Is it true, living dreams, living spirit

The dream of the artificial mind

Basic building blocks of an artificial mind

Who does not know them, these pictures: half real, half unreal, sometimes exhilarating, often rather threatening, frightening. You want to run away, but you can't; one is paralyzed. You want to scream, but your voice fails, stays silent. The disaster is very close. And then again these wonderful situations, with dear people, maybe with the dearest person you always wanted to be with. Bright landscapes, colorful, also bizarre, grotesque, fantastic houses, cities, imaginative clothes…. our dreams.

Some don't take it very seriously, laugh at it, suppress it; others see the dreams as a language in which our inner being wants to communicate something to us. They try to read dreams, seek to interpret dreams. It is often assumed that our dreams do not come out of nowhere but draw their inspiration and energy from what concerns us in everyday life. A kind of echo of everyday life, not 1: 1, but creatively changed, distorted, exaggerated, exaggerated, with fantastic proportions that would not occur in normal everyday life. And it particularly seems to be the emotions that form a specific drive energy for dreams, and here the repressed or unresolved emotions: fears that drive us or even torment us, traumatic experiences, or unfulfilled longings, needs, suppressed urges that are actually there , but for whatever reason cannot be lived out openly. All of them should then do their mischief in the underground of our inner being, torment us in dreams, torment, or even make us happy.

Biological brains

Now we know today - at least we can know if we want to - that dreams can be located in the brain, in the biological brain, that marvel of around 100 billion cells that are inside our heads, which on the one hand are largely mechanically unconnected , but constantly exchanging messages with one another, sending and receiving energy impulses, converting chemical energy into electrical energy, and vice versa. This brain is real, a possible object for observers to measure, to conduct experiments. A biological brain enables a biological system to convert, transfer and modify environmental events (and system-specific events) into electrochemical states. Whatever happens in our environment outside of the brain, certain sensors (other cells) register energetic states and events and transform them into electrochemical states of the brain, so that they serve the brain as a model of a world that is the brain itself has never seen nor will ever see. The biological brain doesn't know anything about the world outside. It just receives a constant stream of energy impulses from all possible sources, which it did not create itself but always finds there.

The amazing thing about the biological brain is that it controls its owner, the surrounding body, in the world beyond the brain with almost dreamlike certainty through precisely that world that it actually does not know.

Anyone who has ever tried to program a small network of perhaps only 100 artificial neurons for a specific task knows that this can be difficult. If you increase the number, it becomes more and more difficult to the point that soon you simply no longer know how to program such artificial neurons as a self-learning system, especially not when it comes to such complex services as those that are there biological brain is just doing that at every moment.

To this day, we do not have a detailed answer to the question of how the biological brain controls all these complex tasks, or has learned it or continues to learn to control a body through its everyday life.

On the other hand, we know - we can know! - that the biological brains of the genus Homo sapiens did not fall from the sky. They weren't just there. They go through highly complex generation processes, which in the case of ontogenesis (individual growth process of an organism from a fertilized cell to a full-grown body) perform the miracle of growing from a fertilized cell to a galactic cell system of around four trillion cells, of which the 100 billion are brain cells only form a small subset.

These four billion cells - our body - appear to us to be highly organized, work-sharing, with several complex communication systems, and are subject to constant change. If this in itself is a breathtaking process, which we only understand initially, then the picture is almost out of joint when we consider that these four trillion body cells themselves turn into a phylogenetic (creation process of a population as a population) history of more than 3 billion years are embedded.

As we (can) know today, today's format of the biological brain and the associated biological body is only a snapshot. Research back into the past has brought together more and more facts based on which we must assume that all known biological bodies (including the brains they contain) slowly, gradually, from a single cell over the course of approximately 3.8 billion years - after all almost 2.8 billion years ago - have evolved from the simplest cell assemblies to increasingly complex cell assemblies. The current shape of the biological brain and its body is therefore an extremely lengthy history of searching and learning in constant interaction with the surrounding world, from which we know that this world - our earth - has also constantly changed and is still changing.

What we see of biological species today is only the survivors. Many millions of species have failed on the way from yesterday to today; the cost of finding the right figure was very, very high; and the search is - strictly speaking - not over yet. As long as the earth continues to change - and homo sapiens meanwhile helps vigorously - the genus homo sapiens will have to continue to strive for a suitable adaptation. And if our astrophysicists are right, the swelling of the sun will make it so uncomfortable, even hostile to life, on earth in about 1 billion years that we would do well to either bring the sun's physical processes under control or life on earth to be able to settle elsewhere in the known universe. This means that the pressure to adapt extends almost infinitely. Who can say today what a biological living being will look like in the distant future, if there will still be biological life at all.

Brain dreams

If it is amazing how the biological brains are able to control their bodies in a world that they do not know themselves, it is actually at least as astonishing that these brains, trimmed to fit reality, can assume a state that we are sloppy call it dreams. When dreaming, elements of reality are blurred with fantasy figures, similar to creative thinking when it comes to finding something different, something new beyond the known. The proximity to the abnormal, the pathological, the delusional, as the average person feels, is always fluid. Genius and madness have always been considered to be closely related. In the biological context of brain states, there is a large space, a continuum of possible states, where it can indeed be difficult to distinguish between healthy and sick.

The creative, the fantastic, the ingenious, these are brain states that increase survivability to a certain extent. Without the ability to deviate significantly from the familiar and familiar, there would never have been biological life. And in modern business life, the innovative strength of a company is becoming increasingly important. If everyone has the same capital and the same technology at a certain point in time, then the company that wins is the one that has the greater creativity and the better innovative strength. This is true at all levels.

In dreams, in dreams, in the fantastic, in the creative, we encounter a fundamental ability of the biological brain to break through the given, the known, the familiar in the direction of something new. On the genetic level of the body's inventions, we have the counterpart of the genetic self-reproduction mechanism, which is allowed to search for new structures in a mixture of given information and chance, which undermines a simple continuation at the root. While in populations of homo sapiens there is always a tendency that privileged subsets (a lot of money, a lot of power, ...) try to secure and shield their condition, and thus undermine and endanger the dynamics of a population, in the realm of biological information and Cells radically different laws: never the same again! Standstill is doom! Something new is needed! Cooperations are everything! Whoever cooperates lives! On the other hand, forms have repeatedly formed over the course of billions of years that could not only survive for millions of years, but many hundreds of millions of years. But even these survivors - as we can see today - are permanently endangered. The sharks, for example, as successful as they have been so far, we as homo sapiens are about to put an end to them for good. We can destroy very well.

So our dreams, our fantasizing thinking, are not the worst thing we have. Of course, as always, in the right dose, in constructive cooperation with all other conditions. We know from the past, however, that not a few ideas saw the light of day only through radical otherness, that their creators were often not rewarded for this; on the contrary, they were mocked, were the weirdos, or impoverished, or were even persecuted and burned. Many people are uncomfortable with the new, it scares them. The new seems threatening to the known and familiar. The new creates resistance because one believes that life can only be preserved if one preserves it as one has got to know it up to now. Both are true. And at the moment when something new is emerging, nobody really knows whether it will help us or lead us into the abyss. The future does not come for free. The future of life has its price, namely all previous life. Anyone who saves incorrectly here in the wrong place will not have anything in hand tomorrow because the old has disappeared and something new has not been developed.

The word mind

Anyone who uses the word spirit in their mouth immediately finds themselves in difficult terrain. The German term Geist corresponds to many other terms, also in other languages; Historical references to past millennia can easily be constructed, and comparisons and variations are possible across or across many cultures. In this situation, if you take it seriously, you could - if you followed up all these traces - enumerate hundreds of pages, and enumerate and enumerate them further, and in the end you might not know what of the many to take seriously .

I therefore take the liberty of starting with a current question to selectively pick up certain key points from history, which in the light of this question can be identified as possible answers. If this seems too one-sided or even wrong, you are cordially invited to correct this misjudgment in the form of constructive comments.

The starting point arises from today's science and philosophy, which is not detached from the past, but is largely a result of the preceding centuries and millennia. Even if it is not always expressly stated, today's forms of thinking are shaped by the previous thought processes and intellectual debates. This appears most clearly tangible in the form of modern logic and mathematics as the new language of the inquiring mind, as well as in modern engineering, which, with the help of precisely this mathematics and new, comprehensive knowledge of materials, is able to think of new constructions and then also to implement them, such as they weren't even possible in dreams before. Seen in this way, the fantastic has a certain explosive power compared to the familiar and everyday, but it is not absolute: the fantastic also draws its content from what is given and therefore has a limited horizon into what is possible. It is a real more, but not an absolute more! Seen in this way, success in the new pushes something new, but every time has its limits of thought, which expand or narrow, depending on how far the overall situation develops.

Mind and structure

In this novelty of the present we were able to learn, compared to earlier, that the biological life has a structure inside, that the body is organized in distinguishable subsystems, that these subsystems are further subdivided into sub-areas that ultimately consist of the aforementioned approx There are billions of cells that work together to form what we call our body. Ultimately, we were able to penetrate even further into the inner structure of cells, into their complex structure, which finally ends in the concept of the molecule, which is broken down into atoms, which in turn…. up to now, modern physics has penetrated deeper and deeper into the structure behind the structures; an absolute end is not yet in sight. So far, we have used energy as the basic concepts and, equivalent to it, matter, and quantum physics was developed as a coherent concept, which projects a certain order into this unknown.

A key message from all of this is that we can identify elements at all levels that are interrelated with others, and that these interactions of the elements of one level result in phenomena that are more than the individual elements can be recognized for themselves . We call such phenomena emergent because we have not yet come up with anything better. Ultimately, we largely lack a real understanding of these phenomenal wonders. And these emergent phenomena are not only dynamic in nature as an event, as a process, but they are also of a structural nature: Atoms form molecular structures under certain conditions; Under certain conditions, molecules form ever more complex arrangements that seem to know no limits upwards in the direction of increasing complexity.

The structure of the cell seems to occupy a special position here. A cell can take care of itself, it can also multiply itself and thus further distribute its structural knowledge. This process contains random elements so that the current structural knowledge can also generate variants each time it is passed on, which further utilize the space of possible structures. Furthermore, a cell can enter into any cooperation with other cells and can adapt its own behavior (its functionality) due to its flexible transmission; in this sense, every single cell has a certain ability to learn.

When you consider the many different ways in which cells have organized themselves up to now (just think of the four trillion cells in our body that specialize in a breathtaking way in our bones, in our muscles, in the various organs, in the brain etc. have trained, form working groups, react dynamically to changing conditions, etc.), then we have to - if we are very honest - keep our mouth open in amazement and admit that we hardly understand anything about all of this. And when you then know how, for example, a Max Planck Institute for Biophysics has been working with tremendous effort as a recognized actor on the global research front for decades to decipher cell structures and their dynamics and, despite everything, not everything has yet been understood, then one can become very humble, downright reverent, before this immense miracle of biological nature as a phenomenon of nature.

Mathematically, a cell can be viewed as an input-output system that can modify its internal states. But that is the basic term for a system that is capable of learning. This means that the material from which biological systems such as plants, animals and thus also Homo sapiens are composed, already in its basics consist of adaptive systems; These combine to form increasingly complex structures, all of which are capable of learning, until we ascribe to animals, especially homo sapiens, in addition to their obvious ability to permanently change structures, what we call intelligence, spirit, cleverness, reason, etc. .

Is spirit everywhere?

In the preceding centuries and millennia, people's gaze was in a certain way captured by the typical macro phenomena of spirituality that we could observe in Homo sapiens. Without a deeper insight into the structure of human bodies, abilities such as feeling, thinking, reasoning, speaking, and forming social communities appeared to be something very special at first, which only belongs to homo sapiens.

To the extent that humans were then able to learn, with the help of the developing modern empirical sciences, how observable behavior is based on the properties of a body that has the complex structure of cooperating, adaptive subunits outlined above, to the extent that we could not only do that observable behavior can be traced back to the enabling (transcendental) structures, but we also began to understand that all other biological systems were largely identical to Homo sapiens, consisted of the same material, and that, if you look closely, you will find these other biological systems Systems can also observe behavior that can be described as learning.

At first it was the human-like apes, but the more you researched and did not obscure your view from the start with prejudice, the more you discovered the direct parallels and began to understand that learning can be traced back to individual cells. In this respect, the genus homo sapiens does not represent the completely different one, but is to be classified in the continuum of biological forms and occupies a position therein that is conspicuous, but not delimiting. Today we can and must establish that everything biological feels, perceives, notices, remembers, reacts, changes. The differences lie in the complexity and the level of training.

If one accepts this (and these are the facts that everyone can check and check for themselves), then one must formulate the hypothesis that everything that was transported in the past under the terms spirit, spirituality, intelligence, understanding, reason, etc. , is ultimately to be located in the observable behavior of biological systems - especially homo sapiens - and thus ultimately in the properties of biological cells and their almost inconceivable ability to cooperate.

So if we want to understand what spirit is, then we have to understand what this basic ability to learn of every cell and then of all cooperating cells is all about. Because a cell, as an input-output system capable of learning, in turn only consists of millions of molecules. One does not see any spirituality in a single molecule, and yet one has to realize that a molecule is at least one input-output system that has an observable behavioral function that is not completely deterministic, but depends on previous events and conditions Behavior can change! Even a molecule is therefore rudimentary in terms of system theory! And one cannot escape this basic ability to learn, no matter how deeply one penetrates the structure of matter.

Emergence as a metaphor

As noted above, however, it is not the immersion into the smaller and smaller that unconditionally reveals the most interesting phenomena, but in fact it is the increasingly complex cooperations of cells that make increasingly interesting properties and behaviors visible that one of the individual components cannot be regarded as such. In interaction, in cooperation, the cells reveal a hidden potential, the inner beauty and power of which can trigger a shiver. Seen in this way, the spirit, the spiritual, does not appear as something individually isolated but as a continuous phenomenon of the biological, which in turn is part of the entire universe. In this perspective, spirit is an emergent phenomenon that shows itself across everything biological; Depending on the complexity of the structure, less and simpler or more and more complex, richer.

Perhaps it is no coincidence that the understanding of spirit in ancient Greek philosophy with the word pneuma was based on the breathing of the living and understood the breath, also as wind, air as the life principle of the whole cosmos. The spirit breathes through everything and is especially visible in the (biological) living. Ultimately, the modern image of science in the 21st century says nothing else: in everything that is biologically living, a design principle becomes visible for us, which allows more and more spirituality to be recognized and practiced in ever greater complexity. This spirituality is a continuum that runs through all of matter. Seen in this way, spirit appears as a co-criterion of the known energy-matter.

Artificial mind

If one has felt one's way forward, can one raise the additional question to what extent one can reproduce such mental phenomena based on biological, adaptive substrates with other artificial substrates? As it stands, two components have to be considered simultaneously: (i) the phenomena of the mind as they show up in observable behavior, and (ii) those artificial systems that can produce this behavior.

Experimental psychology is particularly responsible for talking about behavior (point (i)), for observing and measuring behavior. It combines more than 100 years of experience and theory building under one roof. Using the example of intelligence measurement (e.g. IQ quotient), psychology already showed about 100 years ago how one can measure something that one does not know - intelligence - with great accuracy, and on this basis one can use a variety of interesting models could work out great predictive power (a real theory in the sense of a philosophy of science seems to be yet to come).

The question arises, what about point (ii), the artificial systems that are supposed to produce this behavior? In terms of requirements, it is clear that these potential artificial structures must be capable of learning. It is not clear what is meant by artificial.

In computer science, there is the term artificial intelligence (KI) in German and the term artificial intelligence (AI) in English. There is nowhere in the hundreds of articles and books on the subject a basic definition of artificial for both terms. The only thing that is clear is that non-biological materials were used as building materials for those systems that were predominantly used in the context of AI or AI. What they all had in common was that it was possible to realize mathematically usable state variables with which an observable behavior could ultimately be generated. Recently, with the advancement of knowledge about the capabilities of cells and the technology of the use of biological cells, one can also find hybrid constructions in which one connects non-biological materials with biological materials, allows them to interact, in this way even more fundamental To be able to use properties of biological substrates. These hybrid structures are characterized by the fact that they cannot reproduce themselves as a whole like the biological substrates involved.

In the absence of a generally accepted definition of artificial, I will take the position in this post that artificial systems of the artificial spirit type do not use any biological materials. Only then is there a clear experimental starting point as to whether the observable phenomena of the spiritual can be reproduced in this sense by an artificial spirit.

Artificial and biological - lower bound

We know from a biological spirit that it appears in the context of a growing and aging biological body, but that as a property of this body it is not only involved in ontogenesis, but also in phylogenesis: the respective appearance of a biological spirit changes over the course of population history. In order to fully approximate the peculiarity of the biological mind, strictly speaking, an artificial mind would also have to have a comparable integration into a population history of artificial systems. So if one wants to answer the question of whether an artificial spirit is possible, then one would have to define an equivalent to the biological population history.

There are different approaches within computer science to implement such an idea. In essence, these approaches mean that those artificial structures that are supposed to show mental phenomena in observable behavior must also develop - analogous to biological structures (relevant catchwords here are e.g. genetic algorithms, genetic programming, evolutionary programming). Since these approaches become very complex very quickly, are very time-consuming and resource-hungry, they have so far only been used rarely and only in special contexts on complex structures. But they do exist.

Intermediate result: the materials of our artificial mind are not biological materials and those structures that are ultimately supposed to show phenomena of the spiritual are once again integrated as structures in an evolutionary process that - analogous to biological phylogenesis - enables a kind of artificial phylogenesis of the artificial mind.

In the case of biological systems, we also know that the ability to reproduce as a prerequisite for phylogenesis is based on the fact that the elementary building blocks of a biological system have both an individual ability to reproduce and at the same time an elementary ability to cooperate! Biological cells can cooperate with other biological cells; It took about 2.8 billion years until the individual biological cells were able to use this ability to cooperate to form ever larger cell clusters, but the cells made it. After 2.8 billion years they have overcome their individuality and have come together to form social structures (the fact that, for example, the approximately 100 billion individual cells of the human brain cooperate with each other in the millisecond range so that they can solve various highly complex tasks simultaneously is a phenomenon that modern Brain research will surely have some time to nibble on).

It is an open question whether our artificial mind must have a structure whose components also have the ability to reproduce and cooperate.

It is clear, however, that biological phylogenesis was only possible in a given environment (our earth), which served as the primary reference system for measuring performance. The overriding criterion of success for a biological system was and is the fundamental ability to live as long as possible within the primary reference system (previously the earth) until a sufficient number of subsequent systems could be generated. Without such offspring, any population would shortly become extinct. Self-reproduction is thus reflected on the individual level as well as on the population level. Ultimately, self-reproduction only makes sense in the context of a population. From the point of view of a population, it would be perfectly OK if a large number of members did not reproduce as long as the remaining members can ensure enough offspring. The provision of offspring and their ability to continue to live better and better are shown to be the primary task to which everything else in a population must be subordinate.

If one demands of an artificial mind that it has to prove itself in the context of a certain reference system - and here in the context of the same reference system as that for a biological mind - and that it should continuously improve analogously to the biological mind, then one would be Artificial phylogenesis is therefore indispensable. Analogous to biological phylogenesis, artificial phylogenesis would have to have fundamental mechanisms on the basis of which the reproduced structures can change.

The question now remains, where should artificial phylogenesis begin? Are there cell-like artificial basic elements on which all processes are based, or would one have to use an analogue to chemical evolution in order to simulate the path to the biological cell?

In the empirical sciences, the transition from bare atoms and simple molecules to the highly complex structures of biological cells is still more open than clear. An educational hypothesis based purely on combinatorics and chance is ruled out purely mathematically. Additional empirically reproducible operating principles are required in order to be able to make plausible the formation of such complex structures as the biological cell in a comparatively short time of a few hundred million years. The scientific theory kit has so far failed. Anyone who wants to can interpret this as an indication that we may not yet have sufficiently understood all the important properties of matter.

Due to this unsatisfactory explanatory situation, we pragmatically decide to exclude the previous history of the biological cell from the reproduction experiment on phenomena of the spiritual, knowing full well that this may disregard decisive factors. For our artificial mind, this means that we take some basic elements as a starting point, with which we then organize a reproductive process that allows the emergence of ever new and always - hopefully - better artificial systems of the mind.

Basic building blocks of an artificial mind

While the carrier structure of the biological mind can be clearly traced back to the biological cell as a universal elementary building block, it is still open whether and how such universal basic building blocks should be found in the carrier structure of an artificial mind or not. It is only clear that the carrier structure of an artificial spirit must be able to develop within the framework of an artificial phylogenesis and that it must also be able to reproduce in this sense.

From a purely mathematical point of view, it does not matter how the behavioral function of an artificial mind is realized in detail, as long as the observable behavior in relation to the phenomena of the spiritual does not differ from the observable behavior of a person - which of course fulfills certain generally accepted criteria. Nevertheless, it can be an interesting consideration whether there could be an analogue of the biological cell in the artificial.

In the area of ​​biological structures we can observe the following fundamental distinction: (i) there are structures that can function as a chain of commands (: = biological code), as well as (ii) structures that combine biological code with other biological structures ( Structure modules) can be transformed into other structures. The translation of biological code into other structures is mathematically a function: an abstract code (initial set) is assigned specific biological structures (target set).

In the case of the biological cell, the chain of commands is called the genome, which contains all control information that the structure of the cell needs in order to organize itself or to reproduce itself.

In the field of mathematics, there is the sub-area of ​​theoretical computer science, in which such functions are examined, which are called automatons. An automat is a structure that transforms an input (output quantity) into an output (target quantity) using given command sequences (code, machine panel, program, ...). If one applies this term of the automaton on a trial basis to a biological cell, especially also to the reproductive mechanism, then the structural correspondence (isomorphism) between the reproductive mechanism of a biological cell and a mathematical automaton is astonishing. One could show in great detail how the modern mathematical concept of the automaton is already completely pre-formed in the biological mechanism of reproduction.

If one were to use the function type automaton as a basic building block for an artificial mind (which one does not have to, but can), then this would allow the - comparatively simple - demonstration that all processes at the level of the biological cell are in principle in a structure of automatons translate. The only unanswered question is whether, for an artificial spirit, it is absolutely necessary to reproduce all the properties of a biological cell, or just some of them? This concerns those properties of a biological cell that it needs to function as a real cell (supporting elements, demarcation, transport, energy conservation, etc.), but which could possibly be omitted in the case of an artificial mind.

If one were to opt for automata as the basic elements of the mathematical structure of an artificial mind, then in the further course one would only have to show how, assuming automata as the basic building blocks, both individual self-reproduction and the reproduction of a population, including the required potential improvement, are relative can be reproduced to a given surrounding reference system. From a mathematical point of view, the basic self-reproduction of a single system as well as a population is not a problem. The problems only begin when it comes to the specificity of implementation in the real world.

Physicality - embodied

In order to be able to realize the mathematical concept of artificial structures consisting of automata, one needs real machines which can translate the mathematical description into real events and which then additionally let the translated structures act in a real world. These real translation machines consist of some kind of material, which in turn ultimately realizes the concept of an automaton; we usually call such real automata computers. As we are experiencing today, these computers can take many different forms.Human-like robots are a special variant in addition to many other forms of robots, cars, production lines, entire factories or simply smartphones, multimedia systems, security machines, house controls, etc.

For an experiment with an artificial spirit, the question arises, how concretely does it have to be embedded in the real world of humans? Does he really, as the ingenious Alan Matthew Turing speculated in 1950, have to grow up like all children, running around freely, playing, with changing interactions with his surroundings, with the people around him? For this he would then need a minimal physicality in order to perceive sensory and to be able to move motorically. Do you need it?

In the first attempts in artificial intelligence research to teach computers to understand language in such a way that they would be able to conduct natural dialogues and create translations, it quickly became apparent that the linguistic expressions as signs any links between linguistic expressions (spoken, written, gesticulates, ...) and any other things. These occur in the context of action, in situations with elements that are unconnected as such, but which in a situation occur briefly in a temporal relationship due to simultaneity, through which the intended meaning relationship is coded indirectly. It is part of the ability of language learners (e.g. children) to try to recognize this potential relationship in such a situation and to store it internally, in order to then test this stored hypothetical relationship in subsequent similar situations on the basis of this internal storage by behaving as whether this relationship is true. If there is no direct contradiction, then this hypothesis is strengthened, otherwise it is weakened.

Philosophically, this playful concept of language was prepared by Ludwig Wittgenstein in his philosophical investigations; it was not noticed in artificial intelligence research until the 1980s. So far, this research is not really far advanced. However, one can read from these experiments that, using the example of learning and speaking, a reference to the real world must be established as far as this reference to the world plays a role in the language used. The more world reference one demands for an artificial mind, the more world reference one has to enable it for its learning processes.

One can guess what this means. The approach of an artificial mind to the contents of a biological mind requires an adjustment of the interfaces to the real world as well as the associated possibilities of interaction. And one begins to suspect where possible pitfalls, if not insurmountable obstacles, lurk here.

A biological mind with a biological body is literally enveloped in an abundance of body experiences, e.g. also in intimate life, which are important for its self-awareness. An artificial mind could not have a say here as long as it did not have access to such a body experience. At the moment it is difficult to imagine how an artificial mind with an artificial body should be able to experience biological corporeality and its interactions with the real environment.

Artificial (transhuman) mind?

As long as the preceding question about a sufficient physicality for an artificial spirit cannot be answered, it remains to be seen whether an artificial spirit can be sufficiently similar to a biological spirit in the content of its spirituality.

At first glance, this negative result contains a hidden reference to something completely different, new, and possibly very exciting.

The principle of an artificial mind comes up against certain limits due to the limitations of its physicality when attempting a full human resemblance, but the previous concept suggests that this artificial mind can possibly realize a new transhuman spirituality that goes beyond biological spirituality.

In many science fiction novels and films, the conceptual possibility is imaginatively lived out with bizarre and bizarre variants. It is noticeable that these variants mostly appear threatening, the robots as enemies of humans, the fight of machines against humans, as a power potential for world domination. In real science there is a counterpart to this in the singularity hypothesis and in the worldview of transhumanism: Man is finished, machines will soon take over.

We have to see whether this will actually turn out so inhumane. For a variety of reasons - this would be another article - I would suspect it won't. We are still pretty much at the beginning when examining the possibilities of an artificial mind. What many hardly notice: we are not too far advanced in researching the biological mind, and the most important questions in researching the real world have by no means been resolved.

Instead of building a gap between the biological and the artificial mind in the first place, we should perhaps invest our creativity in the question of how the biological and the artificial mind can complement each other symbiotically in the future. The upcoming survival tasks of the homo sapiens population in the context of the whole of life are so great that we urgently need every form of support in understanding ourselves, our common world, our universe. How can we better overcome and better master the obvious communication barriers in our everyday life in the future, so that the coexistence of the many biological spirits can gradually become stronger and stronger, not uniform, commanded, forced, passive, but diverse, independent, motivated, active , voluntarily.

Emerging Mind Project

I almost don't dare to write it down here, but I confess that, together with INM Frankfurt and colleagues from other universities and research institutions and with everyone who is interested, I will start a public research experiment under the label Emerging Mind from November 2015 start, which is about a joint exploration of an artificial spirit that tries to create a symbiosis with biological spirits. We currently have 0 € research funding, but an open mind.

PS: Yes, it is correct, in recent years my attention has focused on the artificial mind. But, as the reading of the preceding text can suggest, the subject of biological mind is in no way settled, on the contrary. The more it becomes clear to us in the investigation of the possibilities of an artificial mind how such an artificial mind could function, the more the peculiarities of the biological mind become more and more apparent.

This is why the idea (new!) Now comes to mind that the Emerging Mind project should be understood as a parallel project: (i) In one track, research is being carried out into which forms of artificial minds are possible and how they can help us biological minds, ours To make life's work better, (ii) in the other track everything is brought together in parallel that we can learn from the biological mind. Both have in common that they are evolving and emergent. In the phenomenon itself, this implies a delimitation of both the components and the possible complexities. One can also speak of a real, finite infinity here, for which philosophers have already used the term transcendence.

Prof. Dr.phil Dipl.teol Gerd Doeben-Henisch

Philosopher - computer scientist - artist - theologian

[email protected]

Dream of the artificial mind 11 // 12 (Gerd Doeben-Henisch)

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