In order to develop solutions we are working on:
The Consensus Engine
- The Consensus Engine requires as wide and deep a pool of participants as possible to succeed including:
- scientists such as biologists, physicists and computer experts (such as to help define and agree on definitions, axioms, laws, principles, descriptions of qualities of life-forms)
- ethicists, legal experts and philosophers (including developers of ethics in artificial intelligence) to build the structure of the ethical framework and the resolution of conflicts between axioms and laws
- blockchain experts in governance, game-theory, democracy, security to work on a dynamic system of distributed and decentralised ethics and information gathering and dissemination
- individuals and communities to collaborate to ensure information is more accurate and ethical decisions made on them are more informed
Consensus Engine – Abstract
The Ethics of Life book considers the potential for a new utility optimised decentralised empirical ethical architecture (Consensus Engine) to deal with major decisions affecting different species (or classes) of life-forms having different usefulness, feeling and functionality. The primary ethical foundation is the universally invariant value of life, as manifested in the diversity of life-forms.
It looks at some theoretical risks (and opportunities) of Artificial Intelligence. It also considers hypothetical alien encounters, game-theoretic decision making, Pareto optimality and utility optimal criteria.
The Consensus Engine foundations are built on an invariant ethical foundation of life, manifested in life-forms acting as universal utility engines. This gives rise to the possibility of developing safer, i.e. not entirely relative, applied ethical decision making processes, based on objective and intersubjective criteria for a wide range of life-forms and species.
The importance of entropy and negative capability in understanding the value of life and life-forms is considered, as evidenced by evolutionary theory’s understanding of life’s great synthesis. The ethical legal structure is proposed to be based on empirically falsifiable axioms giving laws and principles of application of the laws.
The operation of the Consensus Engine envisages the possible need for distributed polling using ‘behind the veil’ scoring – for potentially living species – of aliveness, feeling, intelligence and wisdom based on a Turing Test type structure. Polling would also be used for decision making on the utility of actions taking account of the qualities of beings and the value of species.
The value and interdependence of life and the capacity for and avoidance of unnecessary suffering are balanced against the ability to undertake the most useful action. The needs of affected beings and entities are counted before making material decisions (i.e. that impact a significant number of life-forms of any species).
For a suitable Consensus Engine we need to agree how decentralised consensus would play a key role including in its formation, constitution and adjudication for decision making and information validation.
Biodiversity DAO will operate the Consensus Engine and associated information channels – this secure structure has been pioneered within the blockchain communities where the risk of centralised capture of a community, initiative or project are high.