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From Whom do We Learn?

From Whom do We Learn?

Post from: MAPpingCompanySuccess

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jepoirrier/6531621843/

In a Halloween discussion With KG Charles-Harris (you should read it if you haven’t already) we talked about the possibilities of robots becoming self-willed. I said that might be an improvement over humans, but KG had a different take and it’s been stuck in my mind.

“True, but unfortunately children often absorb some of the worst traits of their parents…”

What bothers me is I don’t think that it’s true anymore for several reasons.

  • Children absorb traits and values from their parents/family, but they are just as likely to absorb them from the media and even more likely these days to draw them from their peers.
  • Kids may parrot their parents when young, but tend to move in their own direction more and more as they age and grow.

Although I know what KG means when he says “worst,” it is still a word with fluid meaning that is often dependent on one’s own values and beliefs.

This fluidity is particularly noticeable when looking at highly charged subjects, such as politics or religion, where one person’s theme is another’s anathema.

I’m also don’t really agree with Chris’ comment that the worst human trait is greed; another word whose meaning is not always what as expected.

Perhaps I’m too much of an optimist, but if (when?) robots do gain sentience I don’t see them moving in lockstep or necessarily following in our footsteps.

That hasn’t happened even with human generations, e.g., I doubt the Silent Generation saw their values reflected in the Boomers.

Actually, I think sentience, i.e, self-awareness, is a guarantee that there will be no more uniformity in a race of robots than there is in the human race.

Flickr image credit: jepoirrier

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