Computers, Information Technology, the Internet, Ethics, Society and Human Values

Philip Pecorino, Ph.D.

Queensborough Community College,  CUNY

Chapter 13 Artificial Intelligence and Being Human



General AI

Artificial Intelligence: A Light Approach  references by Luciano Floridi  sections on

General Resources
The Philosophy of AI
Turing and His Test
Testing and Debugging
Genetic Algorithms
Computer Chess and Draughts/Checkers
Fuzzy Logic
Neural Networks
Parallel Computing
(Computational) Complexity
Quantum Computing
Expert Systems, Knowledge Engineering and Formal Ontologies
Robotics, Cybernetics and Artificial Agents
Artificial Life

Minds and Machines  Major Resource site by Peter Suber

What is Artificial Intelligence? An essay by John McCarthy, a founder of the field.

Cognitive Science, from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Artificial Intelligence, from Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, 1993.

Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence   Resources  by  Selmer Bringsjord

Chess Is Too Easy. An essay by Selmer Bringsjord.

Computing, Machinery, and Intelligence. Alan Turing's classic essay.

Turing Test Resources

Turing Test: 50 Years Later  by  Ayse Pinar Saygin, Ilyas Cicekli, Varol Akman in
Minds and Machines, 10 (4), November 2000 

Conscious Machines. An essay by Marvin Minsky.

Daniel Dennett's Online Papers

Minds, Machines, and Gödel. An essay by J.R. Lucas.

Philosophy and Cognitive Science. An essay by Serge Sharoff.

Technological Singularity. An essay by Vernor Vinge. Ignore the preface by John Klett.

Thinking Computers and Virtual Persons. A new anthology of essays on AI (and against Searle's Chinese Room argument), edited by Eric Dietrich. The site contains a table of contents and abstracts of the essays.

Net Future Articles on AI


Watch video (recommended) or read transcript of the listed presentations from 2000 conference, Will Spiritual Robots Replace Humanity by 2100?

01. Douglas Hofstadter   Professor of Cognitive Science at Indiana, Author, Gödel, Escher, Bach

02. Ray Kurzweil    Author, The Age of Spiritual Machines.

03. Bill Joy   Co-Founder, Chief Scientist, Sun Microsystems

04. Hans Moravec  (from 7:01 to end)   Pioneer of mobile robot research, Author, Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind.

05. John Holland   Inventor of genetic algorithms, artificial-life pioneer; Professor of CS and Psychology at the U. of Michigan.  

06. Kevin Kelly   Editor-At-Large, Wired, Author, Out of Control, a study of bio-technological hybrids. 

07. Frank Drake  Chairman of the Board of Trustees, SETI Institute 

08. Ralph Merkle   Principal Fellow, Zyvex, LLC, Recipient, 1998 Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology for Theoretical Work

09. John Koza  Consulting Professor (Medical Informatics), Stanford University. Inventor of genetic programming.

10. Panel Discussion 

11.  Audience Q&A   

Online papers on consciousness
The Structure of Cognition
Consciousness and Common Sense
SCIENCE'S LAST FRONTIERS: Consciousness, Life and Meaning
Godel's Theorems
Peter Suber, "Gödel's Proof"
Searle's Chinese Box
Peek at new book: ROBOT by Hans Moravec
Kismet:  A Sociable Robot
Starlogo: Programmable modelling environment
Kismet:  A Sociable Robot

 The Singularity Vernor Vinge, "Within thirty years, we will have the technological means to create superhuman intelligence. Shortly after, the human era will be ended."

The Law of Accelerating Returns Raymond Kurzweil,

"What Are We Thinking About?" Shirley Turkle:  (2000)

Why the future doesn't need us. Bill Joy,  Wired 8.04, April 2000


Assimilation of the Machine  Mumford(1934)

Posthumanization and Cyberspace

There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom (1959)  Richard Feynman,


Nanotech's Dark Side Debated in the Aftershock of Sept. 11
National Nanotechnology Initiative

Sense of Self and Cyber space and AI

Cyberspace and the world we live Body and Society -

Cybersociety: computer-mediated communication and community.

Psychology of Cyberspace - Gender Swapping and Psychology of Cyberspace - Psychology of Avatars from John Suler

Computers and the Communication of Gender by Elizabeth Lane Lawley

Technologies of the Self  by Alan Aycock

Identity and Deception in the Virtual Community by Judith Donath

 Identity and the Cyborg Body Chapter Three of Elizabeth Reid's thesis Cultural Formations in Text-Based Virtual Realities

Construction of the Discourse of Virtual Reality, 1984-1992   Colonizing Virtual Reality -

Will the Real Body Please Stand Up? by Rosanne Stone

If you are interested in Science and Computers and Artificial Intelligence you might want to "get into" this subject by examining the material at this site listed below:

Science Fiction Setting the Scene:

Cyberspace and Neuroscience

Cyberspace and Philosophy

Bridging the Gap between Philosophy and Neuroscience

Searle's Chinese Room Argument against Strong-AI


Artificial Intelligence and Ethical & Social Implications from the AAAI

Reasoning About Computers as Moral Agents 

Ethical Issues in Advanced Artificial Intelligence by  Nick Bostrom

ABSTRACT     The ethical issues related to the possible future creation of machines with general intellectual capabilities far outstripping those of humans are quite distinct from any ethical problems arising in current automation and information systems. Such superintelligence would not be just another technological development; it would be the most important invention ever made, and would lead to explosive progress in all scientific and technological fields, as the superintelligence would conduct research with superhuman efficiency. To the extent that ethics is a cognitive pursuit, a superintelligence could also easily surpass humans in the quality of its moral thinking. However, it would be up to the designers of the superintelligence to specify its original motivations. Since the superintelligence may become unstoppably powerful because of its intellectual superiority and the technologies it could develop, it is crucial that it be provided with human-friendly motivations. This paper surveys some of the unique ethical issues in creating superintelligence, and discusses what motivations we ought to give a superintelligence, and introduces some cost-benefit considerations relating to whether the development of superintelligent machines ought to be accelerated or retarded.

Ethical & Social Implications    As computers are programmed to act more like people, several social and ethical concerns come into focus. For example: Are there ethical bounds on what computers should be programmed to do? Sources listed here focus on AI, but also included are works that range more broadly into the general impact of computerization.

Artificial Intelligence and Philosophy from the AAAI

Artificial Intelligence and Science Fiction from the AAAI

Artificial Intelligence and Reasoning from the AAAI

The 9th Workshop on Automated Reasoning

Artificial Intelligence and History from the AAAI

Artificial Intelligence and Brief History of AI from the AAAI

Artificial Intelligence and Brief History of AI from the AAAI

Artificial Intelligence and Brief History of AI from the AAAI

MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.

Artificial Intelligence Research Laboratory at Iowa State University.

Medical use of AI systems

AI and Legal systems

AI and Theology

Interesting Links

Artificial Intelligence articles  from   Fuchsia Shockz!


Bibliographies on Artificial Intelligence

Societies and Organizations

OFAI Library Information System Biblio, searchable database containing data on books, research papers, conference papers, journal articles from many sub areas of Artificial Intelligence. 

American Association for Artificial Intelligence  AAAI

Founded in 1979, the American Association for Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) is a nonprofit scientific society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines. AAAI also aims to increase public understanding of artificial intelligence, improve the teaching and training of AI practitioners, and provide guidance for research planners and funders concerning the importance and potential of current AI developments and future directions.

Major AAAI activities include organizing and sponsoring conferences, symposia, and workshops, publishing a quarterly magazine for all members, publishing books, proceedings, and reports, and awarding grants, scholarships, and other honors.

Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and the Simulation of Behaviour

Artificial Intelligence, Ethics and (Quasi-)Human Rights


The following authors on Mind Brain and Consciousness  have homepages:


Ned Block

David Chalmers

Patricia Churchland

Paul Churchland

Daniel Dennett

Frank Jackson

Jaegwon Kim

Hugh Loebner

Drew McDermott (papers)

John Searle

A.M. Turing



Web Surfer's Caveat: These are class notes, intended to comment on readings and amplify class discussion. They should be read as such. They are not intended for publication or general distribution.                @copyright 2006 Philip A. Pecorino                       

Last updated 8-2006                                                              Return to Table of Contents