Thursday, April 10, 2014

Human Naked Intelligence of Average People is Going Backwards and the Human Cognitive Capacity Augmentation-Extending is a Matter of Degree

A comment of mine on a post that I encountered today, the full version of a partial one that I left there: http://www.singularityweblog.com/podcamp-toronto-2014-hole-ai-transhumanism-end-of-humanity/

It is addressed to the autrhor of the presentation and the article, see in the link.

I'd question that the exponential growth is hard to understand, it's rather a trivial mathematical concept (geometric progression), that is multiplication and sequences of multiplications - rather than additions. The example with the chess is an illustration of where an inconsiderate decision may lead, and the wisdom of the master.

However human sensory system is exponential even at its low level and multiplication is basic maths.

I'd question also the "intuitive" truth that everything is accelerating - one important thing that is not, which is going backwards, is the average/ordinary people's intelligence, when they are "naked".


Dumb people with smart technology can do more sophisticated tasks now, than some clever men in the past, but that's only apparently, and that intelligence is in the machines and in the other clever (or already "augmented") humans - who have provided it already and accumulated it there. [There was some article regarding that, for the time-traveler and a woman with a smartphone behind a curtain] People mostly just click buttons and tap on colourful icons, fighting for their attention. "Sixteen-core" smartphones with 4K cameras and 4 GB RAM - used to take pictures of meals or 100 shots of the night at the disco, or to send an 80-characters of a tweet, with an opinion "Listening to ... Feeling amazing". That's the sad "progress" of average people's intelligence...

For example most computer users, even engineers, do not have enough talent to conceive or design a computer from scratch, even an ABC-UNIVAC-like, they know how to push buttons the right way.

Nowadays the average people still can't play musical instruments, draw decently, dance decently, write stories and do lots of otherwise trivial activities, which talented people have done thousands of year ago. These ones still appear as "magical" for ordinary people - they just cannot get it. [See "multidomain and inter-domain blindness" in this blog and on the AGIRI list discussions.]

That is about to change, but the intelligence would be in the machine anyway, if you create something with a click of a button and you do not understand it deeply enough to model it with other means, it's the technology that does the job.

The technology, namely the dopamine-related short-circuits that are shocking the prefrontal-cortex through the exposure ot television, cheap reinforcement learning reward-cycles on social media, computer games and all sorts of blinking random pieces of images and text online, all these make the majority of people ever more superficial and having shorter attention span.

The questions which appear to them as "ground-breaking" or "unanswered" or "scandalous" were clarified and "scraped" down to their conceptual bones long ago, not only (or not by) the "VIP" figures that you mention, and these ideas are neither that new, nor that revolutionary.

Humans are already "augmented", every technology is extending their capacity, the "physical" merging and when it starts is a matter of a degree, both spatio-temporal and of effectiveness. The boundary is also not that sharp and is artificial - the retina is considered a part of the brain, the lenses of the eye and the pupil - they are also doing "preprocessing" - projecting and focussing. The only obvious "selfness" of the receptors in the body is that they have parts that are living cells, but without stimuli the receptors do nothing. For example, they say that blind-deaf people do not even try to explore the world, if left untouched (physically). They just freeze and stay, there's no external sensory stimulation, and their cognitive capacity is useless.

There are also philosophical views, such as externalisms, and the "extended mind" which point out the obvious fact, that humans are tightly bonded with the "tools" in the external world. We've been using the environment to do cognitive jobs in all times - I'd say that sensing itself is a form of basic preprocessing, in philosophical terms it's converting of the "thing in itself" in Kantian sense into phenomenons. The degree and the way of doing it is changing, and making people say "wow" that something is "new, revolutionary, ground-breaking" - it's a trick from marketing and propaganda, a boring way to grab attention of people who don't really care about the essence, but just about anything shocking, "new", "extraordinary", provided by some high-status "prophets". I assume talks about aliens, UFO or some religious mysteries may provoke similar interest...

The "concessus" among the wise men who are working in that theoretical field, for example on "what is human" (what "should be considered", apparently, or what humans think is human, or why humans want that they are "special" and how they rationalize that etc. etc.) is another topic.

Reaching to a concensuss is impossible between people with hugely varying intelligence, the majority wouldn't even get the real questions. It's rather about political sciences, public relations, pleasing the audience or scaring it out - as explained above.

IMHO the most deep works will never reach the minds of the ones who are not smart enough, and the superficial discussions and making people "involved" with the subjects are not understanding, it's just impressions, well a sort of... "techno-impressionism".

Current average people and also most of the "clever" ones still do not understand centuries old philosophy or also science and maths (pick for example Calculus), they may only see some illustrations, flashy expressions of the deep truth from such works, but they will not *understand* the "mechanics" behind, just "feel" something emotional or a shadow, or recite some words related to it.

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