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[Franc28] Data versus C-3PO

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Who would talk the ears off of a Gundark (or Ferrengi) first?
Data 36%  36%  [ 12 ]
C-3PO 64%  64%  [ 21 ]
Total votes : 33
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Purple
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-06 01:34pm 

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Joined: 2010-04-20 08:31am
Posts: 2492
Location: In a purple cube orbiting this planet. Hijacking satellites for an internet connection.
I find it interesting how, like most of my adversaries Franc28 fallows a predictable patten of behavior.

First he attacks me instead of my point using such vague terms like "normal humans" and making claims that he newer even attempts to backs up. Than he has ignores this when pointed out to him. And finally he fallows up on this by presenting no further points of his own other than: "It must be evil because of ..." Well actually it seems that the point really ends there. There is no because to it. He fails to provide any reason or justification for it at all. And quite honestly I do believe that tells us that he is incapable of supporting his point with anything other than his personal feelings.

Hence I do believe it is fair to conclude that my point still stands until contested by someone actually capable of doing so.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-06 05:51pm 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
I was not "contesting your point." Technically, I am not disputing that you really do believe that slavery is ethical and that the only valid form of moral evaluation is a conscience-less, principle-less cost-benefit analysis (although personally I very much doubt that you actually do). All I am saying is that you are not talking about morality or ethics as most of us see it. Therefore what you are saying is not relevant to most of us. Few people see other people in such a calculating way as you do.

Your argument may very well be correct- from your perspective. But from my perspective, it is absolutely irrelevant. I'm pretty sure most people will agree with me that slavery is unethical regardless of the circumstance. This is not a feeling, it's an ethical principle, based on my conscience and my beliefs about other people- things which apparently (if your posts are honest) you do not have the capacity to understand, or refuse to understand.
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Purple
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-06 09:01pm 

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Joined: 2010-04-20 08:31am
Posts: 2492
Location: In a purple cube orbiting this planet. Hijacking satellites for an internet connection.
Again, you are ignoring the point. Instead you are making an appeal to emotions. "Oh it iz so evilz because I think so and everyone must agree with me!" You are purposefully failing to provide facts and evidence and instead are constantly claiming that what you say is true because you are saying it.

Honestly, either learn proper debating or stay out of debates. The sort of behavior you are doing now is the debating equivalent of acting like a school child and shouting: "Oh yes it is!" and than waiting for someone to reply: "Oh no it's not!"

Even in this thread we have other people, not just me who disagree with you. Darth Hoth, Batman they both point out the problems with your argument. Darth Hoth even pointed out the same thing I am.

So unless you can provide any factual evidence or explanation for your claims give up.
At this point you really are not contributing anything worth while to this conversation other than your personal opinion. And you know how much that is worth to the universe.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-07 09:15am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
Given that fact, for the purposes of the discussion, is there any functional difference between enslaving a sapient being and creating a sapient being with a hard-wired high-level purpose? And if so, what is it?

Batman beat me to the punch with his response, which was pretty close to what I would have said.

Batman wrote:
Err-yes? That'd be the part were the ordinary sapient being would chafe at being made to do a job it doesn't like, while the hardwired one would be perfectly okay with that and possibly even happy to do that job but suffer if prevented from doing it?

I do have a little more to add, however.
A point that seems to be being missed is that we already have nonsentient robots in slavery right now. If we could make, say, a robot welder sentient so it could enjoy it's job (with hardwiring to ensure it did enjoy it), wouldn't that be nicer for it? As opposed to not being self-aware at all? We didn't need to make the robot sentient, but that's exactly why I draw a distinction between living and robotic slaves. Sentience is a privelage for droids, not a birthright. Any living sentient slave was going to be sentient whether they were enslaved or born into slavery.
Perhaps the bone of contention here is the morality of creating a sentient droid for anything besides the sake of the exercise (eg. Data- he was an experiment in android sentience).

The Vortex Empire wrote:
I would say yes, it still does apply. If a woman and I make a baby with the sole intention of using it for slave labor, and raise the child in such a way as to make it obey us unquestioningly, that's still wrong even though the child was purpose-made for slavery.

My above ranting should explain why I feel there is a difference between this and droid-slavery. Though I should add I think this example would probably score badly on Purple's point-evaluation morality system.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-07 04:53pm 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Darth Tedious wrote:
Franc28 wrote:
Given that fact, for the purposes of the discussion, is there any functional difference between enslaving a sapient being and creating a sapient being with a hard-wired high-level purpose? And if so, what is it?

Batman beat me to the punch with his response, which was pretty close to what I would have said.


Then consider yourself answered as well by my subsequent post...
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-08 02:18am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
Then consider yourself answered as well by my subsequent post...

I would, except...

I wrote:
I do have a little more to add, however.

You didn't address any of the other stuff I said.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-08 03:48am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
As far as I could tell, you were addressing Batman, not me. However, you seem to be implying that you were also addressing me. In that case, I will answer.

"A point that seems to be being missed is that we already have nonsentient robots in slavery right now."

Slavery implies a person that is being enslaved. What personhood does a robot welder have? As far as I have read on the subject in the past, I think it is widely agreed that for an organism to be called a person, it must be a conscious and thinking being, it must perform self-motivated activities, it must be able to communicate with others. We do not call robot welders persons because they were not made with those capacities (unlike, for instance, dolphins, chimpanzees, or human beings).


"If we could make, say, a robot welder sentient so it could enjoy it's job (with hardwiring to ensure it did enjoy it), wouldn't that be nicer for it? As opposed to not being self-aware at all?"

Well now you are simply begging the question of slavery in the first place, in that your evaluation (that "it would be nice") implies that it is not in fact slavery (in which case it most definitely would not "be nice").


"Sentience is a privelage for droids, not a birthright. Any living sentient slave was going to be sentient whether they were enslaved or born into slavery."

You seem to be contradicting yourself in two consecutive sentences. First you say sentience is not a birthright for droids, then you state that they would be sentient by birth either way. Which is it?


"Perhaps the bone of contention here is the morality of creating a sentient droid for anything besides the sake of the exercise (eg. Data- he was an experiment in android sentience)."

Well, I agree that it is a bone of contention, yes. I don't know if it's the bone of contention, but if you want to debate that, that's fine.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-08 08:31am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
As far as I could tell, you were addressing Batman, not me. However, you seem to be implying that you were also addressing me. In that case, I will answer.

I was indeed addressing you.

Franc28 wrote:
"A point that seems to be being missed is that we already have nonsentient robots in slavery right now."

Slavery implies a person that is being enslaved. What personhood does a robot welder have? As far as I have read on the subject in the past, I think it is widely agreed that for an organism to be called a person, it must be a conscious and thinking being, it must perform self-motivated activities, it must be able to communicate with others. We do not call robot welders persons because they were not made with those capacities (unlike, for instance, dolphins, chimpanzees, or human beings).

I'm not opposed to what you're saying here, but must ask: Do you think it is possible to be cruel to a non-sapient animal? If your answer is yes, I must also ask: How is it any different for a non-sapient robot?
Franc 28 wrote:
"If we could make, say, a robot welder sentient so it could enjoy it's job (with hardwiring to ensure it did enjoy it), wouldn't that be nicer for it? As opposed to not being self-aware at all?"

Well now you are simply begging the question of slavery in the first place, in that your evaluation (that "it would be nice") implies that it is not in fact slavery (in which case it most definitely would not "be nice").

That's part of what I am asking. Is a robot ever really a slave?
Data, for all of his humanity and want to be considered equal, was merely a slave to his core programming. Part of his expression of that was to not want to be treated like a 'slave'.
C-3PO OTOH, was programmed to want to be an interpreter. He is designed to enjoy his work. He takes great pride in being fluent in over 6 million forms of communication (just ask him). He is still able to comprehend where he is, worry about those he has relationships with, dislike space travel, and even have pleasant experiences (eg. "This oil bath is going to feel so good!").
Franc28 wrote:
"Sentience is a privelage for droids, not a birthright. Any living sentient slave was going to be sentient whether they were enslaved or born into slavery."

You seem to be contradicting yourself in two consecutive sentences. First you say sentience is not a birthright for droids, then you state that they would be sentient by birth either way. Which is it?

Okay, you've completely missed what I was saying there. I did not contradict myself. I was talking about two different things.
1)Sentience is not a birthright for droids. They are not born.
2)Living sentient beings are not robots. Robots are not, by definition, living beings.
One sentence was about living slaves, the other was about robots.
Robot 'slaves' only have sentience because it allows them to better do their job (by being able to act and react dynamically to situations, and not get bogged down by strict or overly complex programming). And it has the added benefit of allowing them to enjoy their work, instead of feeling nothing at all.

As for what the debate is really about, it's probably a mix of:
Are robots ever really slaves?
Is it ethical to make sentient robots?
Are sentient robots any more or less slaves than non-sentient ones?
But most importantly of all- Who the fuck would everyone rather have on their spaceship out of Data and C-3PO???
I really want more people to answer my question from the OP! This thread was meant to be for fun! Not a fucking discourse on robot ethics! :banghead:
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-08 04:52pm 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Quote:
I'm not opposed to what you're saying here, but must ask: Do you think it is possible to be cruel to a non-sapient animal? If your answer is yes, I must also ask: How is it any different for a non-sapient robot?


Personally I define cruelty as a property of the agent, not of the target, but it seems that the term is defined by the needless infliction of pain. If the latter is correct, then the answer is yes, one can be cruel to a non-sapient animal. However, I am not aware of any non-sapient robot that can feel pain, so the analogy does not work on those grounds.


Quote:
That's part of what I am asking. Is a robot ever really a slave?


A robot welder, as it exists, is not a slave because it is not a person. But certainly it is possible for robots to be slaves. In case you missed it, this has been a major theme in science-fiction, including Star Trek.


Quote:
Data, for all of his humanity and want to be considered equal, was merely a slave to his core programming. Part of his expression of that was to not want to be treated like a 'slave'.


So what? Are you making an argument from some magical free will? Human beings also have a core programming, so this is not helpful to the discussion.


Quote:
C-3PO OTOH, was programmed to want to be an interpreter. He is designed to enjoy his work. He takes great pride in being fluent in over 6 million forms of communication (just ask him). He is still able to comprehend where he is, worry about those he has relationships with, dislike space travel, and even have pleasant experiences (eg. "This oil bath is going to feel so good!").


Then I think you have marshalled enough facts to prove that it is sapient. Do you disagree?


Quote:
Okay, you've completely missed what I was saying there. I did not contradict myself. I was talking about two different things.
1)Sentience is not a birthright for droids. They are not born.
2)Living sentient beings are not robots. Robots are not, by definition, living beings.


Whoa, whoa, whoa. What? Is this whole discussion really reducing to organo-centrism? Just because they are made of different materials, they cannot by definition be alive? Even if, for example, they are identical in all other ways to human beings, as Data is? That is extremely bigoted rhetoric. "By definition," alien beings also cannot be alive, if they are not made of the exact same carbon-based matrix that we are, by your definition.


Quote:
Robot 'slaves' only have sentience because it allows them to better do their job (by being able to act and react dynamically to situations, and not get bogged down by strict or overly complex programming).


Human beings only have sentience because it gave them evolutionary advantage given their social and ecosystemic environment, making them able to act and react dynamically to situations.

So what? We've already established you're organo-centric, so there's no point in continuing this line of inquiry. Our discussion has already been reduced to bigotry.


Quote:
But most importantly of all- Who the fuck would everyone rather have on their spaceship out of Data and C-3PO???
I really want more people to answer my question from the OP! This thread was meant to be for fun! Not a fucking discourse on robot ethics! :banghead:


I dunno, did you really expect people to just stand idly while unethical statements were made? As I understand it, fun is usually achieved by mindless things. When you start making people think, fun goes out the window, whether you like it or not.

My answer is Data, if only because I could communicate with him and he could help me build a conceptual understanding of whatever situation I find myself in, and he can also help in material issues. C-3PO, on the other hand, is a protocol droid, which is a somewhat narrower range of skills, and its personality is rather grating.
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Darth Hoth
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-09 10:14am 

Jedi Council Member


Joined: 2008-02-15 10:36am
Posts: 2319
Franc28 wrote:
So what? Are you making an argument from some magical free will? Human beings also have a core programming, so this is not helpful to the discussion.


Would you elaborate? A typical robot/computer in sci-fi has its personality purposely designed by its creator to be whatever he wants it to be. Since you appear to be a staunch materialist, you obviously do not think the same is true for human beings. Or can parents hardwire some "laws of robotics" into a child before it is born?

Quote:
Whoa, whoa, whoa. What? Is this whole discussion really reducing to organo-centrism? Just because they are made of different materials, they cannot by definition be alive? Even if, for example, they are identical in all other ways to human beings, as Data is? That is extremely bigoted rhetoric. "By definition," alien beings also cannot be alive, if they are not made of the exact same carbon-based matrix that we are, by your definition.


So how do you define "life" in your non-bigoted way? Be advised that whatever you say, it will run the risk of nitpickery.

Quote:
So what? We've already established you're organo-centric, so there's no point in continuing this line of inquiry. Our discussion has already been reduced to bigotry.


I believe the discussion was "reduced" the moment you came stomping in and declared that your opinion was "fact" and everyone who disagreed with you did so out of simple sociopathy.

I reiterate my question from before, to which you chose not to reply: Can you in any way argue logically for your position on slavery* (or anything else, for that matter) rather than merely restate your own feelings as axiomatic truths?
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-09 11:35pm 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
Just because they are made of different materials, they cannot by definition be alive? Even if, for example, they are identical in all other ways to human beings, as Data is? That is extremely bigoted rhetoric. "By definition," alien beings also cannot be alive, if they are not made of the exact same carbon-based matrix that we are, by your definition.

I never gave my definition of life, but here's a hint: The materials involved have nothing to do with the issue of being alive.
I define life the same way biologists do. To qualify as a form of life, something must demonstrate the following:
Movement
Respiration
Sensitivity
Nutrition
Excretion
Reproduction
Growth

Let's address your claim that Data is identical in "all other ways" to a human.

*He moves- check.

*He does not respire. He imitates the action of breathing, but does not need to, and can survive just fine in a vacuum.

*Although he is able to notice when he has been damaged, he does not feel pain (with the exception of the Borg Queen's work on him, which was temporary). He has no nervous response. Some droids in SW have actually demonstrated an inherent ability to feel pain. Data has not.

*He does not require nutrition for energy. He drinks lubricant as a form of self-maintenance, but this is not nutrition. His energy comes from a perpetual motion handwave that Dr. Soong incorporated into his design.

*He does not excrete.

*He is argualby incapable of reproduction. Although he built Lal, no actual part of him was used in making her- she was not his 'flesh and blood'. Just for arguement's sake, let's say this did count as reproduction (even though it's highly debatable).

*He does not grow. His legs were exactly 87.2 centimeters long, they always were, and continued to be until his destruction.

That's two criteria met out of seven. And one of those is not certain. So how exactly is Data identical in every way (besides carbon-matrix) to a human?
Just for the record, I do define non-carbon based aliens as life if they meet these criteria. Next time, try to build a better strawman.
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Sela
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-10 01:44am 

Padawan Learner


Joined: 2009-01-04 11:01pm
Posts: 248
Just to nitpick, respiration doesn't mean breathing. Respiration is the exchange of waste products for nutrients. Or the exchange of nutrients for energy. Bottom-line: If your organism is capable of energy-in:waste-out, that's respiration. I emphasize this, because at a cellular level we refer to cells as "respiring" even though the idea that they're breathing is ludicrous.

And unless Data violates thermodynamics, I'm pretty sure he respires. Wasn't there a line at some point about his energy cells continually renewing themselves?


Also, sensitivity surely means "sensorium" rather than "pain-sensation", yes? Otherwise amoeba and other one-celled organisms would have a hard time qualifying.

Also, isn't one of the key points about plants that they *AREN'T* motile? Now I know that plants are alive.

Also, Data is pretty explicit that he used actual parts of himself when building Lal, near as I recall. And that later (after her systems failure) he re-incorporated parts into himself. That's growing and reproducing. Granted, not in the way we usually think of them; but for a 100% robotic organism, what could be more "growth" than taking raw materials, turning them into chips, and adding them to yourself? Like the emotion chip.


This is all purely an aside - not my attempt to weigh in on the discussion. Just pointing out that either your understanding of these criteria for "what constitutes life" is flawed, or the criteria themselves are flawed (as we'd have to exclude unicellular life and plant life). I say it has no bearing since you only need disprove one, and the fact that Data has no need for nutrition is sufficient to rule out the others.

Though in-universe, it merely means that the definition of 'life' is too narrow - a principle in the Star Trek universe since TOS.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-10 02:35am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
As Sela pointed out, your definition of "life" is far too narrow to accomodate the way we commonly use it. AFAIK, this is not a biology discussion; we're not arguing on the basis of the technical biological definition of "life." At least, I wasn't. I apologize if this was a misunderstanding.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-10 02:43am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Quote:
Would you elaborate? A typical robot/computer in sci-fi has its personality purposely designed by its creator to be whatever he wants it to be. Since you appear to be a staunch materialist, you obviously do not think the same is true for human beings. Or can parents hardwire some "laws of robotics" into a child before it is born?


What? I was talking about instincts and other biases hardwired in the human brain by evolution. I thought that was obvious, but I guess I should have stated so.


Quote:
So how do you define "life" in your non-bigoted way? Be advised that whatever you say, it will run the risk of nitpickery.


All attempts at definition run the risk of nitpickery. I'm gonna go with "self-motivated movement" as a simple and intuitive definition of "life." Nitpick away.


Quote:
I believe the discussion was "reduced" the moment you came stomping in and declared that your opinion was "fact" and everyone who disagreed with you did so out of simple sociopathy.


Excuse me? I never stated that everyone who disagreed with me was doing so out of sociopathy. I was referring to the specific complete position of one person.


Quote:
I reiterate my question from before, to which you chose not to reply: Can you in any way argue logically for your position on slavery* (or anything else, for that matter) rather than merely restate your own feelings as axiomatic truths?


You are willfully misrepresenting my position, which is dishonest. I have never stated my feelings as axiomatic truths. I have stated my instincts as being evidence, since in this case we are talking about something that is instinctual at its foundation (morality and ethics), so it is perfectly valid evidence. They can be verified or refuted by others, since as human beings we all share the same instincts. The scientific evidence on evolution and human nature backs my views on this.

Obviously, to answer your question personally would first require us to accept the same standards of ethics. I do not know if this is the case, but if you seriously don't see why slavery is ethically wrong, then this is probably not the case (and you may be a time traveler from the 18th century, or a troll, with the latter being slightly more probable). This is 2011, that debate is done with.
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Purple
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-10 10:31pm 

Jedi Council Member


Joined: 2010-04-20 08:31am
Posts: 2492
Location: In a purple cube orbiting this planet. Hijacking satellites for an internet connection.
Quote:
You are willfully misrepresenting my position, which is dishonest. I have never stated my feelings as axiomatic truths. I have stated my instincts as being evidence, since in this case we are talking about something that is instinctual at its foundation (morality and ethics), so it is perfectly valid evidence. They can be verified or refuted by others, since as human beings we all share the same instincts. The scientific evidence on evolution and human nature backs my views on this.

Well obviously we do not or we would not be having this discussion. I honestly can't believe I am coming back into this after I told my self I won't but what ever. The bottom line is that you keep wanking around the same thing and this is most tiresome.

Quote:
Obviously, to answer your question personally would first require us to accept the same standards of ethics. I do not know if this is the case, but if you seriously don't see why slavery is ethically wrong, then this is probably not the case (and you may be a time traveler from the 18th century, or a troll, with the latter being slightly more probable). This is 2011, that debate is done with.

And here you are saying what exactly? That if someone does not abide by your idea of right or wrong he must be a troll? Well at this point you are the one who is a troll. With that kind of attitude you won't last here for long. So either get a real argument or get the hell out.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-11 09:54am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Sela wrote:
This is all purely an aside - not my attempt to weigh in on the discussion. Just pointing out that either your understanding of these criteria for "what constitutes life" is flawed, or the criteria themselves are flawed (as we'd have to exclude unicellular life and plant life). I say it has no bearing since you only need disprove one, and the fact that Data has no need for nutrition is sufficient to rule out the others.

Though in-universe, it merely means that the definition of 'life' is too narrow - a principle in the Star Trek universe since TOS.
Though it is an aside, I must respond. You make some valid points (and some invalid ones, too.)
Quote:
Just to nitpick, respiration doesn't mean breathing. Respiration is the exchange of waste products for nutrients. Or the exchange of nutrients for energy. Bottom-line: If your organism is capable of energy-in:waste-out, that's respiration. I emphasize this, because at a cellular level we refer to cells as "respiring" even though the idea that they're breathing is ludicrous.

And unless Data violates thermodynamics, I'm pretty sure he respires. Wasn't there a line at some point about his energy cells continually renewing themselves?
I didn't mean to imply that breathing = respiration, I was pointing out that he imitates breathing in the context of debunking Data being 'virtually identical in all ways to a human'.
You somewhat oversimplify by saying that respiration is nutrients/energy in- waste out. That would be like metabolism, or the combination of nutrition, respiration and excretion. Though they do all go hand in hand.
Even at the cellular level, respiration is a function of chemical exchange- one which Soong androids apparently do not perform (evidenced by Lore staying in the vacuum of space for over 2 years).
Data does violate the laws of thermodynamics! The line you refer to is the very same perpetual motion handwave I already mentioned.
It came from Insurrection.
Data wrote:
My energy cells continuously recharge themselves.

Take special note he said recharge, not renew. That would imply perpetual motion, not respiration.
Quote:
Also, sensitivity surely means "sensorium" rather than "pain-sensation", yes? Otherwise amoeba and other one-celled organisms would have a hard time qualifying.
My bad. It actually means 'response to stimuli', which qualifies Data and the amoebas (who contract when touched). I got carried away with context- Data not feeling pain still makes him rather decidely un-humanlike. But at least he now scores 3 out of 7.
Quote:
Also, isn't one of the key points about plants that they *AREN'T* motile? Now I know that plants are alive.
A lot of the movement of plants is incorporated in their growth, but not all of it. Plants turn their leaves and flowers to face the sun throughout the day. Remember, these rules are thought of by biologists, who've put some time into the idea.
Quote:
Also, Data is pretty explicit that he used actual parts of himself when building Lal, near as I recall. And that later (after her systems failure) he re-incorporated parts into himself. That's growing and reproducing. Granted, not in the way we usually think of them; but for a 100% robotic organism, what could be more "growth" than taking raw materials, turning them into chips, and adding them to yourself? Like the emotion chip.
He did not use physical parts of himself. He copied sections of his neural net (which is the programming structure within his positronic brain) into Lal, and after her cascade failure he copied her memories into himself. That is data transfer, not growth. I can copy information from one hard drive to another, it doesn't mean it has grown. In the case of Lal/Data, it could be viewed as learning (which I would call different to growth). I have already granted reproduction as a met criteria, though it could be debated.
As for the emotion chip, it was a P&P modular component upgrade! Dr. Soong built it, and Data already had a socket in his brain for it. I can put an extra stick of RAM onto my motherboard, it hasn't grown in any way that would convince me it is alive.

Besides my blunder on 'response to stimuli' :oops: , my understanding of the criteria would seem to be sound- I already knew how plants me the requirements, you seemed to miss that one. :wink:
As for the criteria themselves being flawed, I am willing to make exceptions in the case of extremely unusual life forms (particularly energy-beings). I already do make such an exception for viruses. But Data is an android, and I do not file robots under 'life'.

Now to deal with a more pressing concern...
Franc28 wrote:
As Sela pointed out, your definition of "life" is far too narrow to accomodate the way we commonly use it. AFAIK, this is not a biology discussion; we're not arguing on the basis of the technical biological definition of "life." At least, I wasn't. I apologize if this was a misunderstanding.
Don't try to hide behind Sela's statement which I have just addressed. I used my definition of life to highlight the stupidity of your claim that Data is (excepting composite material) identical in every way to a human.
He doesn't eat. He doesn't shit. He doesn't breathe.
Identical to a human?
He doesn't sleep. He doesn't feel pain. He doesn't age (he simulates the visual effect of aging, but like his breathing, this is an imitation of a human characteristic)
Still just like a human in every way? Your statement was downright blatantly fucking idiotic.

Franc28 wrote:
I'm gonna go with "self-motivated movement" as a simple and intuitive definition of "life."

I'm sorry, weren't you agreeing with Sela? He contended that plants don't move, and thus aren't life by my definition. I've addressed that in this post, but I hadn't when you posted this. Please outline how your definition includes plants and unicellular life. Ameobas react on instinct, which (according to you) is not self-motivated but a result of evolution. Where do you draw the line? Because this vague description could even be taken to exclude non-sentient animals.

Franc28 wrote:
Quote:
Data, for all of his humanity and want to be considered equal, was merely a slave to his core programming. Part of his expression of that was to not want to be treated like a 'slave'.
So what? Are you making an argument from some magical free will? Human beings also have a core programming, so this is not helpful to the discussion.

Franc28 wrote:
Quote:
Would you elaborate? A typical robot/computer in sci-fi has its personality purposely designed by its creator to be whatever he wants it to be. Since you appear to be a staunch materialist, you obviously do not think the same is true for human beings. Or can parents hardwire some "laws of robotics" into a child before it is born?
What? I was talking about instincts and other biases hardwired in the human brain by evolution. I thought that was obvious, but I guess I should have stated so.

You seem to be saying that humans are not in fact sentient at all, but simply follow hardwired pre-determined instructions. Instict is OEM, biases and opinions are not (hint: people can change their opinions!). Again, your point on instinct actually weakens your definition of life. What is 'self-motivated' meant to mean?

Franc28 wrote:
You are willfully misrepresenting my position, which is dishonest. I have never stated my feelings as axiomatic truths. I have stated my instincts as being evidence, since in this case we are talking about something that is instinctual at its foundation (morality and ethics), so it is perfectly valid evidence. They can be verified or refuted by others, since as human beings we all share the same instincts. The scientific evidence on evolution and human nature backs my views on this.
No it doesn't. The fact that we have diametrically opposed views on the issue disproves what you're saying, as Purple pointed out. The fact that my views on other matters are different to Purple's disproves your point even further. Morality and ethics are not instinctual. They are matters of thought.

Franc28 wrote:
Obviously, to answer your question personally would first require us to accept the same standards of ethics. I do not know if this is the case, but if you seriously don't see why slavery is ethically wrong, then this is probably not the case (and you may be a time traveler from the 18th century, or a troll, with the latter being slightly more probable). This is 2011, that debate is done with.
Once again I remind you, this is not a debate on the 18th century issue of human slavery. This is about the unpaid labour of sentient robots which (last time I checked) haven't been invented yet.
Purple wrote:
And here you are saying what exactly? That if someone does not abide by your idea of right or wrong he must be a troll? Well at this point you are the one who is a troll. With that kind of attitude you won't last here for long. So either get a real argument or get the hell out.
I don't even think he's saying that. He's just trying to avoid giving a logical answer to the question, because he doesn't have one.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-11 04:37pm 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Quote:
Don't try to hide behind Sela's statement which I have just addressed. I used my definition of life to highlight the stupidity of your claim that Data is (excepting composite material) identical in every way to a human.
He doesn't eat. He doesn't shit. He doesn't breathe.
Identical to a human?
He doesn't sleep. He doesn't feel pain. He doesn't age (he simulates the visual effect of aging, but like his breathing, this is an imitation of a human characteristic)
Still just like a human in every way? Your statement was downright blatantly fucking idiotic.


I think you've made your point. Data is not identical to humans in "all other ways." That's fair enough. However, even your argument here is predicated on a definition of "life" which we are not discussing.


Quote:
I'm sorry, weren't you agreeing with Sela? He contended that plants don't move, and thus aren't life by my definition. I've addressed that in this post, but I hadn't when you posted this. Please outline how your definition includes plants and unicellular life.


... as you just answered in your own post, plants do move. So that's not an argument. And I don't know enough about the biology of bacteria or viruses to make any response at that level.


Quote:
Ameobas react on instinct, which (according to you) is not self-motivated but a result of evolution. Where do you draw the line? Because this vague description could even be taken to exclude non-sentient animals.


Wait, what? Instinct is not self-motivated but is a result of evolution? That's a non-sequitur. What does it being hardwired by evolution make it not self-motivated? The brain is part of the organism, obviously, so it is a "self-motivation."


Quote:
You seem to be saying that humans are not in fact sentient at all, but simply follow hardwired pre-determined instructions.


... no, I never said "humans are not sentient." That would be a fucking dumb opinion to hold. Of course we are sentient. But we are also hardwired. There is no contradiction between these two facts.


Quote:
Instict is OEM, biases and opinions are not (hint: people can change their opinions!).


Obviously.


Quote:
Again, your point on instinct actually weakens your definition of life. What is 'self-motivated' meant to mean?


I never said it was a precise definition. If you have a better one, which encompasses all the lifeforms we recognize as well as excludes objects we don't qualify as alive, then please present it.

Your dishonest tactics of trying to force me to answer Purple are noted. Are you a troll as well? If so, please tell me now so I can ignore you too.
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Purple
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-11 05:32pm 

Jedi Council Member


Joined: 2010-04-20 08:31am
Posts: 2492
Location: In a purple cube orbiting this planet. Hijacking satellites for an internet connection.
Franc28 wrote:
Your dishonest tactics of trying to force me to answer Purple are noted. Are you a troll as well? If so, please tell me now so I can ignore you too.

WHAT NOW!

This has gone on for too far. You are claiming that anyone who brings up a point you dislike is a troll.
Since when is it dishonest to expect people to read and respond to others addressing them? What is dishonest is you picking and choosing what to reply to and what to ignore.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-13 07:58am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
I think you've made your point. Data is not identical to humans in "all other ways." That's fair enough. However, even your argument here is predicated on a definition of "life" which we are not discussing.
Actually, the definition of life was pretty relevant. Especially after you said this:
Franc28 wrote:
Just because they are made of different materials, they cannot by definition be alive? Even if, for example, they are identical in all other ways to human beings, as Data is?
You tried to say that Data should be defined as alive because he's so much like a human. Which *newsflash* he isn't. The fact that I'm proving how unlike a human he is using the definition of life furthers my point.
Franc28 wrote:
Quote:
I'm sorry, weren't you agreeing with Sela? He contended that plants don't move, and thus aren't life by my definition. I've addressed that in this post, but I hadn't when you posted this. Please outline how your definition includes plants and unicellular life.
... as you just answered in your own post, plants do move. So that's not an argument.
I was pointing out that you had contradicted yourself by agreeing with Sela before I cleared up his misunderstanding.
Franc28 wrote:
And I don't know enough .about the biology of bacteria or viruses to make any response at that level.
Thanks for admitting that you have no fucking idea what you are talking about. Your definition of life is absolutely worthless if it doesn't cover things that we know are alive.
Franc28 wrote:
I never said it was a precise definition. If you have a better one, which encompasses all the lifeforms we recognize as well as excludes objects we don't qualify as alive, then please present it.
I already presented such a definition. The one that biologists use! You know, those "bigoted, organo-centric" science-guys who study life? :banghead:
Franc28 wrote:
Your dishonest tactics of trying to force me to answer Purple are noted.
Dishonest? Ex-fucking-cuse me? You were asked to provide one scrap of logical reasoning or factual evidence to support your worthless opinion, and you tried to dishonestly talk your way out of it. And it was Darth Hoth who asked you, not Purple. Check it out-
Darth Hoth wrote:
I reiterate my question from before, to which you chose not to reply: Can you in any way argue logically for your position on slavery* (or anything else, for that matter) rather than merely restate your own feelings as axiomatic truths?
You then accused him of trolling, which was what Purple was responding to. In fact you have accused nearly everyone here of trolling, all to try and worm your way out of answering a very reasonable request:
LOGIC OR GTFO!
Please explain (using logic) how unpaid robot labour is analogous to the slavery of humans. Or kindly fuck off. I wouldn't expect you to actually concede that you don't have a point.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-14 07:14am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Uh, no. No one said anything about "robot labor" being analogous to slavery. We were talking specifically about sapient beings. No one has made such a request, because it's ridiculous on its face. Try again.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-14 07:25am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
Sorry, I was unable to finish editing my post. Here is what I wanted to write:


Uh, no. No one said anything about "robot labor" being analogous to slavery. We were talking specifically about sapient beings. No one has made such a request, because it's ridiculous on its face.

It is obvious that the enslavement of a sapient being is the equivalent to the enslavement of another sapient being, in that it is an act of enslavement (replace "enslavement" with "forced labor," if you prefer). This much is obvious and beyond dispute. So your question is pretty trivial. The real question is: is any specific labor an act of forced labor? And this is what the debate has mostly hinged upon, so far. So we can examine whether this or that sapient robot (such as R2D2 or C3PO) is being "forced" to labor, whether their "happiness" is proof that they are not forced, etc etc. But that's all we can do.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-14 08:20am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Franc28 wrote:
The real question is: is any specific labor an act of forced labor? And this is what the debate has mostly hinged upon, so far.
It only came up once. You thought it was rhetoric, analogous to "singing happy negroes".
Franc28 wrote:
Batman wrote:
Of course we know Star Wars droids (once they actually become fully sentient, your run of the mill droid seems to fit quite nicely into the above mold) can decide they don't like their current job and bolt, but even those ones seem to be mostly quite happy with doing what they were designed to do (R2 never complained that I know of, and 3PO actually seemed to be proud to be a protocol droid).


I'm not sure what is the difference between this kind of rhetoric and the whole "singing happy negroes" rhetoric they had in the South, you know what I mean? Slaves even fought each other over whose master was the "best." Either way, this sort of argument has been made before on this thread, with pretty much the same conversation as we're having, so let's skip over it. I think we should concentrate on whether there are differences, not similarities.

Seems like you did compare sentient robot labour to slavery right there. It's already been established that C-3PO was more than happy to do his job. And it wasn't even "forced" labour. My wording of "unpaid" was fine.

So, if it isn't even slavery, what the fuck do the ethics of slavery have to do with the conversation, hmm? Oh, wait...
Franc28 wrote:
Uh, no. No one said anything about "robot labor" being analogous to slavery.
Really?
Franc28 wrote:
But certainly it is possible for robots to be slaves. In case you missed it, this has been a major theme in science-fiction, including Star Trek.
No one said anything about robot slavery? :finger:
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Edi
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-14 02:27pm 

Dragonlord


Joined: 2002-07-11 12:27am
Posts: 11652
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Franc28, time to stop with the evasive bullshit. You came into the thread with an axiomatic statement of fact which you have refused to back up with any sort of coherent reasoning, even though constructing a basis for it is an utterly simple exercise.

When confronted about your inadequate argumentation, you first give factually wrong definitions of things and make elementary mistakes. When called on those, you accuse the people doing so merely of being trolls. You are being attacked on the very premises of your argument and you refuse to even name them, let alone defend them.

It's time to either put up or shut the fuck up.
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Franc28
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-15 01:49am 

Mindless worshipper of Ayn Rand


Joined: 2002-07-04 04:53pm
Posts: 88
Location: Montreal, Canada
I think I have adequately addressed the questions that have been brought up on this thread. Stop beating around the bush and asking me to account for a whole debate, which is a ridiculous request. If you think I have failed to answer a specific question or issue, then ask the question or pose the issue. Otherwise you're just wasting time in posturing.
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Darth Tedious
 Post subject: Re: Data versus C-3PO
PostPosted: 2011-02-15 02:40am 

Jedi Master


Joined: 2011-01-16 09:48pm
Posts: 1070
Your entire stance in this debate has been built upon the premise that unpaid robot labour in analogous to human slavery.

You have yet to justify how this is so.
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