Uploading – Transition.

Discussion in 'Intelligence & Machines' started by Cris, Nov 10, 2002.

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  1. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Assumption: We can reach the point where we can digitize the human brain and transfer that information to a more resilient electronic medium, and when activated the result will be cognitive and emotional properties at least equal to the biological equivalent.

    Assumption: Existing as an electronic form has substantial advantages over a biological form. E.g. increased capacities for memory and intelligence, potentially unlimited lifespan, resilience to hostile environments, freedom from pain and disease, etc

    My concern then is what happens next. How do we make the transition from biological life to an electronic form?

    If the upload process is non-destructive to the biological entity then after the process you will exist as both an upload and as a biological being. Is this acceptable? Would you want this? What do you do with your biological self if you don’t want it to exist?

    I’m assuming here that you wouldn’t want your biological self to continue which means your old body must be destroyed. How does one achieve such a thing and still remain innocent of murder?

    What legal, cultural, and social changes must take place before we can resolve this tricky issue? I also suspect that religions will have massive problems with this. How do we deal with that issue?

    Cris
     
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Why not let the biological being and the computer being live their separate lives after uploading? After all, after the uploading their experiences will differ and they will go on to be different people.

    For the uploaded entity, he or she only has to wait a few decades and the problem will solve itself. There would be no reason for the uploaded entity to want any of the material possessions of the biological entity.
     
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  5. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member

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    Stephen Goldin wrote a very nifty story called The Last Ghost, involving specifically this topic. I suggest you check it out some time.
     
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  7. Rick Valued Senior Member

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    As Quoted By Jamer R:
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    After all, after the uploading their experiences will differ and they will go on to be different people.
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    Exactly.Good point.

    And ask yourselves another question...

    If the Uploaded world,or simulated world is perfect where no one dies,are our brains ready to accept such form of reality?are we <i>developed</i> enough to accept the idea of a perfect world?

    I am sure we have such concerns.Imagine...our world is what we see,(three dimensional)...perhaps there are beings out there who belong to higher dimensional world than us,they will be even more closer to a perfect state world perhaps...
    just some thoughts...


    bye!
     
  8. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Adam,

    Thanks, I'll check it out.
     
  9. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    James,

    I guess this depends on the objective of the process. For me personally I want to be rid of a fragile and limited biological body. Ideally I would want to transfer to the more resilient format and discontinue the old form.

    If all I do is create a copy of myself and one of me remains with the biological disadvantages then why would I want that? But this does introduce a whole set of problems of making perfect copies.

    But those last few decades would include pain and suffering, again I don’t see the point in subjecting a being to such torment.

    But if biological anti-aging remedies kick in then it might not be a few decades and bio-humans might be able to survive for very substantial periods. The downside is that human intelligence is not likely to grow very rapidly compared to the potential for CPU upgrades in an upload.

    But as for material possessions: I think that would be OK if you envisage the upload would live in a virtual world. I would much prefer a Robosapien environment where I would want to retain my physical possessions and home etc.
     
  10. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Zion,

    I’m not sure that the term ‘perfect’ is appropriate. Solving the death problem seems like a good first step to achieving some real freedom. The alternative is that you cease to exist. Are we ready? Probably not, but if our new brains can be upgraded fairly frequently then I suggest that we would learn very very quickly to accept the new paradigm

    What do you mean by perfect? I think that once we are free from the dangers of death then that represents a first stage in exploring the rest of the universe, and the beginning of a freedom that we have not been able to envisage before.

    If there are other beings out there then I suspect they would have gone through the same transition that we are about to instigate. I am not sure I can imagine what things there are to discover by us and other beings with intelligence ratings hundreds and thousands of times more advanced than current biological humans.

    I argued once before that aliens are not likely to be interested in us in our current primitive state. I would expect that they are looking forward to us making the transition to ‘superintelligence’. Then we become interesting and then First Contact could occur.

    I’m not sure if that answered your point.
     
  11. fadingCaptain are you a robot? Valued Senior Member

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    Just a quick thought...

    If you upload your brain information somewhere else, will you be uploading 'you'? Or will it create a new consciousness separate and distinct?

    I need to ponder this away from work...

    Nice topic.
     
  12. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    Fading,

    Depends what you mean by "consciousness" and "you".

    The assumption is that the brain is YOU and that there is nothing else.

    Is that what you meant?

    Cris
     
  13. fadingCaptain are you a robot? Valued Senior Member

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    Cris,
    Yes, the brain is 'you'. But you have to break it down futher than that:
    1.I believe we are the memories and thoughts as they exist in our brains. Therefore,
    2. if you replicate these functions in another entity, you would replicate my consciousness. But,
    3. it would not be 'me' as in my consciousness but a copy. So,
    4. you would not be uploading 'you'. You would be creating a copy of yourself.

    I point this out to illustrate that we would not be evading death, we would not be immortal. We would be creating copies of us that are potentially immortal. For some reason, that doesn't comfort me all that much. I want to be immortal not some damn copy of me

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    .
     
  14. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

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    fading,

    What is the difference between an original and a perfect copy?

    Have you ever made a copy of a CD? They are digitally identical to the point that it is impossible to tell which is the original and which is the copy. Effectively you would end up with two originals.

    So I don’t think there is a problem here.

    Do you have an issue with the idea of consciousness? Try to think of consciousness as the result of having a brain much the same way as walking and running is the result of having legs.

    The term immortality should be avoided here. I try to say “potentially unlimited lifespan” instead. Immortality implies cannot die, but with an upload the digital matrix could be lost or destroyed and if there is no backup then that entity would cease to exist.

    Does that help?

    Cris
     
  15. fadingCaptain are you a robot? Valued Senior Member

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    Cris,
    Yeah that helps.

    You would continue to be the first (original) and the copy (though identical) would be a new entity. But I suppose it would still be you...there would be multiple instances of yourself.
     
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