Saturday, 9 April 2011

The handbook for mind-making

Short version (printed with ink you won’t mind to have it in your brain)

When you are projecting to build a mind, you should consider that if this mind will be self-conscious, will start to investigate its own nature. So you need to prepare a mind that will ask herself: what am I? Our own capacity to develop a question like this can run in two directions. The first and obvious one is: prepare a material background. In other words you need to be prepared to (or to pretend to) supply your mind with a material support. When an entity becomes self-conscious, very likely she will ask herself: what am I made of?

Consequences for not doing it? This mind will think with good reasons of being a dream. And probably she will kill herself.

Objection: we are “authentic” minds, made of true material support. Nonetheless it happens we kill ourselves for this reason.

Answer: we destroy ourselves because we are not convinced ENOUGH. With less conviction, we’ll kill ourselves more.

And the reason is the second possible direction I mentioned earlier. When a mind asks “what I am?”, it must be possible to go up the logic of this quest. In other words a mind must be able to walk through her own cognitive architecture. If you can’t ask “What I am?”, you’re not a mind. In order to make it possible, you need to have a conceptual ground to walk on. The conceptual ground shouldn’t pre-exist the mind walking on it. The same walking of the mind could produce her own conceptual ground. But a cognitive or intelligent system who at least doesn’t generate its own conceptual ground, couldn’t ask the question.

Objection: why a pure intelligence should be bother to ask herself the essence of her own nature? Why not doing something else, more practical, more intellectual challenging.

Answer: well, strange enough for a pure intelligence to deal with pure theoretical question, isn’t it?

But the point is another. A form of intelligence self-conscious is made by her self-exploration of her won complexity. If you can’t go up stream your own complexity, you won’t be able to represent yourself to yourself: you can’t be self-conscious if you don’t ask yourself whether you are self-conscious. And the way to walk on this conceptual ground is to build it by your own. Through the making of the ground, you make experience of what it means to be a mind and therefore being able to question yourself.

So if you want to build a mind, you need to produce a creative form of intelligence, able to pose conceptual questions about herself.

The most complicated system, who wouldn’t investigate its own complexity, wouldn’t be that smart, would it?

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