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the anti-singularity

The technological singularity is the theoretical point in the development of a scientific civilization at which technological progress accelerates into infinity or beyond prediction. It is believed to happen after humans will create artificial intelligence smarter than themselves, which will then be able to create even better AI, causing ever accelerating increase of intelligence, and accelerating technological progress with it.

Some think it will happen this century. What if they're wrong? What if the opposite will happen? Are we heading for the end of all technological progress?

We may be. Consider "trusted" (treacherous) computing. The treacherous computing hardware we will see in the next few years should still be reasonably easy to switch off or hack, so anyone who wants to should be free to innovate as they want. Of course the supporters of TC don't want it to be broken, so they will integrate more and more into the CPU, which is difficult to attack for "soldering iron hackers". I expect eventually even the operating system will be part of the CPU, so noone could possibly make it run a different OS. Will there be technological progress after the PentiWin2015?

I don't think so. Why should there be? Noone has a choice to use something else instead, because with something else you won't be able to use your computer to communicate with the rest of the world. All the producer of PentiWins has to do is make them of really poor material that will disintegrate quickly, so you will regularly have to buy a new one. There's no need to innovate to make you want to buy newer and better stuff, because you will have no choice but to buy the same junk to replace your broken junk.

Without ever faster computers, there is a limit to the new research that can be done. And there you have it: the anti-singularity.

Avoiding the anti-singularity is easier than it may seem. All it takes is to make sure consumer choice will continue to exist: to avoid lock-in into TC. Make sure the majority of the digital world does not use TC, and it will never be successful because then the lock-in will backfire into a lock-out for those who do use it. Please, do not buy the TC junk. The unborn AIs of the time after the singularity will thank you Eye .

Comments

The question that we should

The question that we should be asking ourselves collectively at this point is, should we let human selfishness and petty interests outway the general human desire to evolve?

And the only cause for Trusted Computing (in fact "Trecherous Computing") and alike initiatives is exactly that, petty interests and selfishness, usually most demonstrated by those who already not only have enough, but have more than enough (power and money).

I do hope that the right side wins, because if we stop evolving, we will eventually start devolving. Evolution cannot continue if only few have the privilege to contribute to it, with the rest being mere observers and consumers.

Quote: Avoiding the

Quote:

Avoiding the anti-singularity is easier than it may seem. All it takes is to make sure consumer choice will continue to exist: to avoid lock-in into TC. Make sure the majority of the digital world does not use TC, and it will never be successful because then the lock-in will backfire into a lock-out for those who do use it. Please, do not buy the TC junk.

It's easier said than done, really. The problem is that alot of major corporations stand behind TC, even if a good part of them are just riding a bandwagon to be associated with a buzzword. It will take alot of shouting and educating the *general public* for them to actually start caring enough to refrain from buying stuff with DRM built in.

The fact that it is for most people hard to tell which DVD player, for example, has DRM in it and which doesn't, isn't helping. The marketing propaganda these companies will be making is also to our disadvantage. How to counter these difficulties?

You basically said what we should do and why, not how to do it, but I guess a whole new article could be written on the "how" subject.

Quote:

The unborn AIs of the time after the singularity will thank you Eye

Heh I'm not sure if that should inspire confidence or what, but I guess the wink explains it. Smiling I'm saying this because some consider ultra intelligent AIs to be a possible threat to humanity. (Yes I did read that wikipedia article you linked.) Eye

I don't really think an

 

I don't really think an ultra intelligent AI is a threat to humanity, or life really for that matter. Part of the problem with AI's is they don't really have any emotions or feelings. They don't really care about you. They follow pure logic and you can easily mess them up with logical paradoxes and that is why you have to be so careful when programing as I found out today.
Humans don't get so easily tripped up by such things, until they start believing things like the universe is logical, rational and reasonable, then they fall into a trap of starting to see how the world is going to end because it contradicts itself like a a bad computer program.

That's what they are now.

 
Jastiv wrote:

I don't really think an ultra intelligent AI is a threat to humanity, or life really for that matter. Part of the problem with AI's is they don't really have any emotions or feelings. They don't really care about you. They follow pure logic and you can easily mess them up with logical paradoxes and that is why you have to be so careful when programing as I found out today.
Humans don't get so easily tripped up by such things, until they start believing things like the universe is logical, rational and reasonable, then they fall into a trap of starting to see how the world is going to end because it contradicts itself like a a bad computer program.

That sounds like the "people" running our world today...

That's how AIs are now. Perhaps in the future that could change.

"What" is often easily

 

"What" is often easily answered, "how" is an open question.

The DVD player is an interesting example. Many DVD players implement the current DVD DRM (CSS) such that it can easily be circumvented. All you have to do is type a code you can find on the internet... you can even ask the salesperson to do it for you, many will!
Of course the next generation won't be so easy if every player will use the same TC chip. I wonder how people will respond to this. Will they say "oh well" and buy the latest gadget anyway? Or will they decide not to buy next gen DVDs and download pirate copies instead? A bit of both, probably.

One "how" is to develop a DRM free system that can be used instead of any device that uses DRM. Something like MythTV with a P2P client integrated into it maybe? Of course it should be available preinstalled on cheap pretty looking computers...

Another "how" is to try to undo the "programming is only for wizards" braindamage caused by most popular proprietary software. If you don't understand someone is taking your freedoms away because you think "that's the way it works, and I won't ever be able to understand", then it is unlikely you will protest against it.
Write a book that explains computers in a fun way. For examples, look at old books like "Your First BASIC Program". MetaPost seems like an interesting first language because basic concepts like loops can be explained visually using it. I have to admit I never used it, though...

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