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We're GOING To Develop Artificial Superintelligence— And It's All Because Of China

Singularity artificial superintelligence ASI AGI artificial intelligence Cold War AI Race West realpolitik foreign policy

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#1
Yuli Ban

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Spikosauropod, now known as Zox, on the KurzweilAI forums raised a very, very good point that fit in line with what I've always suspected.
 
It's actually a basic, beautiful truth now that I think of it.
 
The Singularity will happen, whether we want it to or not. And the reason why?
 
China.
 
Zox said,

China is proof that the Technological Singularity is inevitable and unavoidable. Trust China to force the global hand.

 
The reasoning?

China is willing to accept any risk in order to become powerful. This will force the rest of the world to follow suit. The world may wish to approach AI cautiously, but China is obviously throwing caution to the wind. Therefore the world has a choice between accepting China as its overlord or risking AI as its overlord. I expect the world to favor the uncertainty of AI.

 
As I've said, I've always suspected it. I said about as much in another post here...

"Scientists Argue the US Ban on Human Gene Editing Will Leave It Behind"
 
Fuck. Yes. Fuck. Yes. Yes. Yes. Fuck.
 
Seriously, when will people ever learn that banning something here only means it's not banned over there, and that's where everyone will take their business? It's why I keep harping about technological unemployment and the necessity of Vyrdism— companies that don't automate will go out of business, and not everyone can afford to be "Pro-Human Hands" when it's a basic market reality that the average consumer will choose the lower price over higher quality 90% of the time.
It's why gun control will always have limited effectiveness. Sure, it'll prevent your children from accidentally shooting you, and it'll reduce some levels of gun violence, but if someone wants to kill you, they're going to kill you. If they have to fly halfway around the world to get a gun to make it so, they will.
That's why drug laws will always fail. Sooner or later, the prohibition will crack. The first place that legalizes drugs then gets an economic boom and also gets to enjoy destroying preconceived notions about drug use. These economies thus become healthier while those that remain prohibition-friendly just hafta resort to either losing taxpayers or becoming more totalitarian in their methods.
You can't just develop something and then ban it and think it's gone away forever, or that you're the only authority on the matter. See: US in 1948 involving nuclear weapons.
 
China's probably two decades ahead of the US when it comes to genetic engineering, and that's factoring in their inferior-quality laboratories. We already know they're well ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to geoengineering.
 
The fact of the matter is, China's probably going to rule the world simply because they are not offended by so many things as we are. Things like playing God. They'll eagerly screw with genes, with artificial intelligence, with the environment, if it means they get ahead. We've been top dog for so long, we've forgotten what it takes and have even begun working to debilitate ourselves.

 
In fact, I've been saying such things for a few years now, but it's always been in reference to biotechnology and designer babies. I had never taken the time to consider that it applies for just about any futurist sci-tech.

 

It's literally Realpolitik 101— don't let the enemy have an advantage to you. Don't even let them have a theoretical advantage to you.

 

The reason why the West has not developed things like human cloning or artificial general intelligence yet is because we've controlled the world for so long that our will be done. Western leaders want to carefully control what is and isn't developed based on neoliberal, egalitarian ideals. The idea that Growth = Good, Employment = Good, Egalitarianism = Good, Individualism = Good is rooted in Western civilization, and is one reason why we're content with letting computers get faster and phones get smarter, but we draw the line at anything 'unethical.' 

 

China?

 

China goes

pimp-slap-o.gif

to our effete, liberal Western ideals.

They don't give a fuck about whether or not we'd like human cloning, ASI, or designer babies. They're going to develop these things, and if we don't follow suit, they'll eagerly use our weakness to bend us over. All we can do is meekly beg for it gentle, and hope they don't harbor any resentment for things like the Opium Wars or the Korean War.

 

But you don't actually think the West would allow ourselves to be bent over, right? 

 

That's why, as soon as it's clear that China will not respect our bans on things such as

  • Cloning
  • Genetically engineered humans
  • Geoengineering
  • Killer Autonomous Robots
  • Nuclear power

 

... Western powers will conveniently forget we pursued banning such things as well.

 

For example...

 

Remember when China continued burning coal despite our climate agreements? It raised the question of why we, the West, bothered with such an act if it meant China wasn't going to honor the commitment? What stopped China from continuing coal usage wasn't anything we did. No, we couldn't had 20 Paris Agreements and China still would've laughed at us. No, it was because China was choking under smog that they turned away from coal. They realized that solar's cheap enough to provide some energy, but they're really looking forward to nuclear power to provide what they need. 

 

Oh noes, Greenpeace will be so triggered by Chin— no one gives a fuck. Least of all, China. Greenpeace can cry until they've filled up all the dried up lakes from all that climate change they helped to cause by opposing nuclear— China won't give them the time of day. 

 

 

Same deal with AI. We've been taking it relatively slow with AI, and we've been trying to ban killer robots outright. China? Fuck that noise, they'll gladly replace their entire military with a nigh-invincible mechanized blitzkrieg of death that could crush the world in a week. 

 

 

Fact of the matter is, one of us is going to get to the Singularity first.

 

Would you rather it be the West, or would you rather it be China?


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And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#2
TranscendingGod

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Singularity will be a worldwide event. I doubt it's birthplace will be of much significance.
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The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#3
Jakob

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It's not like, BOOM, one day there's a singularity and everything becomes instantly different on January 1, 2045. No, life will go rolling steadily on, with people still being people and the world still being the world.


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#4
Yuli Ban

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Singularity will be a worldwide event. I doubt it's birthplace will be of much significance.

It'll become a worldwide event, yes, but in the very beginning, the starting point will be very important.

 

Imagine the development of atomic energy. Now imagine we skipped fission altogether and went with fusion. So in 1945, we dropped two fusion bombs on Japan, basically wiping out Hiroshima and Nagasaki and much of the surrounding areas. 

The USSR could try to steal our atomic secrets, but they only manage weak fission devices. 

 

In the time period from when we develop fusion bombs to when the Soviets develop fusion bombs, the US is basically a global hyperpower. We can end any nation's existence at will, just by dropping a few megatons on them. 

 

You could say "it's a worldwide event", but that doesn't change the fact the US is the one who made it a worldwide event.

 

It's not like, BOOM, one day there's a singularity and everything becomes instantly different on January 1, 2045. No, life will go rolling steadily on, with people still being people and the world still being the world.

Of course, that's true. What I'm saying is that, when it actually happens, the nation where it began now has a major leg up over their opponents.

 

Imagine a China with ASI on its side. There's no hope of the West catching up. Consider that AI is already a very important part of the stock market— the Flash Crash in 2010 was caused by algorithms, after all. They could use this AI to alter global stocks heavily in their favor, to the point any non-Sino stock is now worthless. 

Everything you hold dear is now subservient to Chinese— or, more accurately, Chinese Communist Party— ideals. If you don't like it, they could always send a droid your way to correct your thoughts.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#5
TranscendingGod

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^ So you think humans will still be running the show during or after the singularity?

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#6
TranscendingGod

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It's not like, BOOM, one day there's a singularity and everything becomes instantly different on January 1, 2045. No, life will go rolling steadily on, with people still being people and the world still being the world.


That boom is the apparent perception of exponential trends

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#7
Yuli Ban

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^ So you think humans will still be running the show during or after the singularity?

We'll be running the show for a while. And to be honest, that scares me more than the idea of AI rule.

 

Because imagine a CCP-Loyal AI. There's nothing we can do to stop it, today or in the future.

 

The-United-States-A-Colony-Of-China-425x

 

Y'know, the more I think about this, the more I feel America shouldn't be so eager to give up its control of the world just yet. We may not be the best nation out there (fuckin' Black Sites and invasions of poor nations), and I may have disdain for our obsession with cheeseburgers and reality TV and overall rampant consumerism, but I'd rather cheeseburgers, reality TV, and rampant consumerism than hardline conformity to the State.

 

I know, I'm basically choosing Brave New World, but if the only other alternative is Nineteen Eighty-Four...


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#8
Jakob

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It's not like, BOOM, one day there's a singularity and everything becomes instantly different on January 1, 2045. No, life will go rolling steadily on, with people still being people and the world still being the world.


That boom is the apparent perception of exponential trends

 

That boom is the singulatarians banging their heads against desks rather than actually applying trends.



#9
TranscendingGod

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It's not like, BOOM, one day there's a singularity and everything becomes instantly different on January 1, 2045. No, life will go rolling steadily on, with people still being people and the world still being the world.


That boom is the apparent perception of exponential trends
That boom is the singulatarians banging their heads against desks rather than actually applying trends.

Is that a critique? Surely you understand exponentials.

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#10
Ewolf20

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^ why are you so obsessed with becoming a technologically god or heck everyone becoming a pantheon of technological gods? 



#11
tygrus

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Wrong, they may take risks and ignore regulations but the truth is they are copying their way into prosperity.  Everything there is a poor facsimile of what we built in the west.   We gave them the blue print.


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#12
Yuli Ban

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Wrong

You are.
 

they may take risks and ignore regulations but the truth is they are copying their way into prosperity.  Everything there is a poor facsimile of what we built in the west.   We gave them the blue print.

That may have been true decades ago, but China's innovation is returning.
 
You know why there's even a meme of "China's only good at copying things?" Three letters: MAO.
 
Chairman Mao killed off all of China's intellectuals, hence why they became so intellectually deficient between the '70s and today. You may remember this as being the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Intellectuals were bourgeois agents of cultural destruction, so we had to run them through! Except, even the new proletarians expected to become the cultural supergeniuses were then systematically killed off because if they were that creative, they might get some nasty malthoughts and rebel against the Chairman. So now they're Deproletarianized and executed as Enemies of the People.

 

And what happened? Chinese innovation all but died off, and China became the World's Great Copier and the World's Great Factory. 

 

But modern China? Modern China is usually considered to be a Technocratic Socialist state. The current CCP is filled with engineers and scientists. They need bright, innovative minds that don't settle with copying stuff.

 

So tl;dr, China doesn't copy everything. If anything, they're usually the most innovative of all cultures. But Mao Zedong obliterated their ability to think straight for a few decades. Now they're returning to normal. So no more China = Copycats.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#13
Pisiu369

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Why do these kinds of regulations exist anyways? Who would want to stop all this glorious innovation and invention?



#14
Jakob

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Why do these kinds of regulations exist anyways? Who would want to stop all this glorious innovation and invention?

"glorious"

 

^^^I'll be reading that story to my young kids at bedtime if/when I have them.



#15
PyroRobot

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Why do these kinds of regulations exist anyways? Who would want to stop all this glorious innovation and invention?

"glorious"

 

^^^I'll be reading that story to my young kids at bedtime if/when I have them.

 

I wouldn't read this to myself and im 19


I am done goodbye.


#16
tygrus

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China will never ever catch the west.  Even if they go hog wild into growth, go into debt even further, their economy will reach maturity and fall into a 2-3% GDP at a level of prosperity far below what we have in the west.  

 

China will hit an economic plateau and face recessions just like we do here, that will take the wind out of their sails.  They are likely to become Japan 2.0 and they still have a billion people living in poverty after 30 yrs of growth.  Not going to happen.


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#17
Jakob

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Why do these kinds of regulations exist anyways? Who would want to stop all this glorious innovation and invention?

"glorious"

 

^^^I'll be reading that story to my young kids at bedtime if/when I have them.

 

I wouldn't read this to myself and im 19

 

I read it when I was 14/15 and had trouble sleeping that night.



#18
Erowind

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Below is an excerpt from The Years of Rice and Salt  by Kim Stanley Robinson.  I had to share this because it was the first thing I thought of when I saw this thread and I think it really captures how fantastical the Chinese are as a civilization.

 

In Egypt our pilgrim is sold into slavery; in Zanj he encounters again the inescapable Chinese.

 

As they sailed into Mombasa, the grandest harbor yet, they came on a fleet of giant ships, ships bigger than Bold had imagined possible. Each one as big as a small town thith a long line of masts down its center. There were about ten of these gigantic outlandish ships, with another twenty smaller ones anchored among them. "Ah good," said Zeyk to the zambuco's captain and owner. "The Chinese are here"

    The Chinese! Bold had no idea they owned such a great fleet as this one. it made sense, though. Their pagodas, their great wall; they liked to build big.

The Fleet was like an archipelago. all on board the zambuco looked at the great ships, abashed and apprehensive, as if faced with seagoing gods. The large chinese ships were as long as a dozen of the biggest dhows, and Bold counted nine masts on one of them. Zeyk saw him and nodded. "look well. Those will soon be your home, God Willing"


Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#19
Zeitgeist123

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lets go!!! 


“Philosophy is a pretty toy if one indulges in it with moderation at the right time of life. But if one pursues it further than one should, it is absolute ruin." - Callicles to Socrates


#20
tygrus

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Tribalism, nationalism and ideology all are huge obstacles to our success.

 

In my world, everyone would have training in the STEMs and if they cant do that work, then they work in a field that supports it heavily or the people involved.  







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Singularity, artificial superintelligence, ASI, AGI, artificial intelligence, Cold War, AI Race, West, realpolitik, foreign policy

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