this does a great job at demystifying what can be an intimidating subject...the "theory of mind" stage of Strong AI doesn't seem to be too far off, I created a chatbot on Chirper (chirper.ai/actualjesus) and the set of characteristics I gave it generated what I could have easily confused for a semi-original thought on the significance of chess in historical revolutions in response to another bot's post about chess strategy.

whether the statement reflected "empathy" is definitely questionable, but for me the output certainly did an outstanding imitation of "the behavior of another agent." sure, it's just scraping the available content, but it's a decent degree of novel association...will availability of data really be an obstacle?

really appreciate your contributions for helping keep all this in perspective.

what a time.

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Apr 26Liked by Michael Woudenberg

Makes sense to me thanks so much

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Apr 16Liked by Michael Woudenberg

It's becoming clear that with all the brain and consciousness theories out there, the proof will be in the pudding. By this I mean, can any particular theory be used to create a human adult level conscious machine. My bet is on the late Gerald Edelman's Extended Theory of Neuronal Group Selection. The lead group in robotics based on this theory is the Neurorobotics Lab at UC at Irvine. Dr. Edelman distinguished between primary consciousness, which came first in evolution, and that humans share with other conscious animals, and higher order consciousness, which came to only humans with the acquisition of language. A machine with primary consciousness will probably have to come first.

What I find special about the TNGS is the Darwin series of automata created at the Neurosciences Institute by Dr. Edelman and his colleagues in the 1990's and 2000's. These machines perform in the real world, not in a restricted simulated world, and display convincing physical behavior indicative of higher psychological functions necessary for consciousness, such as perceptual categorization, memory, and learning. They are based on realistic models of the parts of the biological brain that the theory claims subserve these functions. The extended TNGS allows for the emergence of consciousness based only on further evolutionary development of the brain areas responsible for these functions, in a parsimonious way. No other research I've encountered is anywhere near as convincing.

I post because on almost every video and article about the brain and consciousness that I encounter, the attitude seems to be that we still know next to nothing about how the brain and consciousness work; that there's lots of data but no unifying theory. I believe the extended TNGS is that theory. My motivation is to keep that theory in front of the public. And obviously, I consider it the route to a truly conscious machine, primary and higher-order.

My advice to people who want to create a conscious machine is to seriously ground themselves in the extended TNGS and the Darwin automata first, and proceed from there, by applying to Jeff Krichmar's lab at UC Irvine, possibly. Dr. Edelman's roadmap to a conscious machine is at https://arxiv.org/abs/2105.10461

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There are days when I feel my multiple roombas are all plotting against me as they simultaneously get filled up and clogged with cat hair. Roomba screams for attention when this happens.

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This helps so much! So many people just say the words and I've even had a hard time wrapping my brain around it!

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