If you are experiencing problems downloading PDF or HTML fulltext, our helpdesk recommend clearing your browser cache and trying again. If you need help in clearing your cache, please click here . Still need help? Email help@ingentaconnect.com

How Hard is Artificial Intelligence? Evolutionary Arguments and Selection Effects

$29.54 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Buy Article:


Several authors have made the argument that because blind evolutionary processes produced human intelligence on Earth, it should be feasible for clever human engineers to create human-level artificial intelligence in the not-too-distant future. This evolutionary argument, however, has ignored the observation selection effect that guarantees that observers will see intelligent life having arisen on their planet no matter how hard it is for intelligent life to evolve on any given Earth-like planet. We explore how the evolutionary argument might be salvaged from this objection, using a variety of considerations from observation selection theory and analysis of specific timing features and instances of convergent evolution in the terrestrial evolutionary record. We find that, depending on the resolution of disputed questions in observation selection theory, the objection can either be wholly or moderately defused, although other challenges for the evolutionary argument remain.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Email: nick.bostrom@philosophy.ox.ac.uk

Publication date: January 1, 2012

Related content



Share Content

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
ingentaconnect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more