AGI, All Too Human; Nietzsche and Artificial General Intelligence.




Branston, Tyler

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Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are seen as the pinnacle of human technology, capable of intelligence beyond humans and a beyond-human capacity to know, create, and process the entirety of human knowledge. Contrary to popular assumptions supported by faith in science, technology is not neutral and contains within it the residual ideological assumptions of those who created it. The need, or will, to create particular technologies is indicated by cultural drives, which Nietzsche designates as the Will to Power. Nietzsche’s übermensch is an affirmation of life and becomes his solution to the problem of nihilism that results from the cultural unity of Platonism and Christianity. The übermensch affirms life and the body through the myth of eternal return and focuses on the importance and relevance of the world-in-itself, or physis, as a literal grounding principle for meaning and values in after the ‘death of God.’ Contrary to some popular claims about Nietzsche’s perceived support for trans/post-humanism, Nietzsche’s analysis points to the drives that take AGI as the manifestation of Platonic-Christian drives but presents the übermensch as a solution, where AGI would be the symptom. Offering an extensive interpretation of Nietzsche’ philosophy, this thesis presents a lineage of Nietzsche’s thought that demonstrates his creation of the übermensch and why AGI should be seen as its opposite. AGI becomes a necessity only for a secular Platonic-Christian culture that needs to resolve the problem of nihilism with a replacement of God in a material form resistant to the scrutiny of science. AGI should then be understood as a theological necessity to support and justify science and, therefore, will necessarily contain theological biases that would reify those created by Platonism and Christianity. The thesis concludes by discussing the implications of the contradiction of a technology that has become a secular-theological necessity and a material impossibility.



Nietzsche, Will to Power, Physis, posthumanism, transhumanism, Übermensch, Overman, Overhuman, human, posthuman, transhuman, culture, society, death of god, science, asceticism, technology, AI, AGI, Artificial Intelligence, Artificial General Intelligence, Superintelligence, Ultraintelligence, bias, technological bias, epistemology, myth, nature, christianity, platonism, deification