Can robots become self-aware?

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Can robots become self-aware?

#1

Post by Mastermind » Thu Jan 27, 2005 6:55 am

Kurieuo: Split from thread, Abiogenesis not explained from Titan

Would extremely advanced robots be considered lifeforms?

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#2

Post by Anonymous » Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:33 am

Would extremely advanced robots be considered lifeforms?
It depends on what definition one uses for life.
In my opinion robots can in principle being indistinguible with humans.
(you know I don't believe in soul and spirit different from music and alchool)

To my undertsanding if we were able to simulate a complex enough neural network on a computer, this entity would be self-aware and would have similar rights to our human rights.

What do you think?
Can such a robot be saved? ;)

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#3

Post by Mastermind » Thu Jan 27, 2005 7:36 am

Actually, I was under the impression that the first bacteria appeared in extremely hot temperatures. But who knows.


As for robots, i do not think a machine can become self-aware. I have had far too many experiences that prove the existance of a soul to just shrug them off. Then again, maybe God will want to give a robot a soul. Who knows?

And about the complex neural network, given the current ability(or lack of) that our scientific community has when it comes to understanding both the brain and the mind, I don't think so. :p

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#4

Post by Anonymous » Thu Jan 27, 2005 8:13 am

Actually, I was under the impression that the first bacteria appeared in extremely hot temperatures. But who knows.
There are different (and opposite) models for abiogenesis.
Some are for hot some are for frozen.

Do you have any opinion about robots which is not based on your preconceived idea of god?
As for robots, i do not think a machine can become self-aware.
Why? Can you tell me a reason possibly not involving your personal experience with souls and spirits?

And about the complex neural network, given the current ability(or lack of) that our scientific community has when it comes to understanding both the brain and the mind, I don't think so.
Was it sarcastic? I'm not programmed to understand humor. ;)

http://www.pivot.net/~jpierce/thaler_interview.htm
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/quer ... t=Abstract
http://www.bbsonline.org/documents/a/00/00/11/77/

Not that I'm suggesting that we are already able to produce a self aware neural network, still ...

BTW I'm from year 3478. I remind you that people in 1800 believed that no train could go faster that 40m/h without killing the passangers.

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#5

Post by Mastermind » Thu Jan 27, 2005 9:17 am

Do you have any opinion about robots which is not based on your preconceived idea of god?
Yes. You may be able to get a neural network complex enough to simulate self awareness, but it will not be true self awareness, just a programmed impression. It is difficult to explain, but I have done a great deal of programming and no matter how real a machine might sound, it is still a machine.
As for robots, i do not think a machine can become self-aware.
For the above mentioned reasons. It would not be true self awareness. Just programming.

Was it sarcastic? I'm not programmed to understand humor. ;)

http://www.pivot.net/~jpierce/thaler_interview.htm
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/quer ... t=Abstract
http://www.bbsonline.org/documents/a/00/00/11/77/

Not that I'm suggesting that we are already able to produce a self aware neural network, still ...

BTW I'm from year 3478. I remind you that people in 1800 believed that no train could go faster that 40m/h without killing the passangers.
Yes, it was sarcastic. There are several problems with even identifying if a neural network is truly self aware. How do we know it is not programming? In addition, we go by the assumption that if it can respond to natural stimuli and can make decisions based on those that it posesses a good alternative version of our own mind. Can you make a computer love, or hate? Frankly, it would take a lot to convince me that a machine truly is self aware. For starters, it must become so without any(or minimal) programming, otherwise it doesn't count.

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#6

Post by Anonymous » Thu Jan 27, 2005 3:40 pm

Yeah this isn't hard to answer at all, mastermind has it right. Programmers will tell you that its impossible to get a machine or robot of any sort to do anything other then what you tell it to do. You can create a robot that might react to his environment but even the way he react's to specific stimuli is programmed. Robot's can't think at all, its impossible and any real programmer will tell you that.

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#7

Post by Kurieuo » Thu Jan 27, 2005 6:57 pm

I'm a programmer, and yes it's impossible. Any gathering information would be just setting the parameters of the program to collect more information, and then store it, and retrieve in situations that are programmed into the robot.

For example, someone could program a robot when they look at picture to say how beautiful, and give the accompanying expression we might have while admiring a picture. Yet, the robot isn't really thinking or reflecting to itself that such is beautiful, it is only carrying out a condition programmed into it:
  • <pre>if ($painting_with_certain_qualities_is_seen) {
    $words_to_say = "How beautiful";
    speakWords($words_to_say);
    doEmotion('smile');
    } // ;)</pre>
Indeed, this is one reason why a functionalist approach to the mind/body problem largely fails. As if we simply take in data and react according to certian predefined conditions, then such doesn't explain how we realise what is going on.

Kurieuo.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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#8

Post by Anonymous » Fri Jan 28, 2005 2:15 am

There are several problems with even identifying if a neural network is truly self aware. How do we know it is not programming?
How do you know that *I* am self-aware?
How do I know that YOU are self-aware?
BTW in your creationist view (at least for some of view) what is the difference between human and this sort of possible futuristic robots?
Both have been created and both had some sort of basic programming.
Please explain.

Are you all sure of what you say?
I'm a programmer myself and I'm perfectly aware that we are quite
far away from grasping how to create a possible spontaneous intelligence?
Still I don't see any reason why intelligence cannot be reproduced artificially.

I'm also a physicists and I studied neural networks as well. (BTW K, A, or mm: have you ever studied them?)
Neural networks show collective behaviour which is not "programmed" in its basic constituents. They are capable of some task which the brain can do and for which there is no efficient algorithm.
Neural networks do not need a programming, in the sense that there is no programming to do efficiently the specific problem.
They are just instructed to learn independently of what they have to learn.

I think that it is pretty clear (even if I don't think I can convince you) our brain it is just a neural network and that will account for all our personality.
No doubt to me that if we are able to take a picture of our synaptic connections, code them in a neural network and implement it on an artificial device we would have a human artificial mind.

That is what I think and what you disagree on. What else can I say?
We shall see in few centuries.

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#9

Post by RGeeB » Fri Jan 28, 2005 6:36 am

ipazia wrote:
I'm also a physicists and I studied neural networks as well. (BTW K, A, or mm: have you ever studied them?)
Neural networks show collective behaviour which is not "programmed" in its basic constituents. They are capable of some task which the brain can do and for which there is no efficient algorithm.
Neural networks do not need a programming, in the sense that there is no programming to do efficiently the specific problem.
They are just instructed to learn independently of what they have to learn.
What is the chance that the basic constituents would come together to perform a required task? Compare that with the chances of the compatibility of the different functions a network could generate at random, especially when a result other than survival will destroy it (bringing to an end any external stimuli induced adaptation behaviour). Would a network choose to perform other functions which is not essential for its own survival? Why would an independent network even want to survive, replicate or pass on learned behaviour, if its not self aware?
Maranatha!

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#10

Post by Mastermind » Fri Jan 28, 2005 2:00 pm

ipazia, you are right: we will always disagree on the issue. I simply want to point out that you would require some programming done by an intelligent being to get that robot to even appear sentient. I know you are sentient because I am and it is not unreasonable that, since you are a part of my species, you are sentient as well. This puts you in an awkward position however. The robot needs some sort of program that tells it to learn, as well as teaches it efficient ways of collecting and storing data. That program does not write itself. If the robot NEEDS a designer to jump start it, then we probably do as well.

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#11

Post by Anonymous » Sat Jan 29, 2005 8:58 am


What is the chance that the basic constituents would come together to
perform a required task?
Unable to compute.
The probability of something to happen is very sensitive
on the details imagined for it to happen and on the environmental conditions.
And these details are quite unknown presently.

Moreover, "chances" is an ambigous word to me.
Are you asking for the probability for it to accur, for it to occur on Earth,
for it to occur in a given time interval, or what?
All these different notions of "chance" need different knowledge
to be computed.

If the robot NEEDS a designer to jump start it, then we probably do as well
You are right.



However... does the robot *need* a designer? I don;t think so.

Can you mention a thing that I can design which cannot happen by chance?
I mean it is all a matter of probability so you should not have any objection
in keeping our discussion on dice rolling (since in that way we can produce events
of arbitrary low probability to occur, even less probable than abiogenesis).

Now which is the probability of getting a six in one roll? 1/6
If I show you a tape showing such a dice roll you won't probably find anything strange about it.

What is the probability of getting two sixes in two rolls? 1/36
If I show you a tape showing such a dice roll you won't probably find anything strange about it.
...
What is the probability of getting n sixes in n rolls? (6)^-n
(which is arbitrarily close to zero if n becomes big enough).

Imagine you are shown a tape of a roll of 10000 dice which produces a
sequence of 10000 sixes. The tape is not edited, and the dice are regular
(we know it because the experiment is held by your god which cannot cheat you! ;))

Now I tell you, give me enough time or enough money and I can show you that tape
without cheating.


In the above metaphore (cheating=designer, not cheating=random event).


Let me be clear: I'm not saying that we know how abiogenesis occurred, or that
I can prove the designer to be not needed.
I'm just showing that YOU cannot prove the designer to be needed or reasonably necessary.

My point is that there is no difference in principle between "things which can happen by chance"
and "things which cannot happen by chance".


I already acknowledged our ignorance about abiogenesis (but you probably were not
on board yet). We need to solve worse problems about it than the problem of probability
you are mentioning. Basically we know too little to even be sure that the probability
problem is in fact a problem at all. You are mentioning probabilities which no one can compute.
Worse problems are chilarity and uniqueness, but there will be time for that.

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#12

Post by Mastermind » Sat Jan 29, 2005 9:13 am

I am already well aware that we do not necessarily need a designer. I highly recommend that you keep odds out of the discussion, since I have come to the conclusion that the appearance of chance does not change the fact that somethign DID occur, whether by design or by chance. For example, people try to prove that naturalistic evolution could not have occured because of the low chances. However, if you believe that God guided the process, then we have no data to observe what a naturalistic version of it would be, so discussing odds is not beneficial. We can, on the other hand, make logical assumptions. Mammals have a reproductive rate that is much smaller than that of bacteria. Despite that, it took bacteria 2 billion years to evolve into something more, yet the cambrian explosion's time was a few million years, in which the vast majority of complex organisms like animals appeared. This would be, as far as I'm concerned, PROOF of design. If a process should take more time in one instance and less in another, and yet the opposite happens, it is only logical to assume something interfered with it. Coincidentally, it corresponds to the Biblical account of creation. Now, what does this have to do with robots? For starters, I might find it acceptable that a robot might put itself together. I will NEVER find it acceptable that a robot would program itself to trigger any sort of intelligence. I DARE anybody to build a robot, leave it alone, and have that robot turn sentient. I do not believe, even from a naturalistic point of view, that the universe has been around long enough to make a robot program itself.

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#13

Post by Kurieuo » Sat Jan 29, 2005 3:19 pm

Ipazia,

First, thanks for portraying your beliefs is a kind and appropriate manner the last couple of posts. I must say I am somewhat suprised considering our history ;) ;), but I do appreciate having someone on the other side who can discuss without attacking or taking jabs at Christianity.

Considering the problems with natural origin of life scenarios, I'm curious to know whether you think it would be a rational position for someone to adopt a God belief? Please note I'm not asking whether you believe such a position is a necessary conclusion, as you have made clear you do not believe it necessary. However, from what I can tell in your words, it seems like you might be agree that it is at least plausible for someone to assume intelligence brought about life?

Kurieuo.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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#14

Post by Anonymous » Sun Jan 30, 2005 11:55 am

I am already well aware that we do not necessarily need a designer.
What does this mean? It seems to me that if you acknowledge that
we don't necessarily *need* a designer, then you automatically acknowledge
the possibility that we came undesigned. I.e. naturalistic explanation.
Is this what you mean? If not explain.

I highly recommend that you keep odds out of the discussion, since I have
come to the conclusion that the appearance of chance does not change the
fact that somethign DID occur, whether by design or by chance.
[By the way I was not the one raising odds argument. RGeeB was.
And when you say
The robot needs some sort of program that tells it to learn, as well as
teaches it efficient ways of collecting and storing data.
(my enphasis)
1) either your comment is without back up,
2) or you are referencing to some sort of low odds
3) or there is some sort of a priori barrier which makes some things
*in principle* impossible to happen without a designer.

I asked you about 3 and you produced no reply about it. So it must not be 3.
You said you are not going to discuss about odds, so it must not be 2.

Then what I'm left with? ;)
]
We can, on the other hand, make logical assumptions. Mammals have a reproductive
rate that is much smaller than that of bacteria....
I analuzed this in details before. In all cases we are able to analyze
data *confirm* a naturalistic explanation (though this is not precise enough to be called an evidence
in favor of a naturalistic explanation).
Your argument is vacuum because you are reasoning on phenotypes instead
of genotypes. You don't want to discuss odds but it is clear that time for
something to happen is proportional to the probability for it to happen and
inverse proportional to the number of tries for unit time.

In the case of bacteria vs mammal you raised, there is nothing we know about probabilities
nor about tries (just to give an example, among many issues I can think of, first bacteria
needed to change atmosphere before being able to evolve clorophil and photosyntesis;
on the contrary mammal found a more or less good environment to colonize).

If you consider genotipes (that is how many mutations are needed to produce a evolutionary step)
and you compare with mutation rate you find that evolution went *exactly* the the
order of magnitudo of speed one could expect.

[For example, if you compare roughly how many mutations are needed to develop
a chimp from a human and you estimate how much time is needed at the present mutation rate
measured in humans (or chimps) you will get a result compatible with 10MY.
Paleonthology dates independently that the last common ancestor between
chimps and humans is about 5-7MY ago which is more or less in agreement with the time
predicted on genetic basis. That is coincidence, isn;t it? ;)

Now reverse my argument: if you want to prove your designer beyond any reasonable doubt all you have to do
is to find an evolution branch which clearly break that constraint. Can you?]

So if you want to suggest that there were not enough time for superior animals to evolve
I fear you will need to present some data (possibly better than mine) to back up your view.


If a process should take more time in one
instance and less in another, and yet the opposite happens, it is only
logical to assume something interfered with it.
You are right.
Something like one needs more mutations to have some step than another,
one had more tries for unit time for some enviromental reasons,
or more mutations for some enviromental reasons,
or more or less selection pressure.

I could list a dozen reasons perfectly compatible with evolution theory.
There is nothing in evolution theory prescribing evolution to proceed at a fixed speed.
That proves simply that evolution theory is not clear in your mind.
In my opinion of course. And no personal attack to you. Just a remark on the argument you presented.


Coincidentally, it corresponds to the Biblical account of creation.
really? What is your interpretation of genesis?
What is your intepretations of friut trees appearing before animals and before sunlight?
Just curious to know this one. :)




I will NEVER find it acceptable that a
robot would program itself to trigger any sort of intelligence.
That is your problem.

Anyway, do you think a human designer could trig a robot
some sort of intelligence?
Can your onnipotent god?
[Notice that in the thread there is no reference to the fact that a robot
should *spontaneously* evolve self-awarness. It just asks if a robot (designed or not)
can be self-aware. I said yes but I still miss your opinion about it.]

I DARE anybody to build a robot, leave it alone, and have that robot turn
sentient.
I already acknoledged that no one is capabe today of taking that challange.
This does not prove it to be impossible.
I do not believe, even from a naturalistic point of view, that
the universe has been around long enough to make a robot program itself.
Universe age is not important. if you make enough tries in a second,
no matter how unlikely it is, you certainly can.
That is basic probability theory.

Unless the probability is exactly zero, for which you should provide very serious reasons.




K wrote: First, thanks for portraying your beliefs is a kind and appropriate
manner the last couple of posts.
You are welcome, despite I see no change in my way of portrying my position wrt
my "history".
I always try to reply thoughrougly to motivated questions.

but I do appreciate having someone on the
other side who can discuss without attacking or taking jabs at
Christianity.
[I never attacked Christians or less than ever christianity.
I always attacked (and still attack) flawed arguments.
When you want my home is open to you. Do you want to come for dinner?
I have nothing against you or others. I just think some of your arguments
are wrong and feel the right (at least for scientific arguments) to discuss them.
Can I?]
Considering the problems with natural origin of life scenarios, I'm
curious to know whether you think it would be a rational position for
someone to adopt a God belief?
Not in my definition of rational.
I acknowledge the possibility for someone to adopt a god
belief on an emotional or mistical or moral motivation.
I acknowledge the possibility for someone to adopting it as a scientific agent
without rational motivation (what I called goddiditso position and what I have always acknowledged).
Here and everywhere I never questioned your right to believe in your god.
Once for all I have nothing against you or your god. I just think it is irrational that some xtians
need a scientific motivation to their faith. [BTW I'm against people who need a religious support
to their scientific beliefs, as well. So even in this view I wouldn't say I'm against religion.]

Just a god to filling the gaps in scientific models is, IN MY OPINION, not rational
since it push the problem one step up (to "how made god").
I know you don't allow that question, but I never understood why I shouldn't allow it.

Notice my argument has nothing to do with religion.
I believe the designer explanation to be too easy even for non-god designers.
One could believe that and extraterrestrial civilization created life on Earth.
This would destroy all your arguments about impossibility of something created by chance.
Still it just push the problem to who created that extraterrestrial civilization.
I'm sure you see the circular reasoning with ET. What I don't understand is why you don't see
the circular reasoning with your god.
However, from what I can tell in
your words, it seems like you might be agree that it is at least
plausible for someone to assume intelligence brought about life?
I accept it plausible. I just think it is not a rational reason.
[please foregive my English. Was I clear enough?]

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#15

Post by Mastermind » Sun Jan 30, 2005 12:40 pm

What does this mean? It seems to me that if you acknowledge that
we don't necessarily *need* a designer, then you automatically acknowledge
the possibility that we came undesigned. I.e. naturalistic explanation.
Is this what you mean? If not explain.
I acknowledge the position from a scientific point of view. You did ask me to leave my personal experiences out of it, did you not? Yes, scientifically, it is possible. Extremely unlikely, but possible. Personally(and this is my right), no way in hell. You may ask me to remove personal experiences in a scientific discussion, but I cannot remove them from my core beliefs as these things have been proven TO ME.
1) either your comment is without back up,
2) or you are referencing to some sort of low odds
3) or there is some sort of a priori barrier which makes some things
*in principle* impossible to happen without a designer.

I asked you about 3 and you produced no reply about it. So it must not be 3.
You said you are not going to discuss about odds, so it must not be 2.

Then what I'm left with? ;)
Actually, I am with 3. Until somebody shows me a computer that programs itself without any prior programming at all, I might move to 1. Otherwise, NO.
I analuzed this in details before. In all cases we are able to analyze
data *confirm* a naturalistic explanation (though this is not precise enough to be called an evidence
in favor of a naturalistic explanation).
Your argument is vacuum because you are reasoning on phenotypes instead
of genotypes. You don't want to discuss odds but it is clear that time for
something to happen is proportional to the probability for it to happen and
inverse proportional to the number of tries for unit time.

In the case of bacteria vs mammal you raised, there is nothing we know about probabilities
nor about tries (just to give an example, among many issues I can think of, first bacteria
needed to change atmosphere before being able to evolve clorophil and photosyntesis;
on the contrary mammal found a more or less good environment to colonize).

If you consider genotipes (that is how many mutations are needed to produce a evolutionary step)
and you compare with mutation rate you find that evolution went *exactly* the the
order of magnitudo of speed one could expect.

[For example, if you compare roughly how many mutations are needed to develop
a chimp from a human and you estimate how much time is needed at the present mutation rate
measured in humans (or chimps) you will get a result compatible with 10MY.
Paleonthology dates independently that the last common ancestor between
chimps and humans is about 5-7MY ago which is more or less in agreement with the time
predicted on genetic basis. That is coincidence, isn;t it? ;)

Now reverse my argument: if you want to prove your designer beyond any reasonable doubt all you have to do
is to find an evolution branch which clearly break that constraint. Can you?]

So if you want to suggest that there were not enough time for superior animals to evolve
I fear you will need to present some data (possibly better than mine) to back up your view.



The problem is, I am stating that there was a deviation from the standard during the cambrian explosion. If you are using mutation rates from today, you have quite a bit of explaining to do. There are observed instances of unicellular organisms becoming multicellular.

We know for a fact that many types of bacteria multiply and mutate faster than us(that is why we have flu vaccines every year). Bacteria took 2 billion years to become multicellular. Yet we have an observed instance within the last 200 years(and possibly more, but I found at least one).

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html

Boraas (1983) reported the induction of multicellularity in a strain of Chlorella pyrenoidosa (since reclassified as C. vulgaris) by predation. He was growing the unicellular green alga in the first stage of a two stage continuous culture system as for food for a flagellate predator, Ochromonas sp., that was growing in the second stage. Due to the failure of a pump, flagellates washed back into the first stage. Within five days a colonial form of the Chlorella appeared. It rapidly came to dominate the culture. The colony size ranged from 4 cells to 32 cells. Eventually it stabilized at 8 cells. This colonial form has persisted in culture for about a decade. The new form has been keyed out using a number of algal taxonomic keys. They key out now as being in the genus Coelosphaerium, which is in a different family from Chlorella.

As you can see, we have the transition right before our eyes. Why did it take bacteria 2 billion years if we actually observed this? In addition, how did the bacteria know to stick together for protection? It is hardly instinctive, otherwise we'd have dozens of cases? Is it perhaps because God took mercy on them? ;)

In addition, if your statement about the monkey is correct, why did the process suddenly start with the Cambrian Explosion, lasted a few million years, and then pretty much stopped? If it is a continuos process like you suggest, it should still be happening. You mentioned 10 million years, and the recorded number is something about 30% smaller(hardly a coincidence, but I'll assume it is for the sake of argument).

The cambrian period lasted about 60 million years.
"http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/cambrian/camb.html"

If a huge part (% are in the 90s of species of animals) came within a 60 million year time period, I would call that one heck of a miracle.


You are right.
Something like one needs more mutations to have some step than another,
one had more tries for unit time for some enviromental reasons,
or more mutations for some enviromental reasons,
or more or less selection pressure.

I could list a dozen reasons perfectly compatible with evolution theory.
There is nothing in evolution theory prescribing evolution to proceed at a fixed speed.
That proves simply that evolution theory is not clear in your mind.
In my opinion of course. And no personal attack to you. Just a remark on the argument you presented.
Perhaps not. However, you ARE missing the point. I am not attacking its overall speed. I am attacking the position that animals, which mutate the slowest, appeared in the shortest period of time, while bacteria and plants, which multiply(well bacteria anyway) faster than animals took their sweet time. Let's assume a group of animals multiply once a month. That means every month, the entire species has a chance at different mutations. It takes many years for natural selection to weed out the bad mutations(unless the mutations are fatal upon birth). We know most mutations are bad, so it would take a species even longer to create another. Bacteria on the other hand(based on my own observations, back in HS when the biology teacher used to let us observe them with a microscope), bacteria multiply and exchange genetic information quite often. It definitely does not take them a month(or a year, since most animals have a mating season roughly every year) to do any of this. In addition, animals require a great deal more mutations to become a new species. A bacteria doesn't need nearly as many. So why does a species that seems to be made to mutate take so long, while complex organisms, who by all common sense should take longer took so little during the explosion, yet today they are observed "evolving" at their usual snail pace?


really? What is your interpretation of genesis?
What is your intepretations of friut trees appearing before animals and before sunlight?
Just curious to know this one. :)
Before sunlight? No, before the sun was visible. Light could still get through the thick veil of gasses, it's just that the sun was not visible(I believe this site explains it in a great more detail, so I won't). I mean, cloudy days don't make day into night. ;) As for fruit trees, the wind does carry pollen you know... In addition, unless the bible gives specific examples of trees, you can't really use that as an example to "prove" me wrong. And by the way, I am not fighting evolution itself. Just the naturalist part. So the only thing that we really disagree on is whether mutations are random or divinely inspired.

That is your problem.

Anyway, do you think a human designer could trig a robot
some sort of intelligence?
Can your onnipotent god?
[Notice that in the thread there is no reference to the fact that a robot
should *spontaneously* evolve self-awarness. It just asks if a robot (designed or not)
can be self-aware. I said yes but I still miss your opinion about it.]
Depends what you consider intelligence? Systematic gathering and using information? Yes. True self awareness? No.
I already acknoledged that no one is capabe today of taking that challange.
This does not prove it to be impossible.


Universe age is not important. if you make enough tries in a second,
no matter how unlikely it is, you certainly can.
That is basic probability theory.

Unless the probability is exactly zero, for which you should provide very serious reasons.
Then you will forgive me if I use Flew's statement "The burden of proof lies on you". It is up to you to prove to me that an unobserved phenomenon is possible. You assume that the mind works a certain way, all based on physical properties(which is just assumption, since we're not even close to figuring out how the brain works), that we could reproduce that. This assumption implies that it has somehow been disproven that we are anything other than organic meatbags. I do not like making assumptions in science. The only way to settle this is for you to make a neural network in the image of Man's brain and have the robot display reasonable signs of sentience. Until then, you are the theist in the matter. ;)

One question I would like to raise to you. According to the probability theory of yours, if given enough time, anything remotely possible WILL HAPPEN if given enough time. Since something must have been around forever, let us assume it is the standard atheist multiverse. Why is it so hard to believe that such a multiverse could not eventually attain sentience? I even propose a model: Binary. The exact same "language" that a computer understands. Expanding universes=0, Contracting universes=1. Having been around forever, it is by no means absurd to assume that the harmony of such motion would result in intelligence. If you believe that within a limited ammount of time, we attained sentience, why can't the multiverse, which has had an unlimited ammount of time do the same? ;)




Just a god to filling the gaps in scientific models is, IN MY OPINION, not rational
since it push the problem one step up (to "how made god").
I know you don't allow that question, but I never understood why I shouldn't allow it.
Just wanted to answer this, even if it wasn't for me. Nobody made God. He has always been here. He is the innitial cause. Even if you don't believe in God, you have to admit SOMETHING must have always existed. We believe it was God.

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