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Scientists building real Evil Artificial Intelligence - to test limits of Evil

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posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 10:54 AM

This headline isn't hyperbole, or overextension, or us rearranging the idea to make it punchier: a group of cognitive science researchers are intentionally building an evil artificial intelligence. Which raises a lot of important questions: what is true evil? What are the ethics of creating evil? And how do so many people get jobs as scientists without ever seeing a scifi movie?

The work takes place at RAIR (the Rensselaer AI & Reasoning laboratory) where they're already on the fourth generation of "E", or as we will eventually come to know him, "The Dark One Who Burns All". Don't get scared too soon though - even the fourth can barely talk, he didn't have a face until the third, and it seems that so far he's less "Screaming incarnation of psychotic silicon evil" and more a text-only E(vi)LISA.

The point is to probe the nature of evil by setting up logical definitions for it, building a personality based on that, then examining the virtual beings behavior. Professor Bringsjord defines evil as "willfully causing harm to others for your own enjoyment and/or for incoherent reasons." Which means he could have saved an awful lot of research by just playing World of Warcraft, or any other online game - griefers there not only match that definition, they've dedicated their lives to elevating it into an artform.
Profiling Evil

There are no limits to evil. How can they get funding for this kind of thing?
It sounds like an easy job.

posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 03:22 AM
Hmm, very interesting. Has there been any updates about this?

posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 03:30 AM
reply to post by warrenb

What a load of #e - nice job being a scientist researching... whatever.

Tell your kids to be scientists!

posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 03:53 AM
i suppose that it makes sense, if you are going to replace religion with science it's important to work out how to define good and evil scientifically.

there is a lot of pointless research being done in universities, it's unfortunate, there are a lot of important reasearch that is going short of funding.

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 11:15 PM
SID from Virtuosity anyone?... just dont let him/it/she get near any blue green nano gel

Life Imitating Art

Decent movie when I saw it at the cinema all them years ago, what is it with scientists and doing stuff like this.

[edit on 21-8-2009 by BigfootNZ]

posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 12:04 AM
Lol I was drinking a soda and almost spewed it when I read this.

Like TPTB don't know what evil is? Have they no mirrors? That's like a shark asking another shark what biting is. :-p funny stuff.

posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 12:08 AM
Man should not experiment with evil, for he may not like what he discovers.

I read this and the first thing I thought of was the serpent (true evil), trying to convince Man to eat from the tree of knowledge (science) so that he can then have the abilities of God (developing artificial intelligence).

posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 06:07 AM
reply to post by warrenb

I'd say this experiment, while interesting, is already botched. Here you have someone giving a simple 1 dimensional definition of evil. He's actually applying limits to his own project from the start. Giving evil a limited definition prevents him from seeing the simulation grow into an increasingly vile pattern of behavior. Is it set so the program will start causing emotional harm with simple theft of property then escalate the damage done by carrying out well thought-out mass murders via wide spread fires or poisoning a community's well? If not, this project is pointless unless such things are planned for future installments which better be kept virtual.

I don't like the word evil as I feel its a propagandist term. Its all relative. Nothing truly evil will acknowledge itself as evil atleast to the point of having some remorse about it. Does this program have a side aspect to it where it lists its "personal" justification for doing and escalating said acts? This might be where the "incoherent reasons" bit comes in but I'm not sure they have it so that the program will actually give feed back as to its reasons for its actions as they occur. Though, its probably best not to push the envelope and keep within the realms of something thats easily monitored and contained I guess.

[edit on 22-8-2009 by Eitimzevinten]

posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 07:52 AM
Well, think about it....the religions have been preaching for many years that the antichrist will rise, that Satan will rule the planet, and, being as they made it all up in the first place, now they have to build it to make it come true. Just like they had to use Nazi/Alien technology to build UFOs to make us think we were being abducted by aliens and that aliens were going to invade our planet, requiring their help, of course. This doesn't surprise me a bit.

posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 08:14 AM
I have to admit I'm not too worried about "The Dark One Who Burns All". Oh, I'm sure they'll be able to create an android that says and does things they believe are evil. But it will not be true AI.

It will not be able to plan, reason, or anticipate outside its programming. It will not be able to answer anything that has not been programmed into it. It will not be able to hate, or love, or any of the things we take for granted.

This is just another group of designers trying to find 'busy work' so they can stay in the design field without having a truly worthwhile project to work on. Will they find funding? Sure they will; just look at all the anti-religion threads on ATS! Anything that might condemn religion by minimalizing spirituality has plenty of support. Will they accomplish anything? Sure they will. They'll build a fancy toy that accomplishes nothing else, proves nothing; They'll spend a lot of money in the process, and then proceed to state how it proves a myriad of things it does not.

Well, it will prove one thing though: just how naive and gullible people are.

I already know that.


posted on Aug, 22 2009 @ 11:14 AM
This is probably going to make religion obsolete imo, if the people can understand.

On the funny side, lets not put that E.A.I (Evil Artificial Intelligence) near the guys who make the Good Artificial Intelligence, or else we will have to make a reality TV show of two man made brains fighting

Also what is this??

Looks like something that came from Code Lyoko or something, like what these guys have:

posted on Aug, 23 2009 @ 02:24 AM
In order to study evil, the scientists must first define evil. So the thing they are studying is whatever they have defined evil to be.

It's a word. It doesn't necessarily mean to you what I mean when I say it to you.

I for one think that morality based on reason is better than morality based on whatever your religious leaders tell you to believe. A lot of evil has been done in this world by people who thought they were doing good, because religious fervor got in the way of reason.

I can't say I agree with this definition of evil. Just because you have a reason doesn't make it a good reason. Hurting people to gain money and power is less crazy than hurting people out of sadism, but the important part is that they are still hurt.

Same thing if programmers tried to create a saint. It would only be doing the right thing by their definition.

Maybe I shouldn't be talking about right and wrong while making posts just to get my noob count up so I can start a new thread for the writing contest. Then again I'm not hurting someone and I have a reason, so it can't be evil.

posted on Aug, 23 2009 @ 02:47 AM
That's only like 20 minutes from me. I wonder if they just let people in to play with him. Maybe I can teach him to pull the wings off of flies. 1337.

posted on Aug, 23 2009 @ 05:29 AM
God couldn't care less. It's when we get confused about what we think God cares about that is the root of evil.

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