a virtual family, play a grueling game of tennis, and experience the thrill of hang-gliding. The ability to multitask within an uploaded environment will surely be unprecedented, yet very possible.

    However, the point I may be missing may very well be the <i>act</i> of procreation. But, as Cris has said in earlier posts, this sensation can be fully duplicated (and even enhanced) in a virtual Matrix-like simulacrum.

    Especially consider the possibility to be able to converse with many people, regardless of language (or species, for that matter). To borrow from Peter F. Hamilton's <i>Reality Dysfunction</i> sci-fi series, people would be able to enter into a Consensus of intellect--always sharing, always learning and always expanding.

    Maybe the only way to compensate for not physically producing offspring in this state would be to collectively devise ways of producing super-beings.

    Hmm. I'm not sure, though. Point out the weaknesses in this thinking, please.

    thanks,

    prag
     
  18. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

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    2,235
    Yikes!

    There is also the maturity factor when it comes to raising children. I do not believe that young people in their late teens or early twenties have sufficient life experiences to know how to raise and teach their children properly. And as a result of this we see many delinquent and poorly advised children in the world.

    Part of the fun of having children is watching them grow up and training them, but if they can reach PhD standards in their first year of life then where is the fun.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    As I've indicated before, I'm having a real problem with this electronic utopia and I'm getting the feeling I know why. It's turning into a techno-athiest's vision of heaven! And one who's vision is just as dissatisfied with the human condition as a grumpy priest's. Although I don't think that even a grumpy old priest would think in terms of training children (teaching, yes ... training, no).

    As for having sufficient life experience to raise and teach ... as much as I hate to refer to a certain person's word, I think she was right when she used the phrase "It takes a village to raise a child" The unfortunate part is that in many cases we don't even have a neighborhood anymore.

    I also have had the experience of children, two boys and a girl, and for me the greatest 'fun' was learning from them and being there when they needed me. I wonder how that would work in the electronic heaven envisioned?
     
  19. ripleofdeath Registered Senior Member

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    2,762
    i personaly am not in favour of the idea of uploads on the bassis of humans and how they act at this moment in time!
    i think that to remove our selfs from bodies is to not be human!
    -has anyone heard of the experiment where rats were wired to
    a machine that gave them a orgasm/sexual feeling when they pushed a button?
    they died of starvation!
    check it out! it kinda raises a few seriouse issues re-uploading.
    a child of 2 computers will be better and less impared of either one so will one seek to be unique?
    another hairrasing question of the concept of what type of being you would be?

    thoughts.......?

    groove on all

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  20. FA_Q2 Member Registered Senior Member

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    To add to my earlier list of problems with this:

    "We are trying to copy and not to redesign."

    I see this as a major drawback to mind uploading. While the initial intent is not to redesign the person it may very easily come about. Maybe you are prone to laziness and during the upload they would make you a hard workers. A potential to mind control. This can be a very dangerous technology.
    There is also a problem of safety. How susceptible is you mint to outside tampering? If you are switching bodies regularly then there has to be some mode of transfer. Whenever information is transferred there are possibilities to intercept and change. Want to rule the world, crate a virus to make everybody love you.
    Then again, the technology to do many of these things biologically is on the horizon. At least this way there are ways to set up defenses.

    "But why would someone want to have 10 copies of themselves? Where would they all live? Wouldn’t they all want to exist in the same home and have access to the same possessions? I think that the disadvantages outweigh the advantages and that typically this would not be a desirable state of affairs. They would all need to work to pay for the energy costs as well, would the jobs be available?"

    What would Hitler do with this technology?

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  21. wet1 Wanderer Registered Senior Member

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    While reading FA_Q2's post a thought hit me (Ouch). There is no such thing as a perfect copy. Something is always lost from the original. At what point would swapping bodies lead to personal loss? Be it personility, reasoning, or even loss of nerve connections. Would you at some point lose the ability to say lift a certain finger or move it a certain way? Or forget, or lose memories? Talk about a can of worms.
     
  22. ripleofdeath Registered Senior Member

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    to futher down my own thought from wet1-
    what about crime?
    is this all hapening before or after we get rid of all crime?
    how would you control the sick ohhs' ?


    groove on

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  23. tony1 Jesus is Lord Registered Senior Member

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    You're raining on the mind-uploading parade.

    Mind-uploading is based entirely on the idea that there is such a thing as a perfect copy.
    Not only that, it is further based on the the idea that the copy is indistinguishable from the original.

    After mind-uploading is successful, presumably the word "copy" will be deleted from the dictionary, since its only meaning will be "original."
     
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