[ExI] Wrestling with Embodiment

Kelly Anderson kellycoinguy at gmail.com
Wed Feb 1 18:42:49 UTC 2012

2012/2/1 Stefano Vaj <stefano.vaj at gmail.com>:
> On 1 February 2012 12:07, Kelly Anderson <kellycoinguy at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I for one want whatever comes after us (or that we evolve into) to
>> maintain an element of humanity (the ethical part, not necessarily the
>> people themselves) in the sense that there are genuine emotions
>> involved.
> Let me put it this way, which I consider the inevitable H+ POV: we used to
> be (kind of) reptiles.
> Those reptilian ancestors may well have thought fondly of the importance of
> maintaining the core of reptilianity in their successors.

I get your point, but of course they had no neo-cortex... :-)

> After a fashion, we did, since we fully partake of that legacy. But we have
> also moved over. Including in "ethical" and "emotional" terms. To consider
> posthumanity in human terms is a contradiction... in terms.

Fair enough Stephano. It's hard to argue with logic that tight.
However, I still hope for a gradual evolution away from humanity, and
I hope that whatever comes next retains the core of what is good about
being a Sapiens.

It is selfish of me to hope for this, and I recognize that... however,
I'm still selfish...

Also, I think we Sapiens maintain what is good about being a reptile.
I am also very grateful for my inner fish and all my other ancestors.
And the point of conversation that is potentially useful is to think
about what is it about humanity that is worth trying to maintain into
the next step... because we get to (initially) decide. My vote is that
the richness of human emotions is a good thing to try and work into
the next generation, with perhaps some tweaking. For example, if AGI
has compassion, I'd like it to have super human compassion, maybe
modeled on the Dali Lama... :-)  If it's going to have intelligence,
let it be super human intelligence, if it is going to have hate, maybe
not so much hate. That sort of thing. But to get rid of hate
altogether, to get rid of disgust, I think that would be a mistake as
it would possibly impede long term survival. We have a lot to
appreciate from our evolutionary endowment of emotions, and I'd hate
for post humanity to not be in touch with their inner Sapien.

As always, my major concern is that we don't create the next
generation in a pathological personality disordered sort of way. It
would be all to easy to do this, and it needs to be avoided or the
whole shooting match will go down the crapper. This is an existential
risk. I don't know if it's in the canonical list of existential risks,
but it should be. We don't know enough about human psychology to know
what personality disorders would result from a lack of emotion, but
it's easy enough to imagine that it might have negative consequences.
We only have one chance to get this right folks! Then it's out of our


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