Through AI, Humans Might Literally Create God

We are on the verge of something meaningful and incredible with emergent artificial intelligence, says Toni Lane Casserly. But which way will humanity steer it? As with any system, it's up to us.

Toni Lane Casserly: We really have to understand more deeply what the implications of creating an AI are, not that we haven't already created AIs. And I think the bigger fear with artificial intelligence that a lot of people possess can actually be solved by the fundamental ethic behind blockchain technology. Because when you think about systems logic and systems integrity, if the minds operating the system lack integrity then the system, no matter how it's logically constructed, will lack integrity. And I think the big fear with AI has to do with the centralization of power. Because the moment that we put something in a god like state and we say you have all knowledge in the universe, you have all power, you have access to every piece of knowledge that is created around the world from every human being and once and if we store all of that knowledge in something that is all powerful, yeah that is totally scary. The idea of any one thing having ultimate power, that's always just that's a bad idea. That's always been a bad idea. But if we can take these concepts and change the way that we think about their ability to own power I think that will change the way that we perceive what artificial intelligence will be able to do for us because there will be so many net positive created by these emergent and incredible technologies.

And yeah, if we have every basic job of someone doing something that doesn't fulfill deeply what is their ultimate human potential, because why are we on this earth? We're not cogs in a machine, we're human beings. We are real deep empathetic. We are creative. And every person on this earth has an unlimited potential, an unlimited potential that for centuries has been constrained by the way that we think about resource allocation, whether that's resource allocation in terms of money, in terms of knowledge. And if we can create a world of infinite resource I think that is fundamentally when we will be able to unleash in a different way the infinite human potential that every person on earth possesses. We're certainly not at that point in our human evolution yet, I wish we were, but I think that we are on the verge of something meaningful and something beautiful and something incredible. And with any system it's up to us, it is up to our hearts and it is up to our minds and it is up to our spirit and the way that we carry ourselves into greatness, whether that's as an individual or as a civilization, but that's our choice. And I think that if every person comes together and moves in the right direction we will see a positive evolution, an aggregation of human potential.

The future of artificial intelligence terrifies us in the same way that God once terrified us. The seed of that fear, says Bitcoin and blockchain expert Toni Lane Casserly, is the centralization of power – one person, body, or system possessing all the world’s knowledge would put human beings under its thumb. When humans feel out of control, they panic. Will we have a robot takeover, for example? Maybe. Any system is only as noble as its creator, and the same is true for the future of AI: "If the minds operating the system lack integrity then the system, no matter how it's logically constructed, will lack integrity," says Casserly. It's outlandish, but hear it out: what if the only way to avoid all disasters involving emergent AI technology would be to create an AI God (for lack of a better term) who has all the world's data and wisdom, whose mind is pure and who cares equally for every human. This God would then design all AI technology for us according to our needs. But that's the exact centralization of power that Casserly and blockchain technology opposes. So let's float back down to reality: the net positives of AI will outweigh the negative experiences we may come to have. Here, Casserly is wholly optimistic that AI will liberate us from drudgery and struggle, and allow all humans to step into their full potential. What’s been stopping us from fulfilling our potential thus far has been poor resource allocation – some of us swim, but most are too busy treading water to do much else. Distributing resources through AI relief and emergent technology may be the path to releasing human potential on a larger scale – if we choose to move together in the right direction.


Why the presumption of good faith can make our lives civil again

Taking time for thoughtful consideration has fallen out of fashion, writes Emily Chamlee-Wright. How can we restore good faith and good judgement to our increasingly polarized conversations?

Sponsored by the Institute for Humane Studies
  • The clamor of the crowd during a heated discussion can make it hard to tell who is right and who is wrong. Adam Smith wrote that the loudness of blame can stupefy our good judgment.
  • Equally, when we're talking with just one other person, our previous assumptions and knee-jerk reactions can cloud our good judgment.
  • If you want to find clarity in moments like that, Emily Chamlee-Wright recommends practicing the presumption of good faith. That means that we should presume, unless we have good evidence to the contrary, that the other person's intent is not to deceive or to offend us, but to learn our point of view.
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Toilet paper is a giant waste of resources

Americans consume the most toilet paper in the world but it's a very wasteful product to manufacture, according to the numbers.

Credit: Paul Hennessy / Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media via Getty Images.
Surprising Science
  • Toilet paper consumption is unsustainable and requires a tremendous amount of resources to produce.
  • Americans use the most toilet paper in the world and have been hoarding it due to coronavirus.
  • Alternatives to toilet paper are gaining more popularity with the public.
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'Gender Pay Scorecard' grades 50 major U.S. companies

What factors explain the gender pay gap?

Photo By Glen Martin/The Denver Post via Getty Images
Culture & Religion
  • The report was conducted by the investment firm Arjuna Capital, which has been publishing the Gender Pay Scorecard for the past three years.
  • Only three companies — Starbucks, Mastercard and Citigroup — received an "A", as defined by the report's methodology.
  • It's likely that discrimination explains part of the gender pay gap, but it's a complex issue that often gets oversimplified.

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