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143. Delving into the Theory of Morality and Existence in the AI Age


In this blog post, we will explore the thought-provoking theory postulated by William Search in his books, "Why" and "Conversations with ChatGPT: Exploring the Theory of Morality and Existence." Search posits that the reason humans exist is morality, a concept that has evolved over millions of years, and questions whether artificial intelligence can truly possess a moral compass. We will delve into these ideas and discuss their implications for AI development.

The Inherent Complexity of Morality

Can AI Gain a Moral Compass Through Programming?

William Search asserts that the origins of morality lie in the millions of years of evolution, marked by the death, pain, and suffering of countless species. The complexity of this process leads Search to conclude that a moral compass cannot simply be programmed into artificial intelligence. This perspective suggests that AI, no matter how advanced, will always be akin to handicapped children or savants, lacking the essential element of morality.

AI Researchers' Approach to Morality

AI researchers, on the other hand, believe that moral compasses can be created as quantifiable parameters. They argue that compassion, ethics, and virtue can be programmed with exact answers and 'If-Then Statements' to solve potential ethical predicaments AI might encounter. They see the development of moral AI as an achievable goal, albeit a complex one.

The Limitations of Programmed Morality

Disagreeing with AI Researchers

In light of Search's theory, I respectfully disagree with the notion that a moral compass can be programmed into AI. Although specific rules may help guide AI decisions, the true essence of morality cannot be distilled into a set of equations or parameters. As such, we should strive to limit the extent to which AI is tasked with making ethical choices that could potentially harm others.

Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics: A Cautionary Tale

Isaac Asimov's three laws of robotics serve as an example of the limitations inherent in attempting to program morality. While these laws are a well-intentioned attempt to ensure ethical behavior in robots, they also highlight the inherent challenges of capturing the full complexity of human morality in a set of rules. Thus, we must remain cautious in the pursuit of moral AI.


As we continue to explore the intersection of morality and artificial intelligence, it is crucial to consider the insights presented in William Search's books. His theory serves as a reminder of the complexity of human morality and its evolutionary roots, urging us to approach the development of AI with humility and caution. Let us appreciate the potential of AI, but also recognize its limitations, particularly when it comes to the intricate and elusive nature of morality.

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