[extropy-chat] Serenity: "...make people better."

The Avantguardian avantguardian2020 at yahoo.com
Fri Oct 14 21:57:59 UTC 2005

--- "Robert J. Bradbury" <bradbury at aeiveos.com> wrote:

> Noticing the recent successes in the DARPA car race
> (as well as the fact that software can "understand"
> speech, can speak, and rewrite news articles) people
> should realize that the competition down the road
> is going to be wish computer software & AIs not
> so much with other humans.

Being "downsized" and replaced by automation is one of
the big fears of luddites. It is not competition per
se, because the software gets nothing for its efforts.
How can anybody compete with something capable of
working 24/7 for free?  

 For example -- how long
> before all truck drivers are replaced with "driving"
> software?  5 years?  10 years?  One of the reasons
> Volkswagon contributed to the Stanford car effort
> is because they want to put the driving software
> into cars to make them safer.  Once you do that
> then replacing the driver become only a matter
> of time.

I don't think so. Autopilot and aviation software has
been around for years and most commercial airliners
essentially fly themselves most of the time. But
pilots are necessary to handle any unforeeable
circumstances and hardware failures that come up. It's
one thing for the vehicles in the Darpa challenge to
successfully navigate a course. It is quite another
thing for them to have one of its tires blow out at
high speed and evasively steer their disabled selves
around a school bus full of children and pedestrians
on the sidewalk. 

> The one hope here is that we get the nanotech
> breakthroughs
> that allow "Sapphire Mansions".  In such
> environments
> the concept of "wealth" has to shift.

I don't see how nanotech is going to solve this
problem. Using nanotech to create sapphires at will
isn't going to build wealth for people who have been
pushed out the job market by automation. It is just
going to make sapphires worthless. If the concept of
wealth shifts it will be torward those things that
intelligent machines would find valuable. Which
immediately excludes many commodities that people find

The Avantguardian 
Stuart LaForge
alt email: stuart"AT"ucla.edu

"I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it through not dying." - Woody Allen

"Our hope of immortality does not come from any religions, but nearly all religions come from that hope" - Robert G. Ingersoll

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