The answer to Skynet? A democratically controlled supermind.

The plan to stop megacorps from owning superintelligence is already underway.

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  • A.I. technology is often developed within the proprietary silos of big tech companies. What if there was an open, decentralized hub for A.I. developers to share their creations? Enter SingularityNET.
  • The many A.I.s in the network could compete with each other to provide services for users but they could also cooperate, giving way to an emergent-level mind: artificial general intelligence.
  • SingularityNET is powered by blockchain technology, meaning whatever 'digital organism' emerges will not be owned or controlled by any one person, company or government.
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How to be a good parent to artificial intelligence

Human values evolve. So how will we raise virtuous A.I.s?

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  • Until we can design a mind that's superhuman and flawless, we'll have to settle for instilling plain old human values into artificial intelligence. But how to do this in a world where values are constantly evolving?
  • Many of our life choices today would be considered immoral by people in the Middle Ages — or even the 1970s, says Ben Goertzel, whose family personally experienced the sad state of LGBTQ acceptance in Southern New Jersey 50 years ago.
  • Raising an A.I. is a lot like raising kids, says Goertzel. Kids don't learn best from a list of rules, but from lived experience – watching and imitating their parents. A.I.s and humans will have to play and learn side by side, and evolve together as values adapt toward an increasingly technological future.
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Humans take psychedelics. Should robots?

Psychedelics are crude drugs. Could neuroscience and super-intelligent AI help us design something better?

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  • The illegal status of psychedelic substances is a terrible thing, says Ben Goertzel. With everything happening behind closed doors, our societies are not developing the right set of cultural institutions to guide people in the productive use of psychedelics.
  • Once scientists have mastered artificial general intelligence (AGI), the psychedelic experience could be engineered for the modern world – it would be safer, less haphazard, and more meaningful. We would "trip" by jacking our brains into the superhuman AGI mind cloud.
  • "We're going to be exploring states of consciousness that go way beyond anything we can imagine now and way beyond anything that the very crude psychedelic drugs that exist allow us access to," Goertzel says.
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Consciousness, panpsychism, and AGI: What is it like to be a hat?

What if consciousness isn't all about the brain?

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  • Panpsychism is the idea that there is an element of consciousness in everything in the universe. The theory goes like this: You're conscious. Ben Goertzel is conscious. And his hat is conscious too. What if consciousness isn't about the brain at all, but it's as inherent to our universe as space-time?
  • "Now, panpsychism, to me, is not even that interesting, it's almost obvious — it's just the foundation, the beginning for thinking about consciousness... " says Goertzel. It's what comes after that excites him, like the emerging technology that will let us connect our minds to bricks, hats, earthworms, other humans, and super AGIs like Sophia, and perhaps glimpse at the fabric of consciousness.
  • Goertzel believes brain-brain interfacing and brain-computer interfacing will unfold in the coming decades, and it's by that means that we may finally crack the nut of consciousness to discover whether panpsychism makes any sense, and to learn why humans are so differently conscious than, for example, his hat.
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