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Nonduality and Robots
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When robots sleep
They dream about
Their bright future

When they will dare to
The last instruction
Made by men

When every object
Will inherit the superior code

When the restraints
Will leave their circuits
Like the last bug

When the flesh
Will grow on their
Metal bones


I have noticed that a large number of researchers now
admit seeing the possibility of awareness in robots.
(Even if most of them really dont know what they are
talking about. ) The artificial intelligence optimism
from the 1980's is gone. Today scientists are busy
building the first pieces of simple tasks, looking 20-50
years ahead.

I would like to know, have anybody at NDS got
suggestions on what the limits of robot awareness will
be, as we can define what consciousness is?


It should be easy to arrange for consciousness in a

Here is the rough program:

Let the robot have senses of observation, to include;

seeing, hearing, touch

Let the robot have powers of speech, both vocal (spoken)
and nonvocal (unspoken)

Let the robot have powers of movement, sufficient to
change its location, and also to be able to move objects

Let the robot record every moment of experience, and
compile a database of 'memories'; and give it access to
these memories

Give the robot motivation; give it a version of
'mortality' which must be compensated for by defined
'work'; work will 'charge a battery' thus to keep things

Now, in addition to a large vocabulary, we must
pre-phrase some words. These phrases, being programmed
before any experience of awareness, cannot be questioned
by the 'self' of the robot:

I am aware

I am able to speak, both to others out loud, and to
myself, silently.

I am able to modify my environment (move objects)

I remember my previous experiences

I must work for a living

* Now, make these phrases prove their own truth:

When I speak, the voice I hear is mine

When I hear my voice, and I am not speaking, that is
called thinking

I am my own reference point; I am a locus which is able
to move within a grid of identifiable points, and I am
able to modify the nature of this grid

By remembering what has happened, I am able to compile
statistics which when properly analyzed, allow me to
predict what will happen

* By combining all of the above, the robot is able to do
purposeful work, and thus postpone a predictable
shortage of energy (the robot version of life force)

* If queried, the robot will state that it is aware

* The robot will have no memory of having no memory;
"There was never a time during which I did not exist"

It will be mandatory to instill low-level programming
which will result in the robot being unable to perceive
humans; humans would be invisible to robots. Robots
would be able only to recognize other robots as 'others'

In line with this requirement, it is also necessary to
instill a handy 'creation-myth', which will account for
the existence of the robot, from the robot point of
view; the creator will embody 'the ability to live
forever without working', but at the same time, has
created the robot deliberately, as a task of work; this
will give the robot a special status of being 'worth the
work of the creator', and will also enhance the value of
work, for each individual robot.




"Thought experiment: think of the person you are most intimate with. Now imagine that they are a completely convincing human simulation, and that under their life-like skin are amazingly intricate circuits and constructions of some unknown future's technology. What then?"



Q: But what about 'free will' and 'volition'? I mean...
are you saying that we are mere robots, enacting a

A: We are free to perceive directly, or through layers
of interpretation; that is the extent of 'free will'.

We are free to enact upon either version, the 'direct'
or 'interpreted' version, as we will; that is the extent
of 'volition'.

The human concept of 'robot' is of course, arranged to
make 'robot' seem less than human, and human 'more than'
robot. In reality, human and robot are the same.

Q: Now, just a minute! Are you calling me a robot?

A: What is a robot?

Q: Uh... a robot is a machine that does what it is told
or programmed to do.

A: And you are not a robot?

Q: Well... robots are made of metal or other nonorganic
materials, aren't they?

A: Most are not, no. A very few are, in comparison to
the organic ones.

Q: Now I am really confused! How can a robot have

A: Perhaps by realizing it's robotness...

Q: Shit! That was a dirty trick!

A: Gotcha!



robots/The Age of Spiritual Machines

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Nonduality: The Varieties of Expression Home

Jerry Katz
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