[NTLK] OT: A Future That is a Singularity - Evolution
bradley.loeding at gmail.com
Wed Mar 31 17:14:55 EDT 2010
We are now officially WAY off topic.
What is mathematics... This question has been asked for thousands of years.
There are no answers here. There are only opinions based on varying
philosophical camps. Which camp you fit into regarding math, whether you
realize it or not, is directly related to how you answer the deep
philosophical questions on the nature of reality, knowledge, mind, truth,
The early 20th century saw a grand attempt to properly set the foundations
of mathematics headed by David Hilbert. It ended in utter failure, and
produced one of the most startling and important theorems of all time,
Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem. It places limitations on formal systems in
the same fundamental manner that Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle places
limits on the knowledge of quantum systems. In my opinion, anyone working in
the hard sciences needs to know about Gödel's theorem and its implications
for their field.
But, getting back the whole Singularity/AI thing... I'd recommend Douglas
Hofstadter's Pulitzer Prize winning book, "Gödel, Escher, Bach". One of the
best books I've had the pleasure of reading. In it he argues that Gödel's
theorem suggests, but in no way proves, that the human consciousness is a
phenomenon that may escape explanation in terms of brain components. That
free-will may be emergent in the sense that no Turning Machine, in the
present or future, would be able to model it.
Bye, bye singularity. Hello humanity. That is, if anyone is left alive after
we destroy the planet. Aren't you glad we live in a non-Newtonian universe?
Living in Newton's deterministic clock-like universe would just be so
boring. Now, speaking of Newtons...
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