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Old 01-28-2018, 12:51 PM
k9bfriender is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 11,590
I'm starting to feel I am not doing my part, not having gotten even a single ignore, and he doesn't even know my name.

Part of this is because I am not as versed in some of these subjects as others, so I don't have much to contribute to an argument about computational models or how they relate to simulating and replicating consciousness and stuff like that. I could go to Wikipedia U and get an "I read an article on it" degree, but the nitty gritty of it doesn't interest me quite enough to devote even that much time to it.

I like to think of myself as being a bit above average intelligence, and my interest in science and technology puts my knowledge of such things well above the average layman, but far below an expert. Basically, it qualifies me to, along with an additional 6-10 years worth of intensive study, actually start to understand what is being explored at the most fundamental levels.

Here's the thing though. There are experts in these fields. There are some really smart people who have devoted their entire lives to understanding these concepts, and they have much less confidence in how they will develop than Sammy, who is at best a well informed layman, does.

It's fun to explore our future, and the possibilities that may lie ahead of us. But the entire reason for that is because the future is uncertain. None of us know what is around the next bend. I think that at some point in the future, (assuming trump doesn't kill us all), we will be unrecognizable as we become more one with machines, achieve functional immortality, and spread across the galaxy and universe. As far as timeframes or precise paths that are taken to reach this state, there are many and varied, and we don't actually know which ones are viable yet.

It is hard for me to get mad at optimism. The arrogance is annoying, but it does come from a place of believing that mankind can and will achieve many great things.

I like being ignorant. It means that there are things I get to learn. As long as I acknowledge that I don't know everything and am not the expert on everything, I find that I learn something new in nearly every interaction. It is when it is assumed that one does know everything that one can no longer learn. And that is where Sammy is, he thinks he knows everything there is to know, and so refuses to learn new things.

This turns the innocence and wonder of not knowing into the contempt for learning new things that is willful ignorance. Willful ignorance leads to many irritating and antisocial behaviors, one of which is racism, which our friend has been showing signs of of late. Not the racism of hate or contempt, but the racism of ignorance. Ignorance can be cured easily, as can racism based on ignorance. Willful ignorance is not so easily treated, and really requires some level of humility on the part of the willfully ignorant in order to change.

Humility is also not something that Sammy has demonstrated. That would be the first sign of growth of him as a person.