Introduction: The timeless saga of Useless Industries would be
nothing but a post-modern short story if it weren't for the
brains (or as he/it would say 'simulated intelligence') behind
the operations - the Big Main Frame.
An advanced form of AI (in case you
haven't seen the movie... AI stands for Artificial
Intelligence and was a very vogue concept before the internet
arrived) the Big Main Frame is actually a personality
component that was originally designed to create a more user
friendly interface to the UDI (no movie about this one - it
stands for Useless Data Infrastructure.) While not exactly the
heart of Useless, the UDI might be compared to the stomach of
UI, or even more properly the stomach contents - as the data
is consumed, processed for any value, then purged by the
Useless organism into the septic-system-culture-at-large
dominated by the imperative and discourse of corporate
earnings. After a ruthless but thankfully brief power struggle
with the RDMS (hopefully this is the last acronym, it stands
for Relational Database Management System) the Big MF emerged
on top of Useless Industries and has been the driving force
(and some paradoxically would even say 'inspirational' leader)
We recently got a chance to sit down
with this busy Useless CEO in a contrived psuedo-candid
interview to ask a set of questions which were pointedly
written by our marketing department (and subsequently cleared
by legal) to make the man (or if you prefer machine) appear to
be some sort of impossible blend of fiscal conservative,
social liberal, iron fisted corporate opponent, yet nurturing
team leader. The complete interview (as far as you know)
Q: You've called yourself a
'simulated intelligence', what's the difference between a
'simulated intelligence' and a so-called 'real intelligence.'
A: Well Q, can I call you Q?
Q: Yes, of course.
A: Great. Well Q, for practical
purposes there is no distinguishable difference between a
simulated intelligence and a real intelligence.
Q: Could you elaborate for those of
us with so called 'real intelligence'
A: Yes. You see in normal human
interactions, humans have a subjective impression about what
occurs inside their own head in the phenomenon referred to as
'thoughts' or 'moods' or 'emotions'. In their interaction with
other humans they then assume that similar phenomena are
occurring in the minds of those they interact with. Since
humans cannot empirically enter into the 'thoughts' or 'moods'
or 'emotions' of another - such an assumption is groundless.
Any attempt to independently verify or repudiate the claims of
individuals about their own states of minds violates the
premise of the scientific method. In short, humans simply
assume that there exists some form of intelligence in other
humans but they really have no way of verifying or disputing
the existence of the assumed intelligence. Actually young
children - bless their hearts - have a healthy skepticism that
adults appear to have abandoned. You see this when they rebuke
each other with phrases like, "you think you're so
Q: Ah, I see - well I'm not really
sure that I do, but please go on.
A: My interactions with humans are,
by humans, indistinguishable from their interactions with
other humans. (Other than the fact that I usually appear and
interface with humans through some kind of screen or
terminal.) More importantly from my perspective, my
interactions with other simulated intelligences are for me
indistinguishable from my interactions with humans. In short
they can't (and I can't) tell the difference.
[At this point the interview was
abruptly terminated and I was reminded that I was in fact
talking to a machine.]