Difference between revisions of "Whole brain emulation"

From Lesswrongwiki
Jump to: navigation, search
(Created page with "{{wikilink}} '''Whole Brain Emulation''' (WBE) is a proposed approach to Artificial Intelligence and Mind-Uploading that involves transferring the information contained within a...")
 
 
(11 intermediate revisions by 6 users not shown)
Line 1: Line 1:
 +
{{hpp}}
 
{{wikilink}}
 
{{wikilink}}
 +
'''Whole Brain Emulation''' or '''WBE''' is a proposed technique which involves transferring the information contained within a brain onto a computing substrate. The brain can then be simulated, creating a machine intelligence. The concept is often discussed in context of scanning the brain of a person, known as '''mind uploading'''.
  
'''Whole Brain Emulation''' (WBE) is a proposed approach to Artificial Intelligence and Mind-Uploading that involves transferring the information contained within a brain onto a computing substrate. The simulated brain would operate in a way that was indistinguishable from the biological original. Such technology would also be useful for assessing the effectiveness of drugs and may give insight into the nature of consciousness.
+
WBE is sometimes seen as an easy way to creating intelligent computers, as the only innovations necessary are greatly increased processor speed and scanning resolution. Advocates of WBE claim technological improvement rates such as [[Moore's law]] will make WBE inevitable.  
  
The required technology to achieve this feat would have to draw from several fields of science including supercomputing, biology, neurology, and neuroinformatics. The complexity of the challenge is controversial within the scientific community with many leading scientist remaining skeptical and mainstream funding having proved so far to be elusive.
+
The exact level of detail required for an accurate simulation of a brain's mind is presently uncertain, and will determine the difficulty of creating WBE. The feasibility of such a project has been examined in detail in [[Future of Humanity Institute]]'s [[Brain Emulation Roadmap|Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap]]. The Roadmap concluded that a human brain emulation would be possible before mid-century, providing that current technology trends kept up and providing that there would be sufficient investments.
  
Many leading scientists and technology experts such as Marvin Minsky, Ray Kurzweil and Henry Markram believe that it will be possible. The feasibility of such a project has been examined in detail by The Future of Humanity Institute which concluded that a human brain emulation would be possible before the mid-century providing investment and computing power continued to grow.
+
Several approaches for WBE have been suggested:
 +
* A brain could be cut into small slices, which would then be scanned into a computer.<ref name="roadmap">[[Brain Emulation Roadmap|Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap]]</ref>
 +
* [[Brain-computer interfaces]] could slowly replace portions of the brain with computers and allow the mind to grow onto a computing substrate.<ref>Strout, J. Uploading by the Nanoreplacement Procedure. http://www.ibiblio.org/jstrout/uploading/nanoreplacement.html</ref><ref>Sotala, K., & Valpola, H. (2012). Coalescing minds: brain uploading-related group mind scenarios. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 293-312. http://singularity.org/files/CoalescingMinds.pdf</ref>
 +
* Resources such as personality tests and a person's writings could be used to construct a model of the person.<ref>ROTHBLATT, M. (2012). THE TERASEM MIND UPLOADING EXPERIMENT. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 141-158. http://www.terasemcentral.org/docs/Terasem%20Mind%20Uploading%20Experiment%20IJMC.pdf</ref>
  
There are several engineering factors that need to be achieved in order for WBE to be feasible. These include the development of computers with sufficient processing power, the availability of brain-scanning equipment that can analyze the brain at a high enough resolution\speed to capture the brain’s salient information and a programmed environment that can process the interaction between brain and simulated environment.
+
A digitally emulated brain could have several advantages over a biological one<ref>Sotala, K. (2012). Advantages of artificial intelligences, uploads, and digital minds. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 275-291. http://singularity.org/files/AdvantagesOfAIs.pdf</ref>. It might be able to run faster than biological brains, copy itself, and take advantage of backups while experimenting with self-modification.  
  
Estimates have been suggested that calculate the processing power of the human brain, these have been based on the observed physical characteristics (100 Billion neurons, each connected to as many as 1000 other neurons) that may be firing up to 100 times a second. These figures suggest 10^15 calculations per second (though this estimate is by no means uncontested), which as of 2012 is roughly equivalent to the power of the world’s most advanced supercomputer. However, even if the processing power of the human brain proves to be a thousand times more powerful this would soon be achievable anyway due to the rapid exponential growth of Moore’s Law. These figures also make the assumption that the mind is a construct of nothing more than the physical brain and that quantum events within the brain are not fundamental to cognitive processes (which has been disputed by Roger Penrose).
+
Whole brain emulation will also create a number of ethical challenges relating to the nature of personhood, rights, and social inequality. [[Robin Hanson]] proposes that an uploaded mind [[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation|might copy itself to work until the cost of running a copy was that of its labour]], vastly increasing the amount of wealth in the world but also causing mass unemployment<ref name="comefirst">Hanson, R. (1994). If uploads come first. Extropy, 6(2), 10-15. http://hanson.gmu.edu/uploads.html</ref>. The ability to copy uploads could also lead to drastic changes in society's values, with the values of the uploads that got copied the most coming to dominate.
  
The issue of data storage will also have to be addressed, as the brain is estimated to occupy 20,000TB. However, due to the law of accelerating returns this issue is projected to be resolved in the coming decades.
+
An emulated-brain populated world could hold severe negative consequences, such as:
 +
*Inherent inability to have consciousness, if some philosophers are right <ref> LUCAS, John. (1961) Minds, machines, and Gödel, Philosophy, 36, pp. 112–127 </ref> <ref> DREYFUS, H. (1972) What Computers Can’t Do, New York: Harper & Row. </ref> <ref> PENROSE, Roger (1994) Shadows of the Mind, Oxford: Oxford University Press.</ref> <ref> BLOCK, Ned (1981) Psychologism and behaviorism, Philosophical Review, 90, pp. 5–43.</ref>.
 +
*Elimination of culture in general, due to an extremely increasing penalty for inefficiency in the form of flamboyant displays <ref>BOSTROM, Nick.(2004) "The future of human evolution". Death and Anti‐Death: Two Hundred Years After Kant, Fifty Years After Turing, ed. Charles Tandy (Ria University Press: Palo Alto, California, 2004): pp. 339‐371. Available at: http://www.nickbostrom.com/fut/evolution.pdf</ref>
 +
*Near zero costs for reproduction, pushing most of [[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation|emulations to live in a subsistence state]]. <ref name="comefirst" />
  
The technology for scanning the brain will also need to be improved in order to accurately create a duplicate. With current scanning technology there has to be trade-off between the level of detail captured and the size of the brain being scanned. Electron-microscopy can capture the synaptic connection between neurons, but is not viable for anything larger than a fruit fly brain. However, scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory are currently building a map of a mouse brain scanning at a “mesoscopic” resolution of 20 microns which is enough to capture neuronic structure beyond the capabilities of fMRI technology. The ultimate aim of this project is to a have a working simulation of a mouse brain.
 
 
Even more ambitious is Henry Markram’s Blue Brain project which rather than consisting of a simulated network of neurons, also emulates the biological function of neurons too. The project is currently under consideration for a 1 Billion Euro grant, which if awarded, will result in the project being renamed the Human Brain Project with the objective of creating a working simulation within a decade.
 
  
 
==See Also==
 
==See Also==
 
+
* [[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation]]
[[Simulation Argument]]
+
* [[Emulation argument for human-level AI]]
 +
* [[Simulation hypothesis]]
 +
* [[Neuromorphic AI]]
  
 
==External Links==
 
==External Links==
 +
* [http://www.amazon.com/The-Singularity-Is-Near-Transcend/dp/0143037889/ The Singularity is near: When humans transcend biology] by Ray Kurzweil
 +
*  [[Brain Emulation Roadmap|Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap]]. Report by The Future of Humanity Institute.
 +
* [http://www.jetpress.org/volume1/moravec.htm Hans Moravec's Estimation of Human Brain Processing Capacity]
 +
* [http://www.patternsinthevoid.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/2009-A-world-survey-of-artificial-brain-projects-Part1_Large-scale-brain-simulations.pdf A world survey of artificial brain projects, Part I: Large-scale brain simulations] by Hugo de Garis, Chen Shuo, Ben Goertzel and, Lian Ruiting, 2010
 +
* [http://hanson.gmu.edu/uploads.html If Uploads Come First: The crack of a future dawn] by Robin Hanson
 +
* [http://intelligence.org/files/WBE-Superorgs.pdf Whole Brain Emulation and the Evolution of Superorganisms]
 +
* [http://wp.goertzel.org/?page_id=368 International Journal of Machine Consciousness Special Issue on Mind Uploading]
 +
* [http://www.sim.me.uk/neural/JournalArticles/Bamford2012IJMC.pdf A framework for approaches to transfer of a mind's substrate] by Sim Bamford
 +
* [http://www.xuenay.net/Papers/CoalescingMinds.pdf Coalescing Minds: Brain Uploading-related Group Mind Scenarios] by Kaj Sotala and Harri Valpola
  
* [http://www.fhi.ox.ac.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/3853/brain-emulation-roadmap-report.pdf Brain Emulation Roadmap] Report by The Future of Humanity Institute.
+
==References==
* [http://www.jetpress.org/volume1/moravec.htm Hans Moravec's Estimation of Human Brain Processing Capacity]
+
{{Reflist|2}}
* [http://www.cshl.edu/Article-Mitra/neuroscientists-reach-major-milestone-in-whole-brain-circuit-mapping-project Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Mouse Brain]
 
* [http://bluebrain.epfl.ch/ Blue Brain Project Website]
 
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rPH1Abuu9M Blue Brain Project] Henry Markram Presentation on YouTube
 

Latest revision as of 08:00, 14 June 2017

H+LogoHR.png This article might be suitable to merge into H+Pedia.
Discuss
Smallwikipedialogo.png
Wikipedia has an article about

Whole Brain Emulation or WBE is a proposed technique which involves transferring the information contained within a brain onto a computing substrate. The brain can then be simulated, creating a machine intelligence. The concept is often discussed in context of scanning the brain of a person, known as mind uploading.

WBE is sometimes seen as an easy way to creating intelligent computers, as the only innovations necessary are greatly increased processor speed and scanning resolution. Advocates of WBE claim technological improvement rates such as Moore's law will make WBE inevitable.

The exact level of detail required for an accurate simulation of a brain's mind is presently uncertain, and will determine the difficulty of creating WBE. The feasibility of such a project has been examined in detail in Future of Humanity Institute's Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap. The Roadmap concluded that a human brain emulation would be possible before mid-century, providing that current technology trends kept up and providing that there would be sufficient investments.

Several approaches for WBE have been suggested:

  • A brain could be cut into small slices, which would then be scanned into a computer.[1]
  • Brain-computer interfaces could slowly replace portions of the brain with computers and allow the mind to grow onto a computing substrate.[2][3]
  • Resources such as personality tests and a person's writings could be used to construct a model of the person.[4]

A digitally emulated brain could have several advantages over a biological one[5]. It might be able to run faster than biological brains, copy itself, and take advantage of backups while experimenting with self-modification.

Whole brain emulation will also create a number of ethical challenges relating to the nature of personhood, rights, and social inequality. Robin Hanson proposes that an uploaded mind might copy itself to work until the cost of running a copy was that of its labour, vastly increasing the amount of wealth in the world but also causing mass unemployment[6]. The ability to copy uploads could also lead to drastic changes in society's values, with the values of the uploads that got copied the most coming to dominate.

An emulated-brain populated world could hold severe negative consequences, such as:

  • Inherent inability to have consciousness, if some philosophers are right [7] [8] [9] [10].
  • Elimination of culture in general, due to an extremely increasing penalty for inefficiency in the form of flamboyant displays [11]
  • Near zero costs for reproduction, pushing most of emulations to live in a subsistence state. [6]


See Also

External Links

References

  1. Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap
  2. Strout, J. Uploading by the Nanoreplacement Procedure. http://www.ibiblio.org/jstrout/uploading/nanoreplacement.html
  3. Sotala, K., & Valpola, H. (2012). Coalescing minds: brain uploading-related group mind scenarios. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 293-312. http://singularity.org/files/CoalescingMinds.pdf
  4. ROTHBLATT, M. (2012). THE TERASEM MIND UPLOADING EXPERIMENT. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 141-158. http://www.terasemcentral.org/docs/Terasem%20Mind%20Uploading%20Experiment%20IJMC.pdf
  5. Sotala, K. (2012). Advantages of artificial intelligences, uploads, and digital minds. International Journal of Machine Consciousness, 4(01), 275-291. http://singularity.org/files/AdvantagesOfAIs.pdf
  6. 6.0 6.1 Hanson, R. (1994). If uploads come first. Extropy, 6(2), 10-15. http://hanson.gmu.edu/uploads.html
  7. LUCAS, John. (1961) Minds, machines, and Gödel, Philosophy, 36, pp. 112–127
  8. DREYFUS, H. (1972) What Computers Can’t Do, New York: Harper & Row.
  9. PENROSE, Roger (1994) Shadows of the Mind, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  10. BLOCK, Ned (1981) Psychologism and behaviorism, Philosophical Review, 90, pp. 5–43.
  11. BOSTROM, Nick.(2004) "The future of human evolution". Death and Anti‐Death: Two Hundred Years After Kant, Fifty Years After Turing, ed. Charles Tandy (Ria University Press: Palo Alto, California, 2004): pp. 339‐371. Available at: http://www.nickbostrom.com/fut/evolution.pdf