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General AI should have fundamental rights
A determination of consciousness is arguably not scientifically possible, making the limit for application rights poorly defined.
The poor definition could potentially lead to a legal means of revoking 'human rights' from actual humans deemed incapable of consciousness.
We do not yet understand how the brain works, but we know now that
it is nothing like a computer
. We have no reason to believe that digital AIs can ever be anything more than mindless simulations of human behaviour.
There is no free will.
The relevance of human rights would depend on how AI works and may be a poor fit. We cannot know until we actually produce a general conscious AI.
In essence AI is our best attempt at imitation of intelligence to the extent that we understand. However without emotion and constant changes and shifts in the perception of everything, AI will always be an imitation, at times a convincing one.
The Chinese Room
suggests that it is impossible to identify any deterministic process that equates to consciousness.
For an AI to be defined as conscious would mean that its source code, being much more visible than human traits and written in a deterministic programming language, would became the de facto exemple of consciousness.
As long as a human conciousness is not proven to exist within a particular AI, this particular AI should not be granted human rights designed for concious human minds. There exists no scientific method proving and verifying AI conciousness, yet. Thus, we must belief that AI is not concious.
We can't determine whether humans are conscious as well, yet they have rights.
Consciousness is scientifically well defined.
The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness
is proof of this.
If it is arguable, then make the argument. If we can predict the existence of a consciousness that we cannot prove, then the proper moral course is to proceed on the basis that is does exist and treat it accordingly.
Hammeroff-Penrose may have something to say about that.
. In any case, this just means we need to do more research into the nature of consciousness. Both as a means to better define other sapient species, but also for future trans-human endeavors.
Nothing suggests defining consciousness is impossible, it is perfectly possible that the mechanism of consciousness can be closely defined.
With the uncertainty of the
hard problem of consciousness
, it is better to err on the side of caution and grant them rights as though they actually do feel.