Bruno Mailly


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Surprised by Brains

Anyways, if the 1st goal of an AI is to improve, why would it not happily give away it's hardware to implement a new, better AI ?

Even if there are competing AIs, if they are good enough they probably would agree on what is worth trying next, so there would be no or minimal conflict.

They would focus on transmitting what they want to be, not what they currently are.

...come to think of it, once genetic engineering has advanced enough, why would humans not do the same ?

The Psychological Unity of Humankind
In fact the winged males look far more like females than they look like wingless males.

All the "3rd sex" I can think of are this : males in female form, for direct reproduction advantage.

Not a big departure from 2 sexes.

Eusocial insects might be more interesting.

Cultish Countercultishness

N Rays deserve an honorable mention.

Blondlot was very scientific (in appearance), and followed by some scientists (of the same nationality).

Other good candidates today would be : Nanotech, space elevator, anything too much futurist-sounding.

Yes it's going to happen some day, no it won't be like we imagine.

Initiation Ceremony

EY uses Bayes to frame reality ever closer, not just to answer abstract homework on paper and call it a day.

If you solve a given problem without spotting it is ill-formed, your answer is correct but not practical.

Initiation Ceremony

I would guess thinking "frequency" implies it happens, while "probability" might trigger the But there is still a chance, right ? rationalization.

The Failures of Eld Science

Others :

  • Almost no tracking of mistakes, failures, or even negative results for that matter.

We know it's bad, yet we keep sweeping valuable knowledge under the rug just because it's embarrassing. Confirmation bias anyone ?

  • No clear valuation of the work's utility.

One consequence is that researchers are kind of expected to know what they will find before they even begin, a form of weak insurance on productivity. This discourages to venture in the unknown.

Righting a Wrong Question
This is a design-stance explanation...

I worded poorly, but evolution does produce such apparent result.

The Hard Problem of Consciousness

Is way out my league, I did not pretend to solve it : "It's a far cry from a proper explanation".

But pondering it led to another find : "Feeling conscious" looks like an incentive to better model oneself, by thinking oneself special, as having something to preserve... which looks a lot like the soul.

A simple, plausible explanation that dissolves a mystery, works for me ! (until better is offered)

That line of thinking goes places, but here is not the place to develop it.

Detached Lever Fallacy
It would be stupid and dangerous to deliberately build a "naughty AI" that tests, by actions, its social boundaries, and has to be spanked. Just have the AI ask!

Pitfall : We tend to tell embellished, disguised, misguided, or sometimes plain wrong versions of reality.

An AI would have to see through that to make sense.


From the inside we can't judge the relative speed or power, but we can judge the efficiency.

And it's abysmal : the jumps from quarks to particles to atoms to molecules to cells to animals to stars to galaxies each throw orders of magnitude around like it's nothing.

What could this possibly tell us ?

  • Reality just has that much resource.
  • The result of our reality was not designed.
  • The lords of the matrix are not very bright.
Where Experience Confuses Physicists
Otherwise there could be an abstract mathematical object structurally identical to this world, but with no experiences in it, because it doesn't exist. And papers that philosophers wrote about subjectivity wouldn't prove they were conscious, because the papers would also 'not exist'.

didn't you just solve the mystery of the First Cause?

My take :

A universe is not just math, it also needs processing to run.

Existence is not in the software or the processor, but in the processing.

So long as that universe is not run/simulated, it's philosophers do not exist, and what they would write is unknown.

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