Re: AI and Consciousness
It really is a tricky one. I am not sure what I think about it, although my suspicions are that it is not a case of us designing AI to be conscious, but more of a case of designing something (based on say some algorithm) that operates in such a way that it "learns" to be self aware or something along those lines. Whether we will ever truly understand how it works is another matter.
Xzallion is right in that we don't really know what we are looking for. How would we know that a computer is conscious? Passing something like the Turing test just doesn't seem to be enough.
But then again, isn't that what we do with other people? We assume that others are conscious because they pass our own folk psychology version of the Turing test and they are relevantly similar to ourselves. We would probably conclude that Aliens were conscious if they behaved in certain ways, why not computers? Or is it something we can never really know?
I doubt that there will ever be a Eureka moment. Computers will probably just become so integrated into our lives that we treat them as if they are, and they behave as if they are, conscious. Perhaps after time, they will become conscious but on their own accord.
Desktop: Intel Pentium IV 2.40GHz, Memory 1GB, Ubuntu 8.40
Laptop: Mobile AMD Sempron 1.8 GHz, Memory 1.2GB, Kubuntu 8.10