The philosophy of artificial intelligence.

Can it have hope?

Hope and faith are intertwined. One cannot have hope and not have faith, for hope is faith projected into the future. Even if an AI agent can have faith, having hope is another thing entirely. If a machine believes in God, it'd still have no way of knowing that God will deliver on any of His promises. Hope is believing that you will receive something that you donít yet have. In order for an AI agent to have hope, it must have the ability to envision not only the present but the future. Thatís a level of consciousness thatís difficult for many humans to sustain. Itís easy to get mired into todayís activities and forget about the future entirely. A silly example: If you eat too many giant hamburgers you will develop coronary artery disease. Youíve had a giant hamburger 4 out of 5 days for the last year. Why are you having a giant hamburger tonight? Because youíre not thinking about the future.

I believe any AI agent that can have faith and is self-aware can have hope. But like the giant hamburger example, one has to at least pause and consider the future from time to time. Thatís the only way the person in the example will stop their destructive behavior. Thatís the only way a machine (or a human for that matter) with faith can have hope.

Next: Can it love?

Jump To:
Is it alive?
Does it have emotions?
Is it conscious?
Can it have faith?
Can it have hope?
Can it love?
Does it have a soul?

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