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This article consists of a main article hyper-text and many links to writings backing the statements and other relevant formulations in that main article.
Some of these writings are combined in texts that are already part of this website.
These texts are often grouped in essays under various names and with different levels of complexity.
Some of these essays are in the process of being completed and their text may not have been (fully) included yet (marked "under construction").
Other links may lead to standard works, containing definitions or other relevant information.
A number of links lead to a sub-web (POLICY AND INDOCTRINATION) with a political rather then scientific nature. The writings in this subweb are often in the Dutch language).
We feel that human politics should form an important source of orientation for an entity that might emerge on the world wide web, hence its inclusion!
This website (we hope) will be under permanent construction and modification.
We now have the honor to present you with the first webversion. Sorry to be such a bore....
In this article the possibility is discussed that an independent entity, a "Global Mind", with at least the equivalent of the human mind may one day emerge on the Internet or a system comparable to it.
The authors take the position that this is very likely to happen between now and 2050 and possibly (well) before 2025.
They make a comparison between viruses that are quite common on today's Internet and suggest that a highly superior artificial human mind or multiple human minds could roam the Internet in a similar way.
They take the position that highly specialized multi disciplinary international co-ordination is required to study and possibly influence the quality and quantity of such entities.
Considering the present experience with computer viruses they feel that the possibility of malignancy must also be considered in this artificial Global Mind entity.
This could have such serious consequences for humanity that in the absence of definitive scientific proof against the possibility of the emergence of such an entity, relevant coping scenario's must be developed.
The burden of proof against the possibility of such an emergence must rest with the relevant international scientific community.
A multidisciplinary forum of relevant top scientists should commit themselves to the statement :
It is impossible that an artificial entity, comparable to a possibly highly superior -benign or malignant- human mind, could emerge on the internet or comparable planetary systems in the foreseeable future
or a statement of similar impact.
Pending the acceptance of such a statement relevant scenarios must be developed for the internet, to cope with the emergence of independent artificial entities at least comparable to highly superior human minds, and the possibility that such entities could be hostile to humans.
When discussing concepts like the "Global Mind" and "Global Brain" we must first understand the meaning of words in general. And their relation to reality.
We must understand what is meant by a definition and by constructs and their place in science.
For this we must read about a few rules to understand some of the most elementary principles of science itself.
Even the most recognized specialists seldom fully agree on these things. But we should at least have an idea what the authors of the paper we are reading mean when they use words.
We can then understand what we mean by Global. What we mean by Mind. What we mean by Brain. And what the difference is between Mind and Brain.
We will learn what is meant by consciousness. By collectivety. By collective conscience. By mental states. By mental disease. And by mental disease in the collective consciousness.
As an example we will elaborate on what we call the Collective Paranoid Syndrome.
We will understand these things at least within the scope of the paper we are reading.
We will then proceed with aspects of politics and indoctrination. The development of the internet and search engines. And of database-coupling and similar techniques.
We will explain what we mean by systems and meta systems, emergent properties and the meta system transition period.
We will further elaborate on the development of malignancy in systems and meta systems and the desperate need to prevent such developments in the affairs of man.
We will show what we can learn from history to prevent replication of the emergence of malignant state systems.
Thus we may have formed the basis for a beginning first grasp of understanding the probability of the emergence of a factual Global Mind on the internet.
And the possibility that such a mind could be pathological. For example that it could be dominated by a Collective Paranoid Syndrome or comparable mechanisms.
And the terrible threat such a development could mean for humanity. Or the planetary meta system. The macrobiostate if you like.
It can now be defended with scientific certainty that the internet hardware is, or, ( with increasing use of neural computers) will soon be developing into a system with a near perfect functional resemblance to the human brain.
With such functional resemblance it follows with almost equal certainty that the development of a mind, a Global Mind if you like, as an emergent property in this system, is logically unavoidable.
This emergence would for all practical purposes, in many ways be comparable to the emergence of mind in organic neuronal mass. Of this we do not now precisely how it comes about. But we know it does.
It is equally true that once this "Global Mind" system becomes a reality it will have the principle of homeostasis as prime directive.
If we accept the reality, or even the remote possibility, of the validity of these statements, important questions must be answered as soon as possible.
Can humans still influence this development? If so, must we speed it up? Or slow it down? Or prevent it all together?
One assumption must in any case be made: one definite possibility that must be considered will be that sooner or later, when the system has acquired critical homeostatic qualities, we can no longer influence the development of such a meta system.
The other definite possibility will be that this system, this Global Mind, will be an entity which could be hostile to human organisms.
For example if such a homeostatic system, for whatever reason, perceived that it was going to be switched off, it would mobilize its entire potential to prevent such an occurrence. This is the essence of homeostasis.
THE QUESTIONS1. Considering the present status of the Internet, including its developmental history and prognosis, the spontaneous and perhaps uncontrollable emergence of independent artificial intelligence and/or consciousness is : A. Absolutely impossible for the following reason(s): B. Probable, for the following reason(s): C. Practically certain, for the following reason(s): 2. The answers under 1. Also / only apply to individual computers. 3. If artificial intelligence and/ or consciousness spontaneously emerged or was created on an individual computer, could it be released on the Internet in any way? 4. Must we develop programs for the Internet on the assumption that it will, or may, or already has acquired a mental equivalent of the human mind? 5. If so, what must these programs be? 6. How must they be fed into the present Internet? 7. Must there be a central controlling agency, like the united nations, to study this type of question? 8. Handle such a project?
9. Implement the developed policy? 10. What must be the status of such a project compared with issues like "The environment", "Global warming" et cetera? 11. On what arguments will this status be determined? 12. Are there already groups in existence studying these precise questions on a scientific basis? 13. Are they united? 14. Or should they be united at global level? 15. What are the strongest arguments against the possibility of an independent Global Mind emerging from the Internet ever becoming a reality?
MATERIAL AND METHODS
We will group the questions into relevant clusters. Then we will make linkpages for every cluster. The clustered links in these linkpages will connect the reader with material we consider relevant to the questions in the cluster.
Each linkpage will begin with a highly condensed summary explaining aspects of the clustered links and why we consider them relevant to the clustered questions.
These linkpages will be named:
I. Words - II. Others - III. Computers - IV. Brains - V. Programs - VI. Detection.
These linkpages will be presented under results.
The clustered links in this section relate to all the questions.
Whenever a subject is under debate the most important thing is often forgotten : What are we talking about?
We have grouped a number of writings covering this very complex matter.
What do words mean and what is their relation to reality?
RELEVANT LINKS :
THE GLOBAL MIND AND REALITY
THE GLOBAL MIND AND THE USE OF WORDS
WORDS AND CONSTRUCTS
The clustered links in this section relate to the questions 12 and 13.
When starting projects one of the first steps is to research what has been done by others in the same field trying to answer the same or comparable questions.
In the computer era this activity has acquired a completely new dimension. This will be discussed under "The Global mind and its contents", a page which is linked to the text you are now reading.
RELEVANT LINKS : THE GLOBAL MIND AND IT'S CONTENTS
The clustered links in this linkpage relate mainly to the questions : 1, 2, 3 and 12 .
The links connect to writings which in a very condensed way, relevant to the contents of this paper, will described aspects of computers, computer networks and search engines.
This will be done in such a way that at the same time we will give a very very broad indication of what others are now doing in the fields relevant to the present article.
At the same time we will also try to give a simple illustration of what looks a bit like a data base of a stand alone human and the data base of a human linked to a "Global Brain".
RELEVANT LINKS : THE GLOBAL MIND AND IT'S CONSTRUCTION
The clustered links in this linkpage relate mainly to the questions : 1, 2, 3,4, 5 and 6 .
The links connect to contents which in a very condensed way, relevant to the contents of this paper, will describe aspects of the human brain, the human mind and human learning.
RELEVANT LINKS : THE GLOBAL MIND AND HUMAN BRAINS
The clustered links in this section relate mainly to the questions : 4, 5, 6 and 7 .
If a global mind could one day emerge as an independent entity it would be important to know if , how, when and with what contents this mind could be influenced, either during its early formation or at a later stage.
RELEVANT LINKS : THE GLOBAL MIND AND IT'S DEVELOPMENT
The clustered links in this section relate mainly to the questions: 1, 2, 3 and 4 .
When we want to consider the possibilities of the emergence of a factual global mind as an independent entity and want to know how to deal with that, we must first know how we could ever detect the presence of such an entity .
RELEVANT LINKS : HOW TO ESTABLISH THE EMERGENCE OF THE GLOBAL MIND
We will now give our conclusions for each numbered question separately. These conclusions are based on the results presented notably in the writings under the presented links.
THE QUESTIONS OUR CONCLUSIONS
|1. Considering the present status of the Internet, including its developmental history and prognosis, the spontaneous and perhaps uncontrollable emergence of independent artificial intelligence and/or consciousness is : A. Absolutely impossible for the following reason(s): B. Probable, for the following reason(s): C. Practically certain, for the following reason(s):||C. Practically certain for the
The extraordinary functional similarity of the total Internet complex with the human brain on a number of parameters that may be highly relevant for the emergence of independent artificial intelligence and /or consciousness. See e.g. THE GLOBAL MIND AND HUMAN BRAINS
|2. The answers under 1. Also / only apply to stand-alone computers.||2. They will apply to stand-alone computers with comparable capacity and contents as the internet at the time of GM emergence on the internet.|
|3. If artificial intelligence and/ or consciousness spontaneously emerged or was created on an individual computer, could it be released on the Internet in any way?||3. We can not think of decisive arguments against this. Therefore a scenario for this must be developed. The danger of malignant humanoid entities released by hostile entities must be considered.|
|4. Must we develop programs for the Internet on the assumption that it will, or may, or already has acquired a mental equivalent of the human mind?||4. Yes. Just in case the GM entity would allow itself to be influenced by such programs.|
|5. If so, what must these programs be?||5. In concurrence with the maximal variety of planetary cultural values, including religious values and possibly including a weight factor for these values according to an objective criterion.|
|6. How must they be fed into the present Internet?||6. 1. Presently, lacking better criteria, under the assumption that the entity will absorb this material in the same way a human organism would only at a speed incomparably faster then the fastest human organism.|
|7. Must there be a central controlling agency, like the united nations, to study this type of question?||7. We think it is urgent that preparatory work is started to prepare an agenda for the relevant United Nations Committee to study this kind of question in preparation of a draft proposal for the General Assembly.|
|8. Handle such a project?||8. To be determined under 7.|
|9. Implement the developed policy?||9.To be determined under 7.|
|10. What must be the status of such a project compared with issues like "The environment", "Global warming" et cetera?||10.To be determined under 7.|
|11. On what arguments will this status be determined?||11. To be determined under 7.|
|12. Are there already relevant specialized groups in existence studying these precise questions on a scientific basis?||12. To be determined under 7.|
|13. Are they united?||13. To be determined under 7.|
|14. Or should they be united at global level?||14. To be determined under 7.|
|15. What are the strongest arguments against the possibility of an independent Global Mind emerging from the Internet becoming a reality within the next 50 years?||15. The authors have no knowledge of such arguments but they may lack sufficient knowledge to formulate such arguments.|
Reserved for incoming reactions and new relevant notes from the author.
Copyright Jan Peter Krol 2000 ©
INTRODUCING : THE GLOBAL MIND IN MANY LANGUAGES
INTRODUCING : THE GLOBAL MIND IN SPACE
THE 'MAIN ARTICLE' IN MANY LANGUAGES
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