#15 Yuval Noah Harari – Homo deus

  • Indeed, in most countries today overeating has become far worse problem than famine. In the 18th century Marie Antoinette allegedly advised the starving masses that if the ran out of bread, they should just eat cake instead.
  • Half of humankind is expected to be overweight by 2030.
  • Incidentally cancer and heart disease are of course not new illness – they go back to antiquity.In previous eras, however, relatively few people lived long enough to die from them.
  • “The supreme good is the greatest happiness of the greatest number” ©Jeremy Bentham – British philosopher. He similarly maintained that nature gave dominion over man to two masters – pleasure and pain – and they alone determine everything we do, say and think.
  • To attain real happiness, human need to slow down the pursuit of pleasant sensations, not accelerate it.
  • This is the paradox of historical knowledge. Knowledge that does not change behavior is useless. But knowledge that changes behavior quickly loses its relevance. The more data we have and the better we understand history, the faster history alters its course, and the faster our knowledge becomes outdated.
  • Consider, for example, the following Freudian argument: “Armies harness the sex drive to fuel military aggression. The army recruits young men just when their sexual drive is at its peak. It limits the soldier’s opportunities of actually having sex and releasing all that pressure, which consequently accumulates inside them. The army then redirects this pent-up pressure and allows it to be released in the form of military aggression.” This is exactly how steam engine works.
  • If you want to launch a revolution, don’t ask yourself, “How many people support my ideas?” Instead, ask your self, “How many people are capable of effective collaboration?”
  • The Ultimatum Game – one of the most famous experiments in behavioral economics. The experiment is usually conducted on two people. On of them gets 100$, which he must divide between himself and the other participant in any way he wants. He may keep everything, split the money in half or give the most of it away. The other player can do one of two things: accept the suggested division, or reject it outright. If he rejects the division, nobody gets anything. Most people playing the Ultimatum Game reject very low offers because they are “unfair”. They prefer losing a dollar to looking like suckers. Sapiens doesn’t behave according to cold mathematical logic, but rather according to a warm social logic.
  • David Cope is a musicology professor at the University of California in Santa Cruz.Cope has written computer programs that composes concertos, chorales, symphonies and operas. His first creation was named EMI (Experiments in Musical Intelligence), which specialised in imitating the styles of Beethoven, Chopin, Rachmaninov etc./li>
  • One popular scenario imagines a corporation designing the first artificial super-intelligence and giving it an innocent test such as calculating pi. Before anyone realizes what is happening, the AI takes over the planet, eliminates the human race, launches a campain of conquest to the end of the galaxy, and transforms the entire known universe into a giant super-computer that for billions upon billions of years calculates pi more accurately. After all, this is the divine mission its Creator gave it.
  • Soon, books will read you while you are reading them. Amazon will never forget a thing.
  • The joke is that in the Kalahari Desert, the typical hunter-gatherer band consist of twenty hunters, twenty gatherers and fifty anthropologists.
  • For millions if years we were enhanced chimpanzees. In the future, we may become oversized ants.
  • The most interesting emerging religion id Dataism, which venerates neither gods nor man – it worships data.
  • In a free market, if one processor makes a wrong decision, others will be quick to capitalize on its mistake. However, when a single processor makes almost all decisions, mistakes can be catastrophic.
  • If we take the really grand view of life, all other problems and developments are overshadowed bt three interlinked processes:
    1. Science is converging on an all-encompassing dogma, which says that organisms are algorithms and life is data processing.
    2. Intelligence is decoupling from consciousness.
    3. Non-conscious but highly intelligent algorithms may soon know us better than we know ourselves.

    These three processes rise three key questions:

    1. Are organisms really just algorithms, and is life just data processing?
    2. What is more valuable – intelligence or consciousness?
    3. What will happen to society, politics and daily life when non-conscious but highly intelligent algorithms know us better than we know ourselves?

2019-12-08 21:21:08


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