Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Saturday, March 14, 2015

The Turing Con

Counting on general ignorance, insensitivity, and ineptitude to get away with the substitution of a counterfeit is, in plain terms, fraud. Turing with his famous Test as well as the futurological "Uploading" enthusiasts following in his footsteps who now propose a digital scan or profile of a person that could not be distinguished from that person would constitute the migration and possible immortalization of that person are all indulging in a long con. As I never tire of saying, you are not a picture of you, you are not a profile of you, you are not a scan of you, and really that should be the end of it. That the Turing Test requires an elaborately constrained scene for the Test is a sure sign of the staging of a con for anybody with the least sense, and of course we cannot even yet begin to stage the scene one would need in order to get away with the con of testing a putative "Uploaded" person. Since the sense of self is sustained by subjective, objective, intersubjective, and interospective dimensions few to none of even the most dedicated Uploading enthusiasts have begun to grapple with (probably because it hasn't occurred to any of them that they would have to) I don't expect even to be well entertained by the antics of would-be "Upload" con-artists for years to come. As for real AI-persons and personal-uploading, oh dear me, forget about it.

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