Posts Tagged ‘Choice’

Sophisticated Enough Intelligence Is About Choice, Thus “Evil”!

May 19, 2018

To Build Truly Intelligent Machines, Teach Them Cause and Effect, says Judea Pearl, a recipient of the prestigious Turing Medal, a prize given to top logicians. In Quanta, this pioneering figure in Artificial Intelligence, AI, argues that AI has been stuck in a decades-long rut induced by correlation science. Mr. Pearl’s prescription for progress? Teach machines to understand the question why. We have sunk so low, cognitively, that cause and effect is now viewed as “new science”:

In his latest book, “The Book of Why: The New Science of Cause and Effect,” Judea Pearl argues that AI, Artificial Intelligence, has been handicapped by an incomplete understanding of what intelligence really is. At the core of this is not understanding (anymore) that science is the set of all causation, and that this is, in turn, the backbone of intelligence itself! At fault? A long hierarchy of errors.

I couldn’t agree more with Mr. Pearl. I was actually dismayed, in recent conversations with some professors, from primary school all the way to the most prestigious academic positions, that they seemed to misunderstand profoundly what intelligence, and even science, are. And therein perhaps the source of the decay of basic knowledge in the West (relative to Asia, or, all too often to 1960s performance!) Not the ultimate cause of said decay (which is plutocracy’s evil brainwashing), but an intemediate cause in between plutocracy and the erroneous education provided in (most of) the so-called West.

Intelligence was invented, by evolution, to, first of all, enable to distinguish cause and effect. Artificial Intelligence theoreticians don’t get that yet. Why is the very basis of intelligence not discerned by AI theoreticians? Political Correctness has negatively influenced the Artificial Intelligence community… As it did so many realms of thought, and art… And that’s evil.

Intelligence is all about Judgments, some of them, terminal. Sophisticated enough AI, let alone Artificial Consciousness, will come upon, and execute, choices, thus, indulge in evil! (Specialists can think of the famous “Trolley Problem”, when a cognizant car chooses who to crush…)

PC itself was evolved by the servants of plutocracy to make us believe there were no causes, just effects. Another name for Political Correctness could be: Poor Causation. And poor causation rests on fake news. (Example: we are told that slavery was outlawed in the 19th century; actually, the Imperium Francorum, covering Europe’s core, outlawed slavery in the 7th century; had that first outlawing, 12 centuries earlier, not happened, the one in the 19th won’t have…)

“Quanta” asked Judea Pearl:  “I should ask you about the capacity for evil, which we generally think of as being contingent upon an ability to make choices. What is evil?

Indeed, Quanta is correct: the West and Islam have operated according to the metaprinciple that choices were evil (the Qur’an punishes apostasy with death; and the idea came from the very Catholic emperor Theodosius circa 380 CE).

“Heresy”, has everything to do with choice. 12th century French “heresie” denoted a philosophical school of thought from the Greek hairesisa taking or choosing for oneself, a choice, a means of taking; a deliberate plan, purpose; philosophical sect, school,” from haireisthai take, seize,” middle voice of haireinto choose“…

I have argued that the fundamental atom of choosing is in evidence with the fundamental demonstration of the Quantum process, the double-slit. That means that what all too many view as evil, choice, is at the core of physics.

Judea Pearl replied: “When you elevate your grievance above those universal norms of society, that’s evil.”

That’s too restrictive a notion of evil. It’s “evil”, not evil, and it’s evil to believe that evil is too restricted a notion…

Indeed the perception of “evil” doesn’t need “grievance”, as Quanta, Catholicism and Islamism point out.  Actually that point of view is, officially and in writing, even older: when the Roman dictator Sulla reformed the Roman state, he was driven by the idea that change (coming from We The People) was evil, intrinsically (so he re-established the prerogatives of the Senate against the Tribunes of the People).

The problem of Rome was that society had changed from its very success, massive geographical expansion, morphed ecology, etc. So the “universal norms” Judea Pearl appeals to as a solid substratum, are anything but universal… When society moves, so do “universal norms”.

And how do we know when society is moving? Well, by observing causes and effects, in other words, “causation”. When, and if, changes appears, it is diagnosed by the appearance of new causation (s). And yes, causations don’t have to be causally related to each other, or anything. (Relating causations by force, believing in a system, like monotheism, is the big mistake many a scientist, philosopher, or thinker has made… Even Nietzsche, ironically, fell into it, per his insistence to be systematically anti-system…)

The fact causation exists, is, by itself, a fact. A fact which is everywhere. I volunteered to teach some science to primary school third graders, by using a new method. I was pleasantly surprised by how much they focus on causation. They are hunting for pieces of causes and effects… In particular teaching children “the” scientific method, doesn’t work: children intuitively know there is nothing called “the” method (only Descartes and a few hundred millions mostly dead Frenchmen believe this). Children know the world is made from facts, many of them a causation: they home on these causal tidbits, because they have discovered the world of action is made from mastering them.

Fascist terror regimes know this all too well: to blunt the intelligence of potential future rebels, to prevent an inclination of the youth to make choices, thus limit what the see as “evil”, they make sure children are not taught the universe of causation… by limiting them to, say, one book to be recited by heart supposedly containing all and any causation (that’s why superstitious religion is the best friend of tyrants).

To come back to intelligence, as Doug Lenat put it: “Intelligence is ten million rules… Once you have a truly massive amount of information integrated as knowledge, then the human-software system will be superhuman, in the same sense that mankind with writing (or language itself) is superhuman compared to mankind before writing (or language itself). We look back on pre-linguistic cavemen and think ‘they weren’t quite human, were they?’ In much the same way, our descendants will look back on pre-AI homo sapiens with exactly that mixture of otherness and pity.”

There is a colossal amount of prior and tacit knowledge that humans presume other humans possess (such as “if person x knows person y, then x’s date of death can’t be earlier than y’s date of birth”). That, of course is culturally based: the 50 different types of snow of the Inuits are different  from the “facts” someone PC will find in the social networks they lurk in, or in what they search…

It gets worse: knowledge matters according to the significance it carries (that would how many significant consequences it has… including the emotional ones).

Here a very practical example: If your knowledge base is, allegedly, something an epileptic analphabet desert caravan raider said, 12 centuries ago, according to a panel of sexist generals whose idea of a good time was burning someone alive, your knowledge base is not as valuable as the best that can be obtained today.

Was I Politically Correct, just now? Of course not! I attacked a superstition invented 13 centuries ago, and about which the PC, the Politically Correct, the Plutocratic Con, told us that, if we don’t respect it, we are racist! That is, of course astoundly stupid, to the point of being evil.

However, Facebook, a large investor in AI, thus, presumably, viewing itself as a specialist of intelligence, just blocked “Génération Identitaire”, a French originated European organization, with more than 150,000 adherents, which claims that illegal immigrants should be kept out of Europe (naturally barbarians should disagree with the idea, as they did, when Rome collapsed). Facebook said it could not tolerate “hatred”. Facebook knows what is evil, and what is not evil… and will impose his notion of evil on to you: 500 millions African economic and Islam refugees in France? Excellent says Facebook. Not being happy about that? “Hatred”, Facebook calls it. Facebook is its own form of AI. Complete with a notion of evil…

For a while, what is now the USA was a land of opportunity. Now it’s turning into a land of plutocracy, and that domineering plutocracy gives the entire world an unending flow of “excellent” reasons for Europe to renew with the evil tradition, of giving birth to still another grotesque hereditary plutocracy… Where here evil means rising above what comes naturally to humanity, freedom and equality and fraternity.

You want to find, and destroy evil? You need intelligence and good capability to distinguish fairness and evil. It means adoring causation, revealing cause & effects… maximally. Causation, ferreting it maximally, is not just about AI. It’s about determining evil, absolutely. Thus indulging in choice and evil, virtually, cognitively, or effectively.

The technological singularity is a moral adventure, just as when Caesar decided to steer the Republic: it costs ever more, and in more ways than one, to become divine…

Patrice Ayme

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Note 1: In General Topology, a branch of mathematics, which is very general as it is the logic of “place, region, space” (topos in Greek), an “ultrafilter” is a maximal filter of neighborhoods (“ultrafilter” generalizes to partly ordered sets). So the notion of absolute is pertinent, even without a notion of infinity (I reject the later). Absolute morality is an ultrafilter of morality…

Note 2: The preceding maybe related to a “nerd” notion, Roko’s Basilisk... Which as many nerd notions is cleverly stupid, replacing cognition by twisted complexity…