[extropy-chat] Avoid Too Much Change

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Sun Apr 8 02:17:05 UTC 2007

Brent writes

>> The reason that I would decline [downloading, i.e., as I define it a
>> paltry form of uploading in which one *immediately* assumes an
>> unrecognizablely advanced form that has almost nothing in common
>> with one's present form] is that I don't believe in souls, and so
>> cannot see---on scientific grounds---why the new little device
>> that I was supposedly downloaded into would resemble me
>> (or be me) at all
> Surely this will not be a problem at all.  There are two critical parts 
> of identity, both of which you mention, that would surely be preserved 
> by any aliens making us quickly into Gods.
> First off is the history of what you were.  Surely part of making us 
> Gods, would be the restoration of everything we have ever been, including 
> restoration of everything we have ever forgotten.  So all of us, at any 
> point in our history, would be perfectly remembered or even reloaded, 
> spawned off, and played with by all at will.

Yes, I agree.  A benevolent upload program offered by the first AI to 
take control of the solar system would include

      1. by "uploading" definition, all your memories would be
          preserved, including---as you wisely add---memories
          that you've already forgotten (to the degree that they
          can be retrieved).  This step is *vital*, else uploading
          has failed.
      2. a councilor/mentor who would caution you on the
          problems of too-rapid change, give you self-editing
          capabilities, but only with:
      3. retention, preservation, and backup of former versions,
          and a suggestion that to make sure that identity is
          safeguarded, many such earlier versions be given
          ample runtime
But I was speaking of a transformation that takes place almost
instantly. Do you really think that you would be the same person
if your IQ instantly went to 12000 and although you knew 
about it, it would have no more structure or interest to you
than the fetus you once were does?   In other words, did
you read my conditions carefully?  They're pretty radical!

>  (i.e. I wonder what life 
> had been like for me had I married Carolyn instead of Malia...)  And 
> even if the Gods didn't restore this for us, that would be the first 
> task I would want to get started on with all that infinite knowledge and 
> power right?

Oh yes.  But again, you seem to be addressing "the usual" benevolent
upload scenario, in which preservation of ordinary identity almost
certainly can be achieved, especially if one is careful.

> <snip>
> Anyway, I'm willing to bet anyone that this theory [of qualia] will be
> commonly accepted as fact in 10 or so years...

Weren't you saying that seven years ago?  :-)

> If you're out there, Gods, I tell you know.  Stop hiding from us and I 
> want all this now or as fast as is possible!  I'm sick and tired of 
> being trapped in this lonely ineffable spirit prison.

No one hopes more than I do that you Mormons were exactly
right all along.  So what's taking so long for the former Saints
(now Gods) to come to our aid?  My theory is that they're
still reeling from the shock of brother Brigham's latest ideas,
which he's been pounding into them since 1877, but will finally
come to our assistence soon.  (I happen to think that Brigham
was right about almost everything!)


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list