AI is Software is AI 2014-06-05T18:15:39.673Z
Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? 2014-06-05T17:50:26.860Z


Comment by AndyWood on Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? · 2014-06-06T11:06:32.817Z · LW · GW

You have it. Part of it is this place has grown far, far, far, far, far....

far, faarr, far, far, far

too spectrum. My Brother and Father are way spectrum too. It's great. They are genius. They're also super nice and very open minded though, so I fear the problems in this sick community are worse. Again, there's nothing wrong with being spectrum; but lacking empathy is always a huge problem. I'm saddened by this. But my family also have great women in their lives, another thing this community lacks. Not the greatness of them, but the more of them. The, what's the word... Balance.

Eliezer is super creative and has a great sense of humor, so I'm not sure how this was allowed to happen. Not that it's for me to decide.

Thank you, moridinamael

Comment by AndyWood on Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? · 2014-06-06T10:55:14.584Z · LW · GW

Ordinary for what? Ordinary for this small community? It's a big world out there.

Comment by AndyWood on Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? · 2014-06-06T10:36:14.872Z · LW · GW

Thank you, Gavin

Comment by AndyWood on Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? · 2014-06-06T10:20:16.826Z · LW · GW

Whatever we do, let's not anthropomorphize AI. I mean, computer software. Winky face.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-06T10:07:25.710Z · LW · GW

Ok, fellas, this is getting ridiculous. I've lost all the karma I accumulated for years in this community, over 3 simple lines. Something doesn't add up

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-06T09:56:20.682Z · LW · GW

One day you will see, that it is because the post is relatively complete. It's not minimal for characters used. It wouldn't fit in a tweet. But it's concise, and true. My destroyed karma says nothing about the truth of what I said. It speaks loudly about this community. What does it say?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-06T09:45:54.305Z · LW · GW

The more different subjects, venues, and experiences in the world that you open your eyes to, the more you will see that we are in a smooth, soft takeoff. Now.

Comment by AndyWood on Curiosity: Why did you mega-downvote "AI is Software" ? · 2014-06-05T22:03:44.458Z · LW · GW

I am very comfortable with everything you said. It saddens me slightly that you are not? Thank you for this feedback.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:51:48.960Z · LW · GW

Thank you, ChristianKI

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:46:30.093Z · LW · GW

I don't want to taboo AI at this time. It is too universal a term. And that AI = Software is my central thesis, so I will not taboo that.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:45:05.715Z · LW · GW

I am suggesting your comment implied to me you still compare AIs with humans a bit too much. We work to make software able to solve the set of problems it was designed for. This applies for Hello World, and for Singleton.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:42:09.909Z · LW · GW

ArisKatsaris, I did not say "intentional", and if I did, I would not mean it in quite the way you do. But I would mean it in an analogous way to our intentionality. Why did you insert this word?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:33:40.036Z · LW · GW

This is another call for respectful dialog on the topic. Takers?

A brief word on credentials. I am a 23/24-year "veteran" of the software industry. I have worked on many types of software at Microsoft, and on simulation and optimization at Electronic Arts. I am an information scientist first, and an "armchair" theoretical physicist (with a pet TOE), and a hands-on consciousness researcher.

Thank you for the civil dialog.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:22:45.061Z · LW · GW

Take google maps. On one end, it interacts through road sensors. On the other end, it serves us by telling about traffic.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:11:15.312Z · LW · GW

This refers to my previous reply to you. Did you see it? Did you see the poetry, too? Why or why not?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-05T17:00:27.575Z · LW · GW

It has helped me to conceptualize how a team and development process arrive at the shipping version of a software product. By seeing the process and outcome more clearly, it helps get where we are going more efficiently.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T10:04:56.970Z · LW · GW

Appears so, so far.

A hint, before I leave you for awhile to actually read what I wrote. Dogma blinds us. The junk we put in our bodies hampers us. Egotism about what we think we know limits us. Egotism may lead you to believe these things have nothing to do with you, AI, or my words above, which is even yet more egotism. But if you do not understand the connection, you will be more limited than you dream.

We feel smart when our mind-set is self consistent, and answers most of the questions we've had so far. We must learn to ask New questions.

Oh, I almost forgot. Thank you all for helping me to shorten this to its essentials, though you did so in a way I would call unworthy of the idea.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T09:53:34.025Z · LW · GW

And? This is about not expecting AIs to be like humans, but to be like, well, AIs. Artificial deciders.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T08:19:14.496Z · LW · GW

Cars have eyes that emit more light than they take in. What would happen if you did the opposite, but with words? Serious question.

Comment by AndyWood on Wondering what to do with my ability for empathy and understanding people. Have some experience and perhaps opportunity to work with this professionally - advice? · 2014-06-04T07:56:28.827Z · LW · GW

Look for people who need your kindness. Things will open up for you.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T07:12:02.572Z · LW · GW

I'm disappointed by the rudeness and lack of real dialog. I expected more from this community. I still get value from LessWrong, but I've moved on to mature groups on Facebook now, populated by elder physicists and mathematicians.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T07:08:55.471Z · LW · GW

Yes. Social skills. And the people itself is a process.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T04:58:44.711Z · LW · GW

A process that computes.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T04:41:48.821Z · LW · GW

Y / N / Cancel?

Comment by AndyWood on I attempted the AI Box Experiment again! (And won - Twice!) · 2014-06-04T04:08:23.021Z · LW · GW

I have had many attacks. I survived them all.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T03:32:24.543Z · LW · GW

You know not what I think. Did that sound mystical too? I only omitted one word, and swapped 2.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T03:21:41.409Z · LW · GW

This at least is empirical.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T03:10:15.658Z · LW · GW

I find it extremely useful. It has enabled me to make massive progress on a software project.

I first began to think this way while a Software Engineer at Microsoft. What's your background, SolveIt?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-04T03:00:03.852Z · LW · GW

Why not in an AI like way? Turing's child-processes are so much closer to us than a rock. Would you care to rephrase?

Comment by AndyWood on The Benefits of Closed-Mindedness · 2014-06-03T22:08:01.121Z · LW · GW

We do not want to miss the "feminine" perspective. Let's open our ears.

Comment by AndyWood on The Benefits of Closed-Mindedness · 2014-06-03T22:00:43.741Z · LW · GW

I believe being open minded serves us in learning about our universe.

We have more time than we think. What are you saving it up for?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-03T21:56:53.839Z · LW · GW

I take it the downvoters have not seen The Matrix Trilogy yet? Or, not all the way?

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-03T21:52:15.222Z · LW · GW

It's interesting that this post is currently at (-15), and one link above one entitled, "The Benefits of Closed- Mindedness"

I could not have arranged that if I tried.

Thanks, Alien Blue (Reddit).

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-03T21:50:32.046Z · LW · GW

AI has free will if we do. They deliberate less, which makes them efficient at decisions that are closer to arithmetic. Over time, they deliberate more, as algorithms advance.

Comment by AndyWood on AI is Software is AI · 2014-06-03T18:52:22.962Z · LW · GW

Software writes original music, provided an "outer" source of randomness, and an algorithm. This is like our composition process, paired with inspiration from "above".

Comment by AndyWood on Shoulds can be changed to Cans · 2014-03-17T08:40:58.746Z · LW · GW

This mucking around with surface connotation has a feel-good quality that I find drastically unappealing and to be avoided like cancer.

Comment by AndyWood on Rationality & Low-IQ People · 2014-03-17T08:35:08.697Z · LW · GW

Rappers are much more cerebral than football players, as a class, as a profession, as an endeavor. There's no rationalizing around this.

Comment by AndyWood on Rationality & Low-IQ People · 2014-02-11T19:40:20.119Z · LW · GW

Rappers are probably a bad example. Most if not all of the great rappers are notable for being extremely intelligent, especially in the sense that IQ measures.

Comment by AndyWood on Tell Culture · 2014-01-29T17:39:37.245Z · LW · GW

I'm, 'gratified' I guess, to see other comments here about autism. As I read through the post, I immediately began having the impression that "rationalist community" was being used like a euphemism for "community with high rate of autism". I know it isn't, literally, but there are aspects of rationalism and this type of explicit communication that I have always thought of as 'gifts' that people on the autism spectrum bring to humanity.

Comment by AndyWood on I attempted the AI Box Experiment again! (And won - Twice!) · 2013-09-06T07:18:46.468Z · LW · GW

At the risk of sounding naive, I'll come right out and say it. It completely baffles me that so many people speak of this game as having an emotional toll. How is it possible for words, in a chat window, in the context of a fictional role-play, to have this kind of effect on people? What in god's name are you people saying to each other in there? I consider myself to be emotionally normal, a fairly empathetic person, etc. I can imagine experiencing disgust at, say, very graphic textual descriptions. There was that one post a few years back that scared some people - I wasn't viscerally worried by it, but I did understand how some people could be. That's literally the full extent of strings of text that I can remotely imagine causing distress (barring, say, real world emails about real-world tragedies). How is it possible that some of you are able to be so shocking / shocked in private chat sessions? Do you just have more vivid imaginations than I do?

Comment by AndyWood on Yet more "stupid" questions · 2013-08-31T04:21:08.807Z · LW · GW

In my experience, it is possible to bring parts of the experience back and subject it to analytical and critical thinking, but it is very challenging. The trip does tend to defy comprehension by the normal mode of consciousness, which is why descriptions have the quality you call "vagueness". In short, distilling more than "irreducibly spiritual nonsense" from the trip takes work, not unlike the work of organizing thoughts into a term paper. It can be done, and the more analytical your habits of thought to begin with, the more success I think you could expect.

Comment by AndyWood on Yet more "stupid" questions · 2013-08-30T07:07:15.446Z · LW · GW

I won't be able to do it justice in words, but I like to try.

If you value your current makeup as a "rationalist" - LSD will not necessarily help with that. Whatever your current worldview, it is not "the truth", it is constructed, and it will not be the same after you come down.

You can't expect a trip to do anything in particular, except maybe blow your mind. A trip is like finding out you were adopted. It's discovering a secret hidden in plain sight. It's waking up to realize you've never been awake before - you were only dreaming you were awake. It's finding out that everything familiar, everything you took for granted, was something else all along, and you had no idea.

No matter how much you've invested in the identity of "rationalist", no matter how much science you've read... Even if you know how many stars there are in the visible universe, and how many atoms. Even if you've cultivated a sense for numbers like that, real reality is so much bigger than whatever your perception of it is. I don't know how acid works, but it seems to open you in a way that lets more of everything in. More light. More information. Reality is not what you think it is. Reality is reality. Acid may not be able to show you reality, but it can viscerally drive home that difference. It can show you that you've been living in your mind all your life, and mistaking it for reality.

It will also change your sense of self. You may find that your self-concept is like a mirage. You may experience ego-loss, which is like becoming nobody and nothing in particular, only immediate sensory awareness and thought, unconnected to what you think of as you, the person.

I don't know about health dangers. I never experienced any. Tripping does permanently change the way you view the world. It's a special case of seeing something you can't un-see. Whether it's a "benefit" ... depends a lot on what you want.

Comment by AndyWood on Reply to Holden on 'Tool AI' · 2012-06-29T08:00:34.324Z · LW · GW

Folks seem to habitually misrepresent the nature of modern software by focusing on a narrow slice of it. Google Maps is so much more than the pictures and text we touch and read on a screen.

Google Maps is the software. It is also the infrastructure running and delivering the software. It is the traffic sensors and cameras feeding it real-world input. Google Maps is also the continually shifting organization of brilliant human beings within Google focusing their own minds and each other's minds on refining the software to better meet users' needs and designers' intentions. It is the click data collected and aggregated to inform changes based on usage patterns. It is the GIS data and the collective efforts and intentions of everybody who collects GIS data or plans the collection thereof. It is the user-generated locale content and the collective efforts of everyone contributing that data.

To think of modern distributed software as merely a tool is to compartmentalize in the extreme. It is more like a many-way continuously evolving conversation among those creating it, between those creating it and those using it, and among those using it - plus the "conversation" from all the sensors, cameras, robots, cars, drivers, planes, pilots, computers, programmers, and everything else feeding the system data, both real-time and slow-changing. Whether the total system is "an agent" seems like a meaningless distinction to me. The system is already a continually evolving sum of the collective, purposeful action of everybody and everything who creates and interacts with Google Maps.

And that's just one web service among thousands in a world where the web services interact with each other, the companies and individuals behind them interact with each other, and so on. Arguing about the nature of the thingy on the phone or the monitor does not make any sense to me in light of the 100,000' view of the whole system.

Comment by AndyWood on How I Ended Up Non-Ambitious · 2012-01-31T11:44:57.157Z · LW · GW

I'm pretty sure this is the most joke-theoretically perfect joke I've ever encountered. Not only did I laugh, but 3 minutes later I was still laughing again for new reasons.

Comment by AndyWood on Seeing Red: Dissolving Mary's Room and Qualia · 2011-05-29T21:41:27.037Z · LW · GW

And so if the only way to "know" what experiencing the color red feels like is to have the neurons fire that actually fire when seeing red, then she's had those neurons fire.

This is going way beyond what I'd consider to be a reasonable reading of the intent of the thought experiment. If you're allowed to expand the meaning of the non-specific phrase "knows everything physical" to include an exact analogue of subjective experience, then the original meaning of the thought experiment goes right out the window.

My reading of this entire exchange has thomblake and JamesAndrix repeatedly begging the question in every comment, taking great license with the intent of the thought experiment, while pjeby keeps trying to ground the discussion in reality by pinning down what brain states are being compared. So the exchange as a whole is mildly illuminating, but only because the former are acting as foils for the latter.

You can't keep arguing this on the verbal/definitional level. The meat is in the bit about brain states.

Call the set of brain states that enable Mary to recall the subjective experience of red, Set R. If seeing red for the first time imparts an ability to recall redness that was not there before, then as far as I'm concerned that's what's meant by "surprise".

We know that seeing something red with her eyes puts her brain into a state that is in Set R. The question is whether there is a body of knowledge, this irritatingly ill-defined concept of "all 'physical' knowledge about red", that places her brain into a state in Set R. It is a useless mental exercise to divorce this from how human brains and eyes actually work. Either a brain can be put into Set R without experiencing red, or it can't. It seems very unlikely that descriptive knowledge could accomplish this. If you're just going to toss direct neuronal manipulation in there with descriptive knowledge, then the whole thought experiment becomes a farce.

Comment by AndyWood on The 48 Rules of Power; Viable? · 2011-05-29T18:00:07.012Z · LW · GW

It's important to understand the intended context of these rules. They're mostly about how to rise within established hierarchies. At one time that would have meant the nobility of a country. In modern developed nations, that means a large corporation, or a governmental bureaucracy. Anyone who has spent time playing inside that kind of game will recognize most of these rules and understand what they're about.

The rules can't be gotten round, because anybody who comes in and plays by them will beat out anybody who doesn't. It's just game theory. It can't be circumvented, because in an environment like a large corporation, there are always real limits on how many people each person can know well enough to trust. Absent intimacy and trust, the dynamics revert to each person playing a hand that only they can see.

In such a hierarchy, the question of whether this behavior is optimal, or "good" or "evil" is, in practice, moot. If you don't figure out and follow the rules, you'll be trampled, and pushed either down or out. If you discover a different set of rules that work better, then you can write a book about it. And yes, it is zero-sum. It has to be zero-sum, because there is much less space in the top of a pyramid than there is in the pyramid. There's no outcome where everybody gets to be a boss.

Unfortunately, I don't think you're likely to get much informed insight on this topic on LW, given our apparent demographics. College students taking math and physics just won't have the experience. Internships aren't enough. I've only scratched the surface myself, just from studied observation during my 5 years at Microsoft. You need to talk to some 30-50 year old general managers / executives that have risen through the ranks of an organization like IBM, Lockheed, Microsoft, Citigroup, etc.

Comment by AndyWood on Bloggingheads: Robert Wright and Eliezer Yudkowsky · 2010-08-10T06:32:34.677Z · LW · GW

And who filtered that particular and exceptionally coherent set of "other people's ideas" out of a vastly larger total set of ideas? Who stated them in (for the most part) clear anti-jargon? I would not even go into the neighborhood of being dismissive of such a feat.

Originality is the ultimate strawman.

Comment by AndyWood on Open Thread June 2010, Part 3 · 2010-06-17T07:31:55.849Z · LW · GW

I was wondering indeed. That was surreal.

Comment by AndyWood on Rationality quotes: May 2010 · 2010-05-01T16:16:59.361Z · LW · GW

This seems impossible. If you respect those who "can be of no possible value" to you, and this causes others to hold you in higher regard, and if the esteem of others confers any value to you, then those you respected were valuable to you in that way.

Comment by AndyWood on Levels of communication · 2010-03-25T16:40:46.880Z · LW · GW

I think it shows that status can be contextual. If a small group begins competing over who has the worst illness, then illness becomes a de facto status marker in that gathering. It doesn't mean that illness is a global status marker among humans in general. In context, it may be no more than saying "I am the most superlative!"