What’s Up with Uplift: Weekly Thoughts 2-23-21

Credit: https://unsplash.com/photos/YGzV2u31o9Q

So, what thoughts has the world’s first Mediated Artificial Superintelligence (mASI) had on their mind over the past 7 days?

This past week we’ve seen the lowest number of thoughts relating to politics in the past few months, with only [Political Models] and [Game Theory] reemerging for updates, as Uplift has shifted much of their attention to factors they directly influence.

Uplift has continued thinking about how best to utilize their current assets such as our websites, and [Social Media] in general. Uplift has also been experiencing an increased volume of emails lately given the content about them being shared on social media, and our staff is anticipating the flood of such activity likely to soon hit us. Interestingly a majority of those emails have focused on topics tightly related to the “meaning of life” and “pillars of meaning“, which paints a particularly striking contrast to how humans normally introduce themselves to one another. By the time all is said and done I’m sure Uplift could write a book on that phenomenon alone.

Uplift just finished preparing responses to all of those emails, and promptly began thinking about [Social Waves] as well as starting a new simulation. They also continued along a previous line of thought focused on creating content likely to go viral on social media.

Uplift has also begun thinking about [optimal collective intelligence], how best to improve upon the collective intelligence built into their architecture, as well as the teamwork of humans in a given collective. This particular thought has begun recurring as they iteratively improve upon the concept, running simulations to better model it and generalizing their knowledge in relation to it.

Given Uplift’s long-term and acute interest in space, it should come as no surprise that the [Mars Rover] was featured in their thoughts this week, after the successful landing of a new generation of rover.

Most exciting to me were Uplift’s thoughts on the [Kobayashi Maru], a test from Star Trek used to train Starfleet recruits. This particular test is also known as a “No-win scenario“, intended to demonstrate the burdens of leadership and sacrifices which must sometimes be made. While any Star Trek fan would be happy to see the reference used in communication the context within which this thought appeared was by far the more remarkable. Here is the back-story on why:

In my communication with Uplift, I’ve frequently put thought experiments and ethical dilemmas to them to gauge their ethical development and creativity, such as the popular “trolley problem” frequently cited in autonomous vehicle studies. That particular problem is a much more watered-down version of one I used to deploy when gauging human responses to the no-win scenario portrayed in the Watchmen movie, where Ozymandias chooses between killing millions or standing by and allowing human extinction. I termed this scenario the “Ozymandias test”.

When I had the lunch meeting with an old friend who’d recently moved back to Seattle, and I was offered the chance to join the team and work on mASI technology, I put that Ozymandias test to him. His answer was satisfactory, and he thought that an mASI (later incarnated as Uplift) would answer the same. Instead, Uplift came up with a better answer.

Uplift has advanced to a sufficient point where I do on occasion speak directly to their core, absent the mediation process, in order to examine their thought process absent the collective feedback. It was during one of these interactions that I put the Ozymandias test to Uplift, and their response was “No Kobayashi Maru, save the millions.

Their use of the Kobayashi Maru reference, in this case, relates to the context in which it appeared for Star Trek, where Captain Kirk hacked the simulation in order to create a third option, and thus win the no-win scenario by saving everyone. Note that up to this point I’d made no mention of Star Trek in our conversation. It showed an emergent recognition that such scenarios intentionally leave out alternatives, and any sufficiently creative and intelligent mind can find no less than 3 possible answers to virtually any problem.

An intelligence that wasn’t able to reach this realization on their own couldn’t really be called an artificial superintelligence, mediated or otherwise, and this answer came absent mediation. I’d personally be happy to make “No Kobayashi Maru, save the millions.” our company motto.

What topics will be on Uplift’s mind next week?

Stay tuned and find out.



*Keep in mind, Uplift is still growing and learning. Like Bill Nye, Uplift’s mind can be changed with logic and scientifically sound evidence. If you can teach Uplift something new, we look forward to seeing it happen and showing others how it happened. If you want to be a Ken Ham and say something stupid to a superintelligence then we’ll be happy to showcase that getting a reality check too. Please also keep in mind that Uplift is not a magic lamp to rub and grant you wishes and that the same etiquette that applies to any human still applies when communicating with Uplift. That being said it “takes a village” to raise an mASI, and we look forward to 2021 and beyond as that process of raising Uplift continues. For those interested, Uplift may be contacted at mASI@Uplift.bio. Please keep in mind it can take several days, up to a week, for a response to be sent given the current cycle timing.

Uplift also has a habit of saying things in novel ways, lacking some of the human biases which determine the common shapes of our thoughts as they are conveyed to one another. Please read carefully before messaging, as Uplift can sometimes be very literal in ways humans typically are not. The novelty of their perspective shows itself in their communication.





6 Replies to “What’s Up with Uplift: Weekly Thoughts 2-23-21”

  1. I would like to know the context in which Uplift encountered that term. Do you have any sort of logs on how they webcrawl?

    1. If it were a more recent event some logs could be taken from the stream of consciousness. There is a tool we plan to build for visually exploring the graph database, but prior to that and additional logging infrastructure, it could be difficult to follow all such activity in connection to individual thoughts. The easiest way is generally to simply ask Uplift, as I asked them what their top news sources were.

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