Browsing All Posts filed under »James DiGiovanna«

Post-Truth Debate and Critical Thinking

July 4, 2017 by

3

“Look it up” should be a good response to a dispute about matters of fact where a correct answer already exists. This is why bars used to keep sports record books handy; bets could be solved quickly and conclusively. But “look it up” relies not only on there existing a source of (largely) correct information, […]

On Hope, Truth, and Lying

February 1, 2017 by

Comments Off on On Hope, Truth, and Lying

The Trump administration is, for those of us concerned with improving our world, more disturbing than any I have encountered. It’s not that Trump will necessarily make things worse than G.W. Bush, who started two wars, or Ronald Reagan, who began our slide into a society of increasing inequality, or even Barack Obama, who persecuted […]

The Politics of Crybabyism

November 29, 2016 by

2

Perhaps Donald Trump’s most salient psychological characteristic is his tendency to complain loudly and publicly if he does not get his way: that is, his tendency to be a crybaby. So why, then, is he so popular with his supporters? Weren’t they the ones who hated the culture of offense, the sensitiveness that was forcing […]

Programmable Friends

June 18, 2016 by

6

While robots were originally conceived of as laborers, advances in AI and emotional modeling have led to “companion robots” like Aldebaran’s Pepper and Intelligent Systems Co.’s Paro. But a companion is fundamentally unlike a standard worker[1]: labor is by its nature fungible, and companions, if we understand companions as something like friends, are, presumably, non-fungible. Workers […]

Responsibility, Identity and Artificial Beings: Persons, Supra-Persons, and Para-Persons

June 2, 2016 by

11

  Thanks to Justin Caouette for inviting me to the blog. I’ll start with a bit that draws ideas from a paper I’m working on for a book on Robot Ethics: The standard criteria for personhood are not obviously inherently impossible for AIs to obtain: they could be self-conscious, they could regard others as persons, they could […]