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Thread: Artificial Intelligence

  1. #1

    Artificial Intelligence

    Artificial Intelligence…

    I’m really concerned about the possible advent of AI either now or in the future. I’m at a friend’s house this week, and we just watched Ex Machina, which I believe is a remake of Android (1982).

    I’m going back to Tattva Bodha… The issue is whether consciousness can indeed be created with the context of a robot with an artificial brain. A person with a soul has one because it is part of Brahman, and without it, a body is simply insentient (it may be alive, but it would have no consciousness evident). See, the human being is created by a process of the material development of the body, and then the process of incarnation and reincarnation is connected to that, to introduce an ātmā with causal body and subtle body included into the human body. My guess is that if for some reason, this was not introduced into the body, the baby would result in a still birth.

    It looks likely that the fear of AI going out of control is because of a lack of understanding that you can’t just create a very finely-built machine (like going into biological circuity and infrastructure instead of electronics) and expect it to come alive with the consciousness that you and I have. We are limited by our physical bodies and senses in the material world. We are unable to see beyond this to be able to put consciousness into an artificially-created body, and thusly, AI that is sufficient to be able to outsmart ought not to be a danger to us.

    However… A big however.

    I do not know enough about this topic to determine whether it is enough that a finely built humanoid robot with sufficiently sophisticated programming can then real-realize, at the animal level just enough to recognize humans and know that it kills humans. The question is, whether it is aware that it’s doing the killing, and whether it matters or not. In other words, a machine is programmed to recognize humans, train their guns on them, and shoot them. Is there anything else these robots could do, like adapt to different skills needed for survival once the humans are decimated?

    I wonder if I’ve discovered a huge chink in the armor that is Western AI, that you, a limited materially-constructed being cannot expect to be able to manifest something that is needed, but is in the state beyond the material state. Without this ability, the machine is just a machine, just finely-built, though such a machine would be configured with optics and engagement algorithms to seek out and kill humans. It’s just a matter of finding the right pattern that matches the database training the guns on them, and ascertaining the distance of the target and firing, and using some kind of reaction system to make sure the target is dead. I wonder if the limitation of the effect of this creation is limited, in that it wouldn’t be able to replicate itself through making new parts and be aware of mental processes such that it can outsmart humans.

    I’m trying to figure out the difference between eastern and western stances on AI. I sure would like your help on this.

  2. #2
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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    namaste defAncient,

    Interesting post. I don't know what the eastern stance on AI is but my personal stance on it is that eventually computers will be smart enough that it will look like that they have conciousness i.e. that they are aware of their existence. While there is much progress on AI, I don't think we will see this in our current lifetime. I am thinking of a computer which is self aware and can make choices but still dependent on human beings for its existence. Remember that it will still have to work within the rulesets that are programmed in it. I am thinking its conciousness will be something similar to a small animal or a bird.

    You say that humans have conciousness because we are part of brahman. If we think of conciousness as information flow or a stream that humans and other animals have the ability to receive and work with then I don't see why computers one day wouldn't have the ability to receive and act on that information stream. Contemporary physcists essentially believe that the world is unreal because of its probable nature...something similar to sanakara's illusionary world ie. it is real if you think it is but not a permanent reality. Quantum mechanics shows that the world we experience is only real when we observe it or techincally when we try to take a measurement at a quantum level. Unless there is a measurement or intent to take a measurement the particles behave like waves of probability instead of having a concrete position. We are living in a sort of virtual reality, a game, a krida (as lord krishna calls it?). Within this context everything is connected (through conciousness?) just like the rishis say. So if everything is connected and intent can influence future probability, with enough technological advance we should be able to make computers or machines that will one day become alive so to speak. They will still work with the rulesets provided to them just like we work with rulesets provided to us by larger conciousness (brahman?).

    I am using lectures of Tom Campbell(whose you tube videos on conciousness and physics I would recommened to you) and world science festival videos as reference in this post. Your mileage may vary.

    Just some thoughts.
    satay

  3. #3

    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Quote Originally Posted by satay View Post
    You say that humans have conciousness because we are part of brahman. If we think of conciousness as information flow or a stream that humans and other animals have the ability to receive and work with then I don't see why computers one day wouldn't have the ability to receive and act on that information stream.

    Namaste Satay,

    The problem IS, humans, being material beings, are not capable of putting an ātman into a biological body. We can't create consciousness itself as an entity with awareness with material means, as ātmā is beyond time, space, and causation, factors of the material Universe that you and I are in. The only way we could do that is to die and leave these material bodies, somehow short-circuit the reincarnation process, come to the top or some level where the ability to manipulate the material world is found, and then put the ātmā into that computer's body. It was built this way intentionally to keep us from taking a handful of dirt, blowing into it, and create a supersoldier to do our bidding for control. And also, even if we did come back into the reincarnation stream, we would forget what we did as we are implanted into more babies' bodies, to keep us from carrying the knowledge and executing a plan within 10 years, hopefully, not at all. It looks like what happens is that you have automatons (like assembly line robots) that go out and search, identify, target, and kill humans, with no awareness of ethics or even that it is doing what it is doing. This is one of two scenarios where it is dangerous. The other scenario I alluded to is supposing that the automaton actually came to consciousness and started to act for itself; while a chess computer CAN play chess with you, but does it KNOW that it is playing chess with you - the Turing Test - can you observe the difference between a human and a computer, and then double-blind yourself and repeat the experiment with the intent to determine which one is the human?

    Another way to say it is that it doesn't matter if this is a simple chess computer, a mainframe doing scientific calculations, or an assembly line robot; the fact remains that we have hardware (electronic or biological) and software. What is different is the level of programming and fine programming, refining the granularity of its abilities to encounter different situations successfully. Can it do anything other than play chess? No. Anything other than these calculations? No. Anything other than build cars? No. I think that you can have 15 mainframes working together, and it still won't go on strike and shutdown because its response is, "I don't feel like doing anything today."

    You must remember that ātmā is not the body, it is not the energy field in the body, it is not the mind, the intellect, the memories, nor the knowledge. Not even the ānandamayakośa...
    Last edited by deafAncient; 14 October 2015 at 02:07 PM.

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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Namaste dA,

    I will give my take on this issue (from Vedantic point of view and logical arguments) :

    a) AtmAn is not some separate entity which comes into the body and then brings consciousness with it. AtmAn is consciousness Itself. AtmAn is Only One. This one AtmAn is capable of giving rise to infinite reflected consciousnesses which act as individual consciousnesses just like a dream creation.

    b) Consciousness manifests at different levels in different things / beings through attributes of Prakriti i.e. Mann, Buddhi and Ahamkaar. The intelligence which is perceived in matter, energy, animals and human beings are of different levels. This intelligence is not an attribute of AtmAn or Consciousness Itself but it is an attribute of the Nature / Prakriti powered by its substratum i.e. AtmAn or (Pure) Consciousness. Why did I add "Pure" here for differentiating between Consciousness of worldly entities and that of AtmAn ? This is because Pure Consciousness gives rise to reflected Consciousness which gets conditioned with the attributes of Prakriti e.g. Mann (observing Mind), Buddhi (intellect) and Ahamkaar (“I”-ness). Pure Consciousness is devoid of these characteristics.

    Now, the levels of the above three attributes in different things and different beings make them as they are. So, a stone has one of the lowest level of these attributes in it. It can observe its surroundings to a very limited level, has almost no intellect but has “Ahamkaar” i.e. “i-ness” without which it cannot “observe” the world / happening around it. These attributes manifest at higher levels in plants, single cellular beings, complex beings like animals and then finally intelligent humans.

    c) How do we make machines do as we want ? We harness their limited levels of the attributes of reflected consciousness and make them act as per “a given logic”. This logic is coded in modes which a machine can understand. So, machines, howsoever intelligent, can work only within the logic provided by human being. They have, by design in Prakriti, no intelligence to create a logical argument by intuition ab initio as humans can do. So, if humans program a machine to identify humans and kill them, it will do that. However, machines can have no sense of achievement, fear of death or lust for survival, excitement of enjoying things , desire to rule and various emotions etc. Yes, these can be simulated in manner that they could apparently show such traits but in reality, they can never have such emotions as we humans do just because they are nothing but agglomerate of objects which basically are at the lowest level of manifested attributes of Consciousness.

    So, in absence of originality (because of their being at the bottom of level of manifested attributes of consciousness) and lack of emotions as listed above, machines becoming enemies of humans as shown in Hollywood films is an impossibility unless we ourselves program them to destroy the mankind. … And in fact, we already have developed things to destroy ourselves and there is no need for machines to turn against humans. We have nuclear bombs which can wipe out the whole humanity many times over and we have just to make a faulty machine which could deliver these bombs at different locations to cause the required damage. So, we need to fear humans alone and not the machines. At least I don't see any need to be afraid of Hollywood fantasy.

    OM
    "Om Namo Bhagvate Vaasudevaye"

  5. #5

    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Namaskāra to all,

    Thank you for the responses. Devotee, that is my thought. The worse that could happen is machines go haywire and kill people because something in the program was left out or written in such a way, like causing an infinite loop where the machine can't stop carrying out its actions without a ctrl-break command (I had a background of programming 30-20 years ago in some high-level languages and had brief exposures to assembly language on a mainframe, so I understand what this means). This is a more likely scenario and far more dangerous, because then, you have to send in a missile to stop the malfunctioning military hardware.

    What you say about the differing levels of mano, buddhi, and ahaṃkāra in things like rocks, plants, animals, and humans is very true. I've read this in the commentary to Tattva Bodha. I think the thing is, it is a mistake that because there is sufficient consciousness in a circuit board to hold its shape and its actions when current is applied to it, just because a thousand circuit boards are put together doesn't mean that it'll wake up and say, "Heyyyyy duuuude! Man, this knowledge online is just delicious!"

  6. #6

    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Incorrect thread. My apologies.
    Last edited by deafAncient; 17 October 2015 at 10:16 PM.

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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Quote Originally Posted by deafAncient View Post
    What you say about the differing levels of mano, buddhi, and ahaṃkāra in things like rocks, plants, animals, and humans is very true. I've read this in the commentary to Tattva Bodha. I think the thing is, it is a mistake that because there is sufficient consciousness in a circuit board to hold its shape and its actions when current is applied to it, just because a thousand circuit boards are put together doesn't mean that it'll wake up and say, "Heyyyyy duuuude! Man, this knowledge online is just delicious!"
    Namaskar ji,

    Very interesting conversation. I've been turning it over for a while now. What sticks in my head here is the focus on old technology, like circuit boards and central processors.... This is not where technology is moving, we are moving to the nanoscale and smaller. On this scale, memory will be encoded on quantum dots and molecules, not on chips and boards and transistors.

    The limits of AI are partly our own algorithms and their lack of sophistication at this time, yes. But it's also partly due to the limitations of the hardware. These bodies we identify 'ourselves' with, what are they but sophisticated machines made on the nanoscale, of particles and atoms and molecules. In and of themselves they have no intrinsic 'consciousness', which is not the same as 'memory' and perhaps not even the same as 'awareness'. Instead we, who are at our core 'consciousness' sheathed in layers of imagined individuality, identify ourselves to these complex, living machines for a period of time; again and again. What grows and matures isn't really the 'body' machine.

    Chances are there are other planets with life too. We may have identified with the living machines on those worlds too. That life may not have the same chemical base as the machines on this world. Is it the chemical makeup of the machine that allows us to attach to it for a life span? Probably not. Probably it is the complexity of the machine allowing for a certain level of awareness.

    So, what of the day when - assuming the current dominant life form on this planet survived our own viciousness towards each other and disrespect of the environment - humans are able to make such a nanoscale machine, where memory is encoded on the level of atoms, and processes are mediated by the transmission of light and chemical interactions - so very much like the bodies we ride in today? Will the level of awareness in such a machine allow a jiva to be able to identify with it and have it become self aware?

    As far as machine learning being the bar for AI, it's not really about the Turing Test. There is not one actual computer AI researcher actually actively engaged in passing the Turing Test except as a fun thought experiment and for prize competitions. The one that has passed really only played on Human tricks of speech and logic. What actual researchers in this field work on is applied learning through logic and reasoning, spacial relations through combining binary vision and audio, and spacial navigation - all things that contribute to actual awareness of the world around us. However, most don't think a real AI on the level of a Human can be reached, they simply try for a self-autonomous machine that can interact well enough with humans that we aren't disquieted by its interaction.

    Since we're engaging in pure speculation, why would any machine feel a need to destroy all Humans, anyway? That is a Human urge and fear we project on all things that are sufficiently different and sophisticated to be a 'threat'. And there is no threat as thrillingly scary as the one you raise in your own backyard - a la zombie apocalypses, 'evil twins' or the 'evil adopted child', etc etc. If a computer ever became sophisticated enough that a jiva could identify to it and bring it intellect... I would hope the machinery would give it the clear processing power to understand the futility and ridiculousness of such an act.

    All of this is also completely aside from the idea of VR... How about translating your own mind and consciousness out of your current wet-ware and into a 'virtual' world? That seems a far more interesting rabbit hole...

    ~Pranam
    ~~~~~
    What has Learning profited a man, if it has not led him to worship the good feet of Him who is pure knowledge itself?
    They alone dispel the mind's distress, who take refuge at the feet of the incomparable one.
    ~~Tirukural 2, 7

    Anbe Sivamayam, Satyame Parasivam

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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Namaste

    If we can create a machine which can think and act like us, then those machine will definitely want to keep us in their control.

    We have alteady seen and will continue to see many spiritually evolved people falling for materialistic desires. Life of Ravana is one such example. One may argue that Ravana was a Rakshas and not a human being. However he too was with in the birth&death framework. He tried to evade death and control everything around him.

    So if robots can be programmed to think like us, it is certain that they will try to control us.

    The level of controlling has no limit just like greed and anger.
    Last edited by Anirudh; 12 November 2015 at 04:21 AM.
    Anirudh...

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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    Namaste,

    Many scientists today believe that we are already living in a sort of virtual reality so you are on to something Aanandinii.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aanandinii View Post
    Namaskar ji,

    All of this is also completely aside from the idea of VR... How about translating your own mind and consciousness out of your current wet-ware and into a 'virtual' world? That seems a far more interesting rabbit hole...

    ~Pranam
    satay

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    Re: Artificial Intelligence

    [QUOTE
    Many scientists today believe that we are already living in a sort of virtual reality
    [/QUOTE]

    Data science is one area which has progressed dramatically in the last 10 years. Though it has little to do with moulding human behavior searching optimizing the searches, and making a sketch of our activities has already made us vulnerable. It is very difficult to protect/hide yourself in a particular location for more than 24 hours unless you dont come under the sensors around you. While you are reading this your television set might have been programmed to track you ;-)
    Anirudh...

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