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Hyperion > Real Life Cybrid?

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message 1: by terpkristin (new)

terpkristin | 3448 comments Came across this story today on Engadget first, then later The Verge.

Quoting Engadget: "A Team of Russian researchers are building a conceptual mind-transfer android, and we're definitely not talking about Ice Cream Sandwich. However bizarre, their goal is to help mankind achieve immortality using a combination of humanoid robots and interstellar space travel to get away from a dangerous and overcrowded planet -- but most of the needed technology seems so far off that we could probably power cycle the world's slowest Linux computer a million times before we see any of it. One prototype includes the torso of an android that will one day house a a computer rig that would be theoretically capable of acting as a personal proxy -- essentially, a place to upload "human souls.""

Links: Engadget and The Verge

Creepy.


message 2: by aldenoneil (new)

aldenoneil | 1000 comments I saw that, too.

I just wouldn't want to be the first; I imagine a constant scream spilled out in 1s and 0s. Once the tech gets ironed out I might try it out.

Near-term, I'm about ready to pull the trigger on Lasik.


message 3: by terpkristin (new)

terpkristin | 3448 comments I, for one, look forward to the ability to get rid of my human body. ;) If I were a horse, I'd have been sent to the glue factory LOOOOOOOONG ago.

That said, I wouldn't want to be the first.


message 4: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments The only thing that is eerie about that is the sensationalism of the wording of the news article, such as the usage of the words:

'essentially, a place to upload "human souls." This absolutely insane über-ambitious project is the stuff of science fiction'

They're basically talking about using androids in outer space. I highly doubt that it would become a sentient being, or it could replace a human being, and definitely not as a place for a "soul" to be transferred to. We can't even figure out what a soul is now.


message 5: by Anne (new)

Anne | 336 comments See Mind Children (ISBN 0674576187) published in 1988. Non fiction. Hans Moravec is the author.

I don't think anyone has identified what a soul is but uploading the contents of one's mind, perhaps.


message 6: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments I placed an order for a used hardback. It sounds fascinating. Thanks, Anne. I'll have to see what the definition of "uploading the contents of one's mind" means according to this book.


message 7: by Anne (new)

Anne | 336 comments Aloha wrote: "I placed an order for a used hardback. It sounds fascinating. Thanks, Anne. I'll have to see what the definition of "uploading the contents of one's mind" means according to this book."

I hope you enjoy it.


message 8: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Thank you, Anne. At the very least, it's interesting information.


message 9: by terpkristin (new)

terpkristin | 3448 comments Interesting.

Back when I thought I was going to be a doctor, I took some graduate classes in neurobiology and physiology. Even then it seemed that the ability to create anything resembling the power of the brain would be a significant task, both conceptually and energetically.

That said, who among us hasn't thought about the ability to "download" one's mind to a jump drive or the like? I know I've often felt that it would be useful to have a backup of what's in my head about work, in case I get hit by a bus or something.

Further, the idea of having "androids" in space capable enough of being able to deal with...various issues that could come up without telerobotic presence. It's an interesting idea, but would require such a mapping of skills it would almost in some respects resemble sentience.

Plus the picture of the "android" in the article is mega-creepy. ;)


message 10: by Anne (new)

Anne | 336 comments terpkristin wrote: "Interesting.

Back when I thought I was going to be a doctor, I took some graduate classes in neurobiology and physiology. Even then it seemed that the ability to create anything resembling the pow..."


A very significant task. That's not stopped people from trying. :)

Along the way they are finding ways to build better prostheses for humans lacking certain abilities so there is some cost effectiveness to the research. Most of us already treat our computers and phones as extensions of our brains.[OMG, the hard drive is fried]. And the little phones we now carry used to take up half a large building and were far less useful - once upon a time.


message 11: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments This reminds me of the issues raised by Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, one of the main one being empathy. Even if an android can contain the transferred concepts from the human brain, can an android feel empathy? Empathy is what makes us be kind to each other. Since I don't have time to write a long post this morning, here is my review which discusses the issue of empathy as it pertain to the book and robotics. We've seen examples of people who lacked empathy, such as sociopaths.

http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...


message 12: by Warren (last edited May 17, 2012 07:26AM) (new)

Warren | 1536 comments Robert J Sawyer- Mindscan Some issues-
So after the transfer which one is the real "You"?


message 13: by Mike (new)

Mike Betts (michaelbetts) | 256 comments Aloha's point makes me think. So much of who we are, how we act and feel, is controlled by biology, i.e. hormones. Even if you could somehow download your brain into a computer, it seems unlikely you'd retain your personality at all.


message 14: by Aloha (last edited May 17, 2012 09:03AM) (new)

Aloha | 919 comments I agree. If downloading the conceptual part of your brain is possible, the entity most likely would have some serious flaws, becoming either psychotic or self-destructive. Just a little imbalance of the chemicals can cause people to commit murder or suicide.


message 15: by terpkristin (new)

terpkristin | 3448 comments Nevernind the chemical parts, there are also the parts that science doesn't yet know exactly how it works but may not have much chemistry, such as inspiration and random association. I thought about that today as I was solving a problem at work and realized the current problem had a connection to a problem from 2 years ago that I hadn't thought about in those 2 years. Even if I could download my brain, I'm not sure the pure contents would have made that association. I'm also reading Imagine by Leherer right now so I guess it's been on my mind.


message 16: by David Sven (new)

David Sven (Gorro) | 1582 comments terpkristin wrote: "Nevernind the chemical parts, there are also the parts that science doesn't yet know exactly how it works but may not have much chemistry, such as inspiration and random association. I thought abou..."

To further confuse matters - the human heart has regulatory functions that are independant of the brain - sort of like its own cpu.

Which raises further questions - are things like intelligence and will merely the sum total of our physical electro chemical reactions? Do we think and then produce brain waves - or do our brains dictate what we think? If so, do we really CHOOSE or exercise our will. If all our decisions are a result of "undirected" and "unintelligent" physiology - how do we know we are thinking the "right" thoughts. Is anything we think or decide truly based on logic if they are just the result of the "lucky dip" from the soup between our ears?


message 17: by Alterjess (new)

Alterjess | 318 comments Even if an android body could account for the effects of hormones and internal organs with their own nervous systems (gut, heart), would they ever be able to factor in the interaction with our bacterial microbiomes? Just copying the data in a brain wouldn't be nearly enough to recreate a full person able to interact in an environment.

I'm starting to think this is why the Cylons eventually just went with organic humanoid bodies.


message 18: by David Sven (new)

David Sven (Gorro) | 1582 comments Jess wrote: "I'm starting to think this is why the Cylons eventually just went with organic humanoid bodies.
"


And don't forget Daleks! I always wondered why Daleks maintained their organic component. This clears it up.


message 19: by Warren (new)

Warren | 1536 comments Yep. Whether it biological or a cyborg replacement
The road block to immortality is how to
transfer the current "you" into the new "you."
The Scifi authors I read kind of gloss over this part.
Ideas?


message 20: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments The problems make going back to the method of the early SF book Frankenstein seem the most palatable. :oD


message 21: by Warren (new)

Warren | 1536 comments The good news- http://www.popularmechanics.com/scien...

Or as far a Frankenstein 2.0 goes its called
- blastocyst complementation "Scientists have found they can create chimeric animals that have organs belonging to another species by injecting stem cells into the embryo of another species."

Unless your a Young Frankenstein in which case its pronounced….


message 22: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments It's Alive!!! If they can grow another brain from the donor brain, but the brain will be like a newborn's brain, it would be like an identical twin but born at another time.

Mind Children: The Future of Robot and Human Intelligence came in the mail today. I skimmed through it. I was expecting a lot of mathematics, but it's easier to understand than a philosophy book. It seems he's thinking that the advantage would be to bipass all the biological complications, hence any weakness of the human body. His hypothesis is that a mind might be basically a mathematical abstraction.



I also found an interesting article on what makes a human:

http://www.mind.ilstu.edu/curriculum/...

My personal feeling is that the human mind is more than a mathematical abstraction.


message 23: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments BTW, I'm not getting notifications from this thread, but I'm getting it from other S&L threads. Anybody else have this problem?


message 24: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments It's funny how reading varying books end up tying in to each other. I've been into reading books by Steven Pinker, who advocates evolutionary biology and computational theory of the mind.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_P...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolutio...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computat...

Hans Moravec in
Mind Children: The Future of Robot and Human Intelligence also advocates evolutionary psychology and computational theory of the mind in his support of his hypothesis that we are able to transfer the mind to a robot body.


message 25: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Mind Children is so good, thorough and easy to understand that I went and purchased his more current book, Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind.


message 26: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments So far, what I've read seems more like a programming of if...then.... to instruct the robot. But what about the human quality of having intuition and making creative leaps? I wonder whether this book will answer that question.


message 27: by Mark (new)

Mark Catalfano (Cattfish) Bah, what is intuition but a smaller, more intricate set of if/than loops?


message 28: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments But what about creative leaps?


message 29: by Mark (new)

Mark Catalfano (Cattfish) creative leaps, loops, pun somewhere.... I got nothing

Ah, but are there such things as "creative" leaps, or are they simply one person leading up the logical (if/then) chain faster than other people can follow?


message 30: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments LOL. You know, that might be true. I read the part regarding programming the robot with "pleasure" and "pain" as a conditioning mechanism for learning, basically increasingly doing things that registers as "pleasure", and eventually stopping doing things that register as "pain." There's also "world simulation" in which the robot takes in data from the world and quickly goes through possible scenarios and goes toward the scenario that registers the most "pleasure".

To that end, they are also working on increasing the robot's ability to sense its environment. With a robot being able to quickly go through scenarios in its world simulation and come by the best scenario, it may make better decisions than a human.


message 31: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments But first, we have to work on Goodreads, which fried and I ended up posting 3 times. It won't let me delete the extra posts. LOL.


message 32: by David Sven (new)

David Sven (Gorro) | 1582 comments Aloha wrote: "But first, we have to work on Goodreads, which fried and I ended up posting 3 times. It won't let me delete the extra posts. LOL.">

Could you repeat that please?



message 33: by Warren (last edited May 22, 2012 06:04PM) (new)

Warren | 1536 comments "Paralyzed woman moves robot with her mind"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogBX18...

When extrapolated this bring up all sorts of interesting possibilities .


message 34: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments I'm caught in an infinite loop, which makes me loopy.

David Sven wrote: "Aloha wrote: "But first, we have to work on Goodreads, which fried and I ended up posting 3 times. It won't let me delete the extra posts. LOL.">

Could you repeat that please?"



message 35: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Thank you, Warren. This is great! People are usually ready to be apocalyptic and scared. It's nice to see a video on the beneficial usage of robots. They're already being used in manufacturing, although not prevalent in the homes. Most homes now have a personal computer, so that idea may not be impossible.

Warren wrote: ""Paralyzed woman moves robot with her mind"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogBX18...

When extrapolated this bring up all sorts of interesting possibilities ."



message 36: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Whoo! Got rid of my infinite loop.


message 37: by Aloha (last edited May 23, 2012 04:05PM) (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Warren, I'm reading Beyond Boundaries: The New Neuroscience of Connecting Brains with Machines and How It Will Change Our Lives and it gives great information regarding BMI (Brain Machine Interface) research in an entertaining and easy to understand way.


message 38: by Warren (last edited May 23, 2012 05:12PM) (new)

Warren | 1536 comments Aloha wrote: "Warren, I'm reading Beyond Boundaries: The New Neuroscience of Connecting Brains with Machines and How It Will Change Our Lives and it gives great information regarding BMI (Brain Machine Interface..."
Thanks. Side note. MIT started a program to work that.
Initially they were just supposed to do the computer part. Harvard would do the medical side. Lately MIT students have been coming up with a lot of stuff thats technically medical. I'm continually amazed with what a MIT grad and a case ofRed Bull will produce over a long weekend.


message 39: by Warren (new)

Warren | 1536 comments Satirizing MIT's newest major (Biological Engineering), hackers representing "Stepford Labs" at the MIT Department of Biological Engineering installed a display case full of "enhanced" simulated body parts in MIT's Infinite Corridor on 2/7/10. ;-}

http://hacks.mit.edu/Hacks/by_year/20...


message 40: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments LOL! Thanks, Warren. I'm attached to an iPhone. You can call me Aloha-oid.


message 41: by Aloha (last edited May 24, 2012 07:11AM) (new)

Aloha | 919 comments I found an interesting article on BMI. It's scholarly and is harder to understand than the book I'm reading.

http://www.cns.nyu.edu/events/spf/SPF...

The visual receptive field shows stimulation when the brain is focusing on moving the tool. Since tool usage is a mark of advance brain development in evolution, it makes me wonder about the importance of art, in learning how to think visually. This also applies to playing musical instruments.


message 42: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments I'm at the part in Beyond Boundaries: The New Neuroscience of Connecting Brains with Machines and How It Will Change Our Lives in which he discusses how research showed how the sense of self being extended. The sense of self extends to the tool that you're used to using daily every day. This is relevant knowledge to the robot/mind connection.


message 43: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 919 comments Humans Becoming Robots, Robots Becoming Human

http://techgnotic.deviantart.com/jour...


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Books mentioned in this topic

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (other topics)
Frankenstein (other topics)
Mind Children: The Future of Robot and Human Intelligence (other topics)
Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind (other topics)
Beyond Boundaries: The New Neuroscience of Connecting Brains with Machines and How It Will Change Our Lives (other topics)
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Authors mentioned in this topic

Steven Pinker (other topics)