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The laughter thing in argument is interesting. At BHTV there are a few that use it constantly and they come across as very likable people because of it but there is also lack of rigorous thought and defensibility of the POV. Or it is just recognition of the absurd in a very fundamental way, (nihilist)? They would never admit to nihilism but i think this is practice of it.

This is particularly a good watch if someone wanted to do an essay about laughter in argument. (really, watch it. A fundamentalist that believes we should have lots of babies and militarize space so we can build a space elevator and go to mars.) Compare his argument and debate style with Laniers.


This was disappointing. Lanier could not defend ANYTHING he said! He constantly changed the topic or argued from ignorance. We don't know so we can't know. Or im a really smart guy who has worked in this field for a long time and i have not found this idea useful. Ok valid but really limited statement. Also true that people can treat AI as a religion and it can make them nutty. But just because people believe wrong things about something does not make the subject itself wrong. example: quantum mechanics.

It is true that i have found AI and singularity people off putting but Laniers inability to defend his position has moved me to be more sympathetic to the efforts of strong AI people.

I think the one thing i would like to see defended is the time frame argument for AI. You do act different whether you think AI is imminent or that it is not. It could be ten years or it could be a few thousand. It does not seem decidable.

PS. Lanier started this BHTV clip trying to argue for epistemological soundness when considering AI statements and [URL=""]here[/URL] rejects completely epistemology. Why did he not just defend himself? He seemed to say yes i do accept an unjustified belief. He said that clearly, it seems defensible, but hen he seems to deny that that is even the point. why? He seems to want to avoid saying anything concrete even if he just said it and it was defensible he goes on to change the subject and say this is not something you can even talk about?