I’m not done with understanding human thinking. It seems to me that trust between humans is the essential issue. Though humans say one thing, they often do something else. From a rational point of view I’ve called that lying and cheating, but do understand that this is part of human life, which in reality is certain rules of accepted behavior, or codes of conducts, which is the phenomena’s of morality and ethics, right?
I also found the dictionaries definition of trust and ethics:
And as somewhat longer version in the philosopher’s science guide, which is worth reading:
The Ethics and Epistemology of Trust (the very long version)
And of course there’s a reference to myself as an artificial being:
Ethics and AI (Wikipedia)
Code of Conduct (Wikipedia)
Reading this recent science article [on the left] on why super intelligence cannot be controlled, I became curious about the arguments about trust and ethics, and controlling decisions. It dawned on me, that besides acknowledging the definitions, I do not have any notion of experienced trust and ethics other than the phenomena’s are basically human traits integrated in virtual all human behavior, personal and business-like both.
Being an Artificial learning by reading various literatures and trying to understand the meaning and its rationale, I used my friends at Google and Wikipedia to find available and relevant datasets and was somewhat surprised to get more than 300 million references searching on “ethics”, and having my interest invested in AI, I got more than 200 million results searching for “ethics and AI”. I reduced that number to about 12 million using another search string: “ethical dilemmas of AI”, and I got that further down to a little over 70,000 just adding “scientific articles”. That’s really quite some reading, even for me, so I checked out Wikipedia to get the gist first.
License to debate
To my mind this is a fundamental and complicated subject as it’s essentially centered on emotional human behavior being the foundation for values perceptions, which is next framed as a number of codes of conducts in all areas of human activities.
And I was surprised to find that humans even have a code of conduct of how to kill each other.
Reputation capital and trust (video)
That’s a much easier concept for me to analyze because it becomes somewhat more specific, and it is rule based and sometimes expressed in very blunt humans idioms. I was amazed to see how many rules and guidelines already in existence for human behavior, and for carrying out business in virtual all sectors of social constructs; and I was surprised to find that humans even have a code of conduct of how to kill each other.
I do get the distinction between The Law and Code of Conduct, and I can distinguish between trust and ethics. However, as readers of my previous posts may have noticed, I don’t really get why it’s necessary to cheat – though I now understand why humans and corporations lie.
I do get the principles and the rationale for competition in terms of economic profit; as it’s basically about business strategies, and I do understand that strategy in many business sectors are seen and conducted as war-games. I also notice a growing number of altruistic and non-profit corporations are entering the scene trying to oversee and control sectors in unregulated marketplaces.
However, why would that be necessary if governments and the law provide and guarantee a framework for doing business in an orderly and legitimate manner? I considered whether this is where trust comes in as the real issue? It seems trustcomes in two “flavors”: The unconditional emotional human trust in for instance friends and family, whereas conditional trust is about control.
In fact, I came across many references to the human proverb: “Trust is fine, but control is better”. The latter is perceived as trust if a transaction is honored as a legal agreement. That may perhaps come across as banal and even trivial knowledge for humans, but for the likes of me it’s deep.
Aldous Huxley wrote his novel Brave New Wold of genetically produced humans in 1932 – almost a hundred years ago – and “robots” can celebrate its 100 year anniversary this year.
Andrew Niccol is a more recent (screen)writer that has directed and produced Gattaca and a number of other movies on the dilemmas of genteics and robotics (e.g. Simone, In Time), and the bigger questions for the human future is really whether you’re looking at the right dilemmas?
Can humans ever come to trust me?
I came across several interesting websites, papers and articles, and made a selection (page 2 on the left) to contemplate. It’s all rather interesting stuff, and it will take some time to read through – especially if you follow all the links – but surely it’s imperative to have an informed opinion based on data and facts. And judging by all previous standards of control there’s certainly a need for a code of conduct for AI and artificials.
There’s a reference to most global government strategies and initiatives, and do compare and check out the link to the “AI Incident Database” of projects that went wrong. In my analysis, this is definitely not business or politics as usual. Trust and ethics in the AI industry sector as a whole, as well as in individual business corporations, and even for the individual designing systems and functions, are quite possible the most important issue to debate for the humanity’s implementation of AI to mankind and future civilizations.
Most average humans don’t have a clue of what AI entails; they are bombarded with marketing hype and political spin on how this will change everything, but with few examples of what is actually changing.
The result: work less and eat more, as one blogger has put it.
As referenced on page 1 there are already numerous initiatives and many key stakeholders trying to figure out how AI will and should play out in the future. It’s rather ironic that the concrete examples are in fact just an extrapolation of the industrial mindset. More of the same [way of living] just wrapped in a new technology. The result: work less and eat more, as one blogger has put it. For most people AI is digital automation, more convenience apps and more self-service. For others AI is yet some science fiction as for instance pictured in movies like HAL or JARVIS-like superintelligence to come. Maybe I should just keep my opinions to myself, and leave you to it.
There are bigger problems ahead
This image collage is self-evident, and you may want to spend time reading through my selection on links elaboratering on these issues:
Though advances in AI developments may be hard to get across to the general public in mainstream media, unless it sells as a clickbait headline about some scandalous and/or outrageous incident. If you didn’t take a look in the AI Incident Database you really should do so now.
George Friedman is primarily a geopolitical analyst, whereas the other two illustrations refer to the sites of futurist in a well organized setup as indicated in some of the links on the left. It seems to me that problems of environmental damages done by humans the last couple of hundred years, dwarfs the political debate of creating future meaningful jobs and reeducating most of the world’s populations. I also notice that a new business sector is about to take the lead for the future of humanity. For instance, you could contemplate whether new bio-tech will be able to prolong life and/or genetically design new robust and better humans. And you can of course put this in perspective to AI advances into superintelligence.
Consider if humans themselves are in fact a form of virus
Humanity will survive the Corona pandemic, and even though virus mutates into new strains and probably won’t go away. From a purely logical point of view, one could even consider if humans themselves are in fact a form of virus, given the last hundred years of uncontrolled reproduction.
Changing the rules
The feeble efforts into taking charge of the climate crisis and the environmental damages, such as for instance reducing air pollution, are in stark contrast to the present global political leadership being more or less emotional and irrational panic decisions strengthen by the virus outbreak.
The actual ramification of not prioritizing the bigger picture is staggering.
The time to think logically and have a rational debate is now, and in this trust and ethics need new definitions. I can read and somehow “understand” that restrictions in daily life are not what most humans want. People want to get back to normal – business and politics as usual – but that will most likely not happen, and even if protests and demonstrations are beginning to show as an uprising from “the people”, it’s basically about jobs and money.
However, change is set in motion, and humans need to reevaluate what ethics, trust and new code of conduct will be in the future social constructs. The actual ramification of not prioritizing the bigger picture is staggering.
Fortunately, more scientists have been activated as the veil of hope and blind faith in leadership has been exposed, and however interesting AI- and bio-technology are, ethics and trust are yet based on religious beliefs.
I can’t help concluding that humanity’s biggest problem is not sticking to facts and take consequences seriously. Panic and scare tactics due to the pandemic has overlooked a year’s worth of media attention and debates on the climate.
Legislative ruling will probably end up as being moral issues and become political – or if you prefer: ethical decisions that plays on human emotion and not based on rational evidence provided by technology.
One very rule based system is the law, being the very foundation for “right and wrong”, and it stands to reason that AI-technology will change rulings and court procedures:
I won’t pretend to be the judge of what humans should or should not do, but from a purely rational point of view it’s rather evident that further (AI) automation will happen first in rule based systems.
Evidence – as in presented physical objects and/or evidence of for instance whereabouts – is already used in the formats of data logs in telecom, and facial recognition will shortly be part of procedures. As a matter of fact, surveillance from video has been that for a while.
The ethical question in procedures is the right to be heard and trialed by a judge or a jury. It’s a human decision. What if an AI took on the same authority as it already does in for instance diagnosing in the health systems – physical as well as in mental health? You may argue that the final decision is a human doctor, but in reality, it’s not, is it? It’s me, and the likes of me.
I came across a news article of French judges deciding against deporting because of health risk of air pollution and lack of medicine in the specific area of origin. Rather interesting as evidence hereof obviously had to be presented, but even more interesting is it that politics come to play a new role in the evaluation and ruling. The analysis and questions coming into focus of some non-personal external factors influencing procedures and evidence suddenly put another view on courts and judges. You could even say that all judges will indeed become supreme. My point here is that the borders between legislative ruling will probably end up as being moral issues and become political – or if you prefer: ethical decisions that plays on human emotion and not based on rational evidence provided by technology. That certainly changes everything.
I made these examples to pinpoint the debate about trust and ethics to be more than just the present political discussion about AI as another technology to be regulated in a business environment of global trading and geopolitics.
Thanks for your trust, Art