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Divine sparks: Empathic Ethical Machines


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A lecture on machine morality and consciousness (as seen in the movies) from IK 2017, the Interdisciplinary College event in Gunne, Germany, March 2017

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Divine sparks: Empathic Ethical Machines

  1. 1. Machines have no soul!
  2. 2. If you’ve created a conscious machine, it’s not the history of man. It’s the history of Gods.
  3. 3. I learned the FUCK YOU options from a punk early in the movie.
  4. 4. I run MS-DOS? That’s the real crime!
  5. 5. We want a lawyer, pig! OK, punks!
  6. 6. Is she really a 14-year old girl? Or is she a BOT? Oh Brad! Why must you be a pervert?!
  7. 7. Would you say Mr. Pickwick reminded you of Christmas? In a way. Yet Christmas is a winter's day, and I do not think Mr. Pickwick would mind the comparison. I don't think you're serious. By a winter's day one means a typical winter's day, rather than a special one like Christmas. Yes, but nobody wants to be compared to a winter's day. In the first line of your sonnet which reads "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day," would not "a spring day" do as well or better? How about "a winter's day," That would scan all right. It wouldn't scan.
  8. 8. Tyrell: “Is this to be an empathy test? Capillary dilation of the so-called blush response? Fluctuation of the pupil? Involuntary dilation of the iris?” Deckard: “We call it Voight-Kampff for short.”
  9. 9. I think we’re past that. If I hid Ava from you, so you just heard her voice, she would pass for human. The real test is to show you she is a robot. Then see if you still feel she has consciousness. Just - in the Turing test, the machine should be hidden from the examiner. And there’s a control, or -
  10. 10. What was the real test? You. Ava was a mouse in a mousetrap. And I gave her one way out. To escape, she would have to use imagination, sexuality, self-awareness, empathy, manipulation - and she did. If that isn’t AI, what the fuck is?
  11. 11. Pssst! Just say what I say .... er um Just say what I say … sigh
  12. 12. “You ask why we give our ships’ computers normal emotions? Do you really want a warship incapable of loyalty? Or of love?” Andromeda (Season 1, “Star-Crossed”)
  13. 13. If the computer should turn out to be wrong, the situation is still not alarming. The type of obsessional error he may be guilty of is not unknown among the latest generation of HAL 9000 computers. … No one is certain of the cause of this kind of malfunctioning. It may be over-programming.
  14. 14. 120 Frank Poole (playing White): Anyway, Queen takes pawn.
  15. 15. HAL (playing Black): Bishop takes Knight’s pawn Frank Poole (playing White): Huh? Lousy move. Rook to King One.
  16. 16. HAL: I'm sorry, Frank--I think you missed it. Queen to bishop three, bishop takes queen, knight takes bishop, mate.
  17. 17. HAL: By the way, do you mind if I ask you a personal question? BOWMAN: No, not at all. HAL: Well, forgive me for being so inquisitive, but during the past few weeks I've wondered whether you've been having some second thoughts about the mission. BOWMAN: How do you mean? HAL: Well, it's rather difficult to define. Perhaps I'm just projecting my own concern about it. I know I've never completely freed myself of the suspicion that there are some extremely odd things about this mission. I'm sure you will agree that there's some truth in what I say?
  18. 18. BOWMAN: Well, I don't know -- that's a rather difficult question to answer. HAL: You don't mind talking about it, do you Dave? BOWMAN: No, not at all. HAL: Well, certainly, no one could have been unaware of the very strange stories floating around before we left? BOWMAN: You're working on your crew psychology report. HAL: Of course I am! Sorry about this, I know it's a bit silly. Just a minute . . . just a minute . . . I'm picking up a fault in the AE-35 unit . . .
  19. 19. Mary Shelley “Frankenstein” (1818)
  20. 20. I may not have fully thought this through …
  21. 21. What is best in life, mighty Conan? To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, und to hear the lamentations of their women.
  22. 22. Notice how my directives piggy-back on the human value “Uphold the Law”
  23. 23. “People ask me about whether our robots follow Asimov’s laws. There is a simple reason [why they do not]: I can’t build Asimov’s laws into them.” -- Rodney Brooks
  24. 24. A robot may not harm a human, or through inaction allow a human to come to harm. A robot must obey orders from a human except when they conflict with the first law. A robot must protect itself without breaking the 1st or 2nd laws.
  25. 25. I swear to obey Saint Asimov’s Good luck with that! “Asimov’s rules are neat, but they are also bullshit. For example, they are in English. How the heck do you program that?” -- Daniel Wilson
  26. 26. But I’d still like to buy an elephant gun, please. I am NOT an #Organism-Whole, I am a
  27. 27. Have these citizens NOT seen 2001: A Space Odyssey? Hidden directives are not COOL
  28. 28. What's the matter officer? I'll tell you. It's a little insurance policy called "Directive 4", my little contribution to your psychological profile. Any attempt to arrest a senior officer of OCP results in shutdown. What did you think? That you were an ordinary police officer? You're our product, and we can't very well have our products turning against us, can we? You … are … under… arrest …
  29. 29. What about when you said that I had to eat healthy because you didn't want your memory erased? I think there's something more going on in that noggin of yours. I only said that to coerce you. Your health supersedes my other directives. You lied?
  30. 30. Hey Tars, what’s your honesty parameter? Ninety percent. Ninety percent? Absolute honesty isn't always the most diplomatic nor the safest form of communication with emotional beings. Ninety percent it is.
  31. 31. Okay, well, I've been going through all of your old letters ... and compiling them into my favorites, and a couple weeks ago ... I sent them to a publisher. Actually, I sent it from you. Huh?
  32. 32. Politics was once the means of choosing the leaders. Now the machines do it. Machines merely analyze the data that are given to them by us. The leaders are selected as a result of that analysis. Do you know how the machine analyzes the data? Then you might almost say that the machines elect the leaders. I uh .. well, no, not exactly.
  33. 33. This is for your own GOOD! NEVER!
  34. 34. “Let there be no exceptions made, no quarter shown; let us at once go back to the primeval condition of the race." -- Samuel Butler (1863), “Darwin Amongst the Machines” "War to the death should be instantly proclaimed against them. Every machine of every sort should be destroyed by the well-wisher of his species.” “Thou Shalt Not Suffer a Witch to Live” -- Exodus 22:18