Difference between revisions of "Whole brain emulation"

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'''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 intelligent computers, as the only innovations necessary are greatly increased processor speed and scanning resolution. Advocates of Whole Brain Emulation claim technological improvement rates such as [[Moore's law]] will make WBE inevitable.  
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'''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'''.  
  
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. A possible means of brain scanning could be [[brain-computer interfaces]], if parts of one's mind were already digital or the equipment, in communicating with the brain, could be continuously scanning it. 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. The Singularity Institute believes that an uploaded mind could also pose an [[existential risk]].  
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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.
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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.
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Several approaches for WBE have been suggested:
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* 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>
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* [[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>
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* 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>
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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.
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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.
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An emulated-brain populated world could hold severe negative consequences, such as:
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*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>.
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*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>
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*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" />
  
A digitally emulated brain will have several huge advantages over a biological one. It will be able to directly modify the algorithms comprising it, add additional modules to itself, directly modify its goals, preferences, biases, and in general change anything it doesn't like about itself. A emulated brain will also be able to copy itself, communicate and cooperate with others perfectly, and have an indefinite life span. 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]], making unemployed vast amounts of people.
 
  
 
==See Also==
 
==See Also==
 
* [[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation]]
 
* [[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation]]
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* [[Emulation argument for human-level AI]]
 
* [[Simulation hypothesis]]
 
* [[Simulation hypothesis]]
 
* [[Neuromorphic AI]]
 
* [[Neuromorphic AI]]
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==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
 
* [http://www.amazon.com/The-Singularity-Is-Near-Transcend/dp/0143037889/ The Singularity is near: When humans transcend biology] by Ray Kurzweil
* [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.
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* [[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.jetpress.org/volume1/moravec.htm Hans Moravec's Estimation of Human Brain Processing Capacity]
* [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
 
 
* [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://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://www.transhumanist.com/volume1/moravec.htm When will computer hardware match the human brain?] by Hans Moravec, 1997
 
 
* [http://hanson.gmu.edu/uploads.html If Uploads Come First: The crack of a future dawn] by Robin Hanson
 
* [http://hanson.gmu.edu/uploads.html If Uploads Come First: The crack of a future dawn] by Robin Hanson
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* [http://intelligence.org/files/WBE-Superorgs.pdf Whole Brain Emulation and the Evolution of Superorganisms]
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* [http://wp.goertzel.org/?page_id=368 International Journal of Machine Consciousness Special Issue on Mind Uploading]
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* [http://www.sim.me.uk/neural/JournalArticles/Bamford2012IJMC.pdf A framework for approaches to transfer of a mind's substrate] by Sim Bamford
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* [http://www.xuenay.net/Papers/CoalescingMinds.pdf Coalescing Minds: Brain Uploading-related Group Mind Scenarios] by Kaj Sotala and Harri Valpola
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==References==
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{{Reflist|2}}

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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