Minds and Machines 25 (3):231-246 (2015)
AbstractAn advanced artificial intelligence could pose a significant existential risk to humanity. Several research institutes have been set-up to address those risks. And there is an increasing number of academic publications analysing and evaluating their seriousness. Nick Bostrom’s superintelligence: paths, dangers, strategies represents the apotheosis of this trend. In this article, I argue that in defending the credibility of AI risk, Bostrom makes an epistemic move that is analogous to one made by so-called sceptical theists in the debate about the existence of God. And while this analogy is interesting in its own right, what is more interesting are its potential implications. It has been repeatedly argued that sceptical theism has devastating effects on our beliefs and practices. Could it be that AI-doomsaying has similar effects? I argue that it could. Specifically, and somewhat paradoxically, I argue that it could amount to either a reductio of the doomsayers position, or an important and additional reason to join their cause. I use this paradox to suggest that the modal standards for argument in the superintelligence debate need to be addressed.
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References found in this work
The Problem of Evil and Some Varieties of Atheism.William L. Rowe - 1979 - American Philosophical Quarterly 16 (4):335 - 341.
The Wisdom to Doubt: A Justification of Religious Skepticism.J. L. Schellenberg - 2007 - Cornell University Press.
Skeptical Theism: New Essays.Trent Dougherty & Justin P. McBrayer (eds.) - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
19 The Problem of Evil and Some Varieties of Atheism.William Rowe - 1979 - In Eleonore Stump & Michael J. Murray (eds.), Philosophy of Religion: The Big Questions. Blackwell. pp. 6--157.
Citations of this work
Ethics of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics.Vincent C. Müller - 2020 - In Edward Zalta (ed.), Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Palo Alto, Cal.: CSLI, Stanford University. pp. 1-70.
Discourse analysis of academic debate of ethics for AGI.Ross Graham - forthcoming - AI and Society:1-14.
Foundations of an Ethical Framework for AI Entities: The Ethics of Systems.Andrej Dameski - 2020 - Dissertation, University of Luxembourg
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