Sunday, January 18, 2015

Blockchain Thinking: Transition to Digital Societies of Multispecies Intelligence

The future world could be one of multi-species intelligence. The possibility space could include “classic” humans, enhanced humans, digital mindfile uploads, and many forms of artificial intelligence: deep learning neural nets, machine learning algorithms, blockchain-based DACs (distributed autonomous organizations), and whole-brain software emulations. Machine modes of existence are different than those of humans, which means the need for ways to interact that facilitate and extend the existence of both parties.

Blockchains for Trustful Interspecies Social Contracts
The properties of blockchain technology as a decentralized, distributed, global, permanent, code-based ledger of transactions could be useful in managing such interactions. The cryptographic ledger system could be used for interactions either between humans or multispecies parties, exactly because it is not necessary to know, trust, or understand the other entity, just the code system.

While perhaps not a full answer to the problem of trustful multispecies interaction, and the subcase of enacting Friendly AI, decentralized smart networks like blockchains are a robust system of checks and balances. As such, blockchains are a mechanism with more leverage than other available solutions in responding to situations of future uncertainty. Blockchains could be the infrastructure for setting forth the new social contract between humans and technology, and formalizing this arrangement in smart contracts.

Mutual Coexistence in the Capacity Spectrum for Actualization
Trust-building models for interspecies digital intelligence interaction could include both game-theoretic checks-and-balances systems like blockchains to alleviate threats and fears, and also at a higher level, frameworks that put entities on the same plane of shared objectives. The problem frame of machine and human intelligence should not be one that characterizes relations as oppositional, but rather one that aligns entities on the same ground and value system for the most important shared parameters, like growth and actualization.

What we want is the ability to experience, grow, and contribute more, for both humans and machines, and the two in symbiosis and synthesis. This can be conceived as all entities existing on a spectrum of capacity for individuation (the ability to grow and realize potential). Productive interaction between intelligent species could be fostered by being joined in the common framework of a capacity spectrum that facilitates the objectives of personal, mutual, and collective growth in creating the digital communities of the future.

Adapted from: Swan, M. We Should Consider The Future World As One Of Multi-Species Intelligence. Response to The Edge Question 2015. Ed. John Brockman. 2015. 

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