Transhumanities as the Pinnacle and a Bridge
1. Transhumanities, the Need and the Idea
- Where disciplines mesh to the point of total blending;
- Where there is a smoother transition between, or among, the disciplines, with the center dominated by the mesh but a very visible disciplinary core remaining at the edges (Figure 1).
1.1. Transdisciplinarity and Its Alternatives
1.1.1. The Graph of Various Levels of Multi-Disciplinary Integration
1.1.2. Non-Thinking Animals? An Example of Transdisciplinarity for Philosophy
1.1.3. An Example in Philosophy of AI
1.2. An Instance of Transdisciplinary Research in Socio-Economic Sciences
2.1. Transdisciplinary Humanities—The Very Idea
2.2. Preliminary Regulative Definition
Transdisciplinarity uses analysis, synthesis, or other methods that go above and beyond disciplinary perspectives (as they were when we found or inherited them at the beginning of a given research project or theoretical work). The transdisciplinary approach is not constrained by methodologies, authorities, or most constraints of the disciplines at hand, though its practitioner needs to understand, and muster, the relevant disciplinary knowledge. It develops its own general methods and even paradigms above and beyond disciplinary limitations.
2.3. Beyond Transdisciplinarity—Humnities for AI
2.4. Transhumanities—The Space for Connection among the Inteligencies of Various Kinds
3. Transhumanities and the Church–Turing Entities
3.1. Church–Turing Lovers and Beyond
- They can perform relevant complex activities at a human level;
- Their cognitive functions are advanced and autonomous enough to be viewed as a separate intelligence (sapient) and maybe even a sentient entity, to follow D. Kelley (Kelley 2020). Varela called the latter process autopoiesis (Maturana and Varela 1980) and the term is now used in AI theory in a similar context (Goertzel 2006).
3.2. Transhumanities and the Posthuman Condition
3.3. Transhumanism at the Edge of Chaos
3.3.1. Ethical Computers and ‘Cultured AI’
3.3.2. Humanities beyond Anthropocene
4. Transhumanities, towards a Definition
4.1. Interdisciplinary Humanities, a Regulative Definition
4.2. Trnsdisciplinary Humanities, a Stipulative Definition
- Disruptive technology that allows satisfying consumer needs in radically different ways (unique value proposition)
- Unique value network, a set of talent, suppliers, enablers and other capacities that is not easy to replicate (Rogers 2016).
4.3. Transhumanities, a Projective Definition
4.4. Building towards Formulation of Transhumanites
4.5. Transhumanities further Stipulated
5. Conclusions and Review: Transhumanities for AGI
Transhumanities for the Future
Conflicts of Interest
According to Darian-Smith and McCarthy (below).
This is nicely envisaged in Figure 1. Other similar graphs present transdisciplinarity as just one horizontal blub. This would indicate the end of disciplinary knowledge or competencies, which the author views as misguided.
‘A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.’ This principle was famously laid out by German theoretical physicist Max Planck in 1950 and it turns out that he was right, according to a new study.
Luciano Floridi and many others use this term for those people born and raised in the environment of persistent interactions with IT technologies.
Quite often, interdisciplinarity is exactly what we need. For instance, if I need to know about Abraham Lincoln’s views and attitudes toward Native Americans, we should consult a historian specializing in Lincoln studies and learn the facts. Yet, this idealization is often quite naïve since it is neglecting disciplinary and attitudinal context-dependencies. Lincoln scholars are often understated about the issue, since the 16th president of the US was by far more compassionate concerning the group we now call African Americans then another group called now Native Americans. A scholar specializing in Native American studies, preferably from a place that identifies with their tradition, would be most likely to tell us that Lincoln’s grandfather was killed by the Native Americans, which partly shaped Abe Lincoln’s attitudes in the matter. This is to show that interdisciplinarity, in the humanities and beyond, never presumes full objectivity of the experts, or lack of room for their fruitful discussion and interdisciplinary disagreement, as well as consensus. Those, however, do not necessarily turn a Lincoln-scholar into a scholar in Native American studies and vice versa—even though they may gain some shared competencies.
In Polish there is a term projecting definition (definiticja projektująca), which most people translate as stipulative definition; however, stipulating is different than designing or projecting. Thus, the Polish version that comes from the Lwov-Warsaw school of philosophy (probably Twardowski and Ajdukiewicz) as well as the German philosophical tradition, is more radical than the regular stipulative definitions, Thus, I treat it here as a sub-class of stipulative definitions characterized by more radical level of projecting (not merely gauging) but not quite re-designing all the way.
As a side note that develops what was mentioned in the main text: There were a number of patent applications for DABUS filed lately; some were already rejected, but only for philosophical or legalistic reasons (either there is no legal procedure to award patents to robots and AI, or it is viewed as ethically or anthropologically inappropriate). In any instance, it is not controversial that most advanced Artificial Intelligence, for the last decade or so, has been able to make (in principle patentable) independent discoveries.
This is visible in the musical glasses, a device for people with non-working eyes but working visual cortex, where sounds are perceived as colors and shapes. In a matter of months many people regain the main aspects of space understanding based on different qualia replacing vision.
I want to thank Albrecht Classen, Editor of this journal, for encouragement and helpful comments on several versions; Meredith Cargill and other members of the Central Illinois Philosophy group for essential comments on an earlier version; my Senior Seminar students at UIS for their input, as well as anonymous reviewers for this journal for their important recommendations. Special thanks go to Christina Takahashi from MDPI Japan for exemplary editorial help.
- Bisk, Tsvi, and Peter Boltuc. 2017. Sustainability as Growth. In Technology, Society, Sustainability. Edited by Lech Zacher. Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 175–83. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Peter. 2007. (co-author) Replication of the Hard Problem of Consciousness in AI and Bio-AI: An Early Conceptual Framework. In AI and Consciousness: Theoretical Foundations and Current Approaches. Edited by Antonio Chella and Riccardo Manzotti. Merlo Park: AAAI Press, pp. 24–29. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Peter. 2009. The Philosophical Problem in Machine Consciousness. International Journal of Machine Consciousness 1: 155–76. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Boltuc, Peter. 2011. What is the Difference between Your Friend and a Church Turing Lover. In The Computational Turn: Past, Presents and Futures? Proceedings IACAP 2011. Edited by Charles Ess and Ruth Hagengruber. Aarhus: Aarchus University, pp. 37–40. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Peter. 2012. The Engineering Thesis in Machine Consciousness. Techne: Research in Philosophy and Technology 16: 187–207. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Boltuc, Piotr. 2015. Sustainability and Growth (A Controversy). Gliwice: Organization and Management, Śląsk Politechics, pp. 27–48. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Piotr. 2017. Church-Turing Lovers. In Robot Ethics 2.0: From Autonomous Cars to Artificial Intelligence. Edited by Patrick Lin, Keith Abney and Ryan Jenkins. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Peter. 2018a. BICA à Rebours. In Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing. Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures. Edited by Alexei V. Samsonovich. Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 27–43. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Piotr. 2018b. Strong Semantic Computing. Procedia Computer Science 123: 98–103. [Google Scholar]
- Boltuc, Piotr. 2020. Conscious AI at the Edge of Chaos. Journal of Artificial Intelligence and Consciousness 5: 25–38. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Braidotti, Rosi. 2018. The Posthuman Condition and the Critical Posthumanities, Lecture November 2. Available online: https://rosibraidotti.com/2019/01/28/the-posthuman-condition-and-the-critical-posthumanities/ (accessed on 15 December 2021).
- Brook, Angus. 2009. The Early Heidegger and Ethics: The Notion of Ethos in Martin Heidegger’s Early Career. Saarbrücken: VDM Verlag. [Google Scholar]
- Chalmers, David J. 1995. Facing up to the problem of consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies 2: 200–19. [Google Scholar]
- Chawla, Dalmeet Singh. 2019. Science Really Does Advance One Funeral at a Time, Study Suggests” Chemistry World 17 September 2019. Available online: https://www.chemistryworld.com/news/science-really-does-advance-one-funeral-at-a-time-study-suggests/3010961.article (accessed on 15 December 2021).
- Classen, Albrecht, ed. 2020. Paradigm Shifts During the Global Middle Ages and Renaissance. Arizona Studies in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (ASMAR 44). Turnhout: Brepols. [Google Scholar]
- Classen, Albrecht. 2021. Transdisciplinarity—A Bold Way into the Academic Future, from a European Medievalist Perspective and or the Rediscovery of Philology? Humanities 10: 96. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- D’Alembert, Jean Le Rond. 1761. Preliminary Discourse to the Encyclopedia of Diderot, English editions 1995. Translated by Richard N. Schwab, and Walter E. Rex. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [Google Scholar]
- Damasio, Antonio. 2011. Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain. New York: Random House. [Google Scholar]
- Darian-Smith, Eve, and Philip McCarty. 2016. Beyond Interdisciplinarity: Developing a Global Transdisciplinary Framework. Transcience 7: 1–26. [Google Scholar]
- Davidson, Donald. 1985. Rational Animals. In Actions and Events: Perspectives on the Philosophy of Donald Davidson. Edited by Ernest Lepore and Brian P. McLaughlin. New York: Basil Blackwell. [Google Scholar]
- Deutsch, David. 1985. Quantum theory, the Church–Turing principle and the universal quantum computer. Proceedings of the Royal Society 400: 97–117. [Google Scholar]
- Floridi, Luciano. 2014. The 4th Revolution. How the Infosphere is Reshaping Human Reality. Oxford: OUP. [Google Scholar]
- Floridi, Luciano. 2016. On Human Dignity as a Foundation for the Right to Privacy. Philosophyu of Technology 29: 307–12. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version]
- Goertzel, Ben. 2006. The Hidden Pattern. A Patternist Philosophy of Mind. Boca Raton: BrownWalker Press. [Google Scholar]
- Ingarden, Roman. 1931. Das Literarische Kunstwerk. Tübingen: Max Niemeyer Verlag. [Google Scholar]
- Kant, Immanuel. 1781. Critique of Pure Reason. English Edition 1999. Translated and edited by Paul Guyer and Allen W. Wood. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Kant, Immanuel. 1797. Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals, and What Is Enlightenment? English Edition 1959. Translated with an introduction by Lewis White Beck. New York: Liberal Arts Press. [Google Scholar]
- Kelley, David. 2020. Preliminary Results and Analysis of an Independent Core Observer Model (ICOM) Cognitive Architecture in a Mediated Artificial Super Intelligence (mASI). In Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures 2019: Proceedings of the Tenth Annual Meeting of the BICA Society. Edited by Alexei V. Samsonovich. Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 179–86. Available online: https://www.springer.com/us/book/9783030257187 (accessed on 15 December 2021).
- Kuhn, Thomas. 1969. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, 2nd ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [Google Scholar]
- Libet, Benjamin. 2004. Mind Time: The Temporal Factor in Consciousness, Perspectives in Cognitive Neuroscience. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Marx, Karl. 1947. The German Ideology. London: International Publishers Co. [Google Scholar]
- Maturana, Humberto, and Francisco Varela. 1980. Autopoiesis And Cognition: The Realization of the Living Is a Cybernetic Work in Systems Theory and the Philosophy of Biology. Dordrecht: D. Reidel Publishing Company. [Google Scholar]
- Matzinger, Thomas. 1993. Subjekt und Selbstmodell. Die Perspektivität Phänomenalen Bewußtseins vor dem Hintergrund einer Naturalistischen Theorie Mentaler Repräsentation. Edited by Paderborn Mentis. Cincinnati: Mentis. [Google Scholar]
- Mccarty, Philip. 2016. Image. Available online: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Philip-Mccarty-2/publication/311486261/figure/fig1/AS:436722644328500@1481134200855/Transdisciplinarity_W640.jpg (accessed on 15 December 2021).
- Minsky, Marvin. 1985. The Society of Mind. New York: Simon and Schuster. [Google Scholar]
- Moor, James. 2007. Taking the Intentional Stance Toward Robot Ethics. APA Newsletter 6: 14–17. [Google Scholar]
- O’Regan, Kevin O. 2012. Why Red Doesn’t Sound Like a Bell: Understanding the Feel of Consciousness. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Piaget, Jean. 1972. The Epistemology of Interdisciplinary Relationships. In Interdisciplinarity: Problems of Teaching and Research in Universities. Edited by Leo Apostel, G. Berger, A. Briggs and G. Michaud. Paris: Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, pp. 127–39. [Google Scholar]
- Plato. 1968. The Republic. Translated by Allan Bloom. New York: Basic Books. [Google Scholar]
- Regersm, David. 2016. The Digital Transformation Playbook. New Yarok: Columbia University Press, Business School Publishing. [Google Scholar]
- Russell, Bertrand. 1912. US Publication 1998 “The Value of Philosophy”. In The Mayfield Anthology of Western Philosophy. Edited by Dsniel Kolak. Mountain View: Mayfield Publishing Company, pp. 1070–73. [Google Scholar]
- Rosemary, Johnston. 2008. On Connection and Community: Transdisciplinarity andthe Arts. In Transdisciplinarity—Theory and Practice. Edited by Basarab Nicolescu. Cresskill: Hampton Press Inc., pp. 223–36. [Google Scholar]
- Siegelmann, Hava. 2019. Lifelong Learning in Nature and Machines; US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) 4 November 2019, Presented to COMCAS 2019, Tel Aviv, Israel. Available online: http://2019.comcas.org/Portals/107/Hava%20T_%20Siegelmann.pdf (accessed on 15 December 2021).
- Sorger, Stefan Lorenz. 2019. Transhumanism: The Best Minds of Our Generation Are Needed for Shaping Our Future. Newsletter on Philosophy and Computers of the American Philosophical Association 18: 15–18. [Google Scholar]
- Spinoza, Benedict. 1677. Ethics. English Edition 2005. Translated by Edwin Curley. New York: Penguin. [Google Scholar]
- Thaler, Stephen. 2017. Encyclopedia of Creativity, Invention, Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Edited by Elias G. Carayannis. Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer Science+Business Media LLC. [Google Scholar]
- Thaler, Stephern. 2019. DABUS in a Nutshell. APA Newsletter on Philosophy and Computers 19: 40–42. [Google Scholar]
- Turing, Alan. 1950. Computing Machinery and Intelligence. In Mind. Cambridge: MIT Press, Volume LIX, pp. 433–60. [Google Scholar]
- Velmans, Max. 2009. Understanding Consciousness. London: Routledge. [Google Scholar]
- Waser, Mark. 2015. Designing, Implementing and Enforcing a Coherent System of Laws, Ethics and Morals for Intelligent Machines (including Humans). Procedia Computer Science 71: 106–11. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version]
- Welsh, Sean. 2018. Ethics and Security Automata. Abingdon and New York: Routledge. [Google Scholar]
Publisher’s Note: MDPI stays neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
© 2022 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Boltuc, P. Transhumanities as the Pinnacle and a Bridge. Humanities 2022, 11, 27. https://doi.org/10.3390/h11010027
Boltuc P. Transhumanities as the Pinnacle and a Bridge. Humanities. 2022; 11(1):27. https://doi.org/10.3390/h11010027Chicago/Turabian Style
Boltuc, Piotr (Peter). 2022. "Transhumanities as the Pinnacle and a Bridge" Humanities 11, no. 1: 27. https://doi.org/10.3390/h11010027