emberleo: A circular knotwork phoenix (phoenix)
Ember ([personal profile] emberleo) wrote2013-07-14 01:49 pm
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Philosophical Questions Meme

Viked from SongCoyote:

1. Would you rather be deaf or mute?

Uh, no? I mean, I know from experience that I can cope with mute for a few days at a time, so I guess if I had to choose, I'd go for mute...

2. If you're a writer or an artist, which is more important to you: the purity of your expression or the impact it has on your readers or viewers?

It varies depending on the project, to be honest. If there was a feeling of divine inspiration, then it's the purity of the expression - how true to the inspiration was I? If I'm doing something for an audience, which I often am, then the impact matters quite a lot, and I want to know if I'm getting the content across as I intend, or how I can improve.

3. Under what circumstances, if any, is a group of people morally justified in taking an action that an individual would not be morally justified in taking?

Due Process, I suppose. Vigilante justice from a group is no better and arguably worse than vigilante justice from an individual. Most of the time I don't consider groups to have more rights collectively than each individual in the group has, but there are some contexts where it matters, I suppose.

4. Are there any types of people that you really, truly hate? If so, what motivates them and how is it different from and how is it similar to what motivates you?

I do my best to avoid hate entirely, actually.

But, as my father says, I'm very intolerant of intolerance.

5. War, huh, yeah, what is it good for?

*Cynical* Reducing the population until it no longer exceeds available resources.

*Idealistic* Conveying to oppressors how important it is that they stop being oppressors, and that there are real and lasting consequences if they don't.

6. Do you think you could raise another person's child with as much love and devotion as you could for a child of your own blood?

Love and devotion are not measurable. Were I in a position to be raising a child, they would have the same resources from me regardless of where they came from.

I strongly prefer to reproduce myself. I do not consider adoption an alternative, I consider it a non-sequitur.

Intellectually there's no difference in the value of two children in my care, one family by blood, the other family by spirit. I know that, and I truly believe that. The children of my beloved friends are deeply important to me, for example, and I guard them fiercely when I'm not caught up short with worry that I'm stepping on my friends' parenting toes.

But I also know that my instincts don't adhere to my ideals, and my *body* knows when I smell my sister's children that THESE CHILDREN ARE MINE, and I have never had that experience holding any of my step-sister's children, who are, in theory, equally mine, but not biologically related to me.

So I can guess that I do indeed have a deep, instinctual bias. But I can hope that my ethics would thoroughly override that bias, and I have been told that I am pathologically fair-minded.

7. What are the fundamental differences between computer intelligence and human intelligence?

Right now, we don't have ways for computers to really learn things, as far as I know. Gather information, yes, correlate it, yes, identify places where the patterns match patterns already given, sometimes. But not really come up with new ideas in response to that data, nor notice new patterns without something specific to compare them to.

Natural intelligence (not just humans!) functions differently than mechanical intelligence, and will continue to do so until we can get to a point where we can mimic the emergent properties of biology.

I don't trust that we'll never get there, and I presume that if we ever do, we'll find that you can't have true thought without feeling. We are in no danger of producing dispassionate machines that have sentience but no emotion, IMHO. We are in far more danger of producing deeply emotional machines that have passion but no empathy.

8. If your significant other was transformed into a FIM-style pony, how would that change your feelings for and relationship with him/her/hir?

Um, I'm fond of MLP, but actual physical transformation would put a damper on our relationship, as his lack of hands would make him really bad at most of what makes him really happy right now, and I'm not into trans-species romance...

9. Under what circumstances would you commit treason?

Treason is a form of oathbreaking. I break oaths when, and only when, NOT breaking the oath is a greater compromise of my ethics than breaking it - that is, when the circumstances compel me to consider adhering to my oath itself unethical.

And I would owe weregild.

10. I don't care whether your posted answers are true or not, but did you lie to yourself when answering any of these questions?

If I did, I didn't catch myself at it.

For some reason this last question irritates me, like suddenly the person who wrote the questions is stepping in to demand things of me they have no right to demand. Who the fuck are they to test whether I am sufficiently introspective? Let me guess, you're the kind of person who trolls people to make sure they're really thinking? Fuck that.

songcoyote: (Default)

[personal profile] songcoyote 2013-07-14 09:21 pm (UTC)(link)
Interesting answers, with some real similarities and significant differences from my own. But then, that's the whole point, neh?

I completely understand your irritation at #10, though my own reaction isn't as strong. Even though it's not directly accusatory it feels somewhat that way anyway. Darned passive-aggressive question writers grumble mumble....

Anyway, thanks for sharing your responses, and have a great day!

Light and laughter,
jensurvivor: One for Jen (Default)

[personal profile] jensurvivor 2013-07-19 02:17 pm (UTC)(link)
Couple thoughts,

I remember reading in some unremembered sources that human reproduction response to war and disaster. We made up our numbers from the first World War in one generation. It's not an effective means of population reduction, at least, not the way we do it.

I heard from a friend who is knowlegeable in AI that emergent properties were discovered in computers searching the internet for things. I forget the example x(