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  • Writer's pictureJVC

From Parchment to Pixels: The Eternal Cycle of Power in the Digital Age

In my recent paper, "From Parchment to Pixels: The Eternal Cycle of Power in the Digital Age," I explore the fascinating interplay between artificial intelligence, human rights, and the enduring challenges that societies face as technology evolves. Now it is still a work in progress, this was a final project I did for an intendent study but my professor loved it so I figured it would be nice to share with you all.

What I found most intriguing while writing this was how the contemporary issues surrounding AI mirror historical debates on civil rights, slavery, and the rights of animals almost exactly. It became clear to me that the problems arising from digital technologies are not inherently new but rather the latest manifestations of long-standing societal concerns.

If you're interested in reading the full paper, you can download it below(or just read the rest of this post to get an overview):

From Parchment to Pixels (1)
Download PDF • 169KB

As I delved deeper into the topic, I couldn't help but question how AI challenges our understanding of intelligence, consciousness, and personhood. It's like we're being forced to reconsider our definitions of life and moral worth. The more I study AI the more I must learn about what it means to be human.

The works of philosophers like Descartes, Turing, and Botting really drove this point home for me, highlighting the evolving discourse on machine cognition and its implications for the distinction between human and artificial intelligence.

With AI becoming more and more integrated into our daily lives, questions about robot rights and the legal and ethical standing of non-human entities are starting to pop up everywhere. I looked at these issues through the lens of Gunkel's work on robot rights and the history of exclusion in human rights discourse.

It's crucial that we consider the broader implications of our ethical and societal decisions regarding AI, as the capabilities of these technologies may require us to reevaluate the rights we extend to them.

Of course, I couldn't ignore the potential risks and power dynamics associated with the development of superintelligent AI. Bostrom's "Superintelligence" provided some really thought-provoking insights (even though I may find fault in some of his line of thought) on this front specifically. It's clear that we need robust technical safeguards and a philosophical rethinking of our relationship with technology to ensure that AI aligns with human values and societal needs and vice versa.

At the end of the day, "From Parchment to Pixels" is my attempt to contribute to the broader discourse on the responsible development and regulation of AI and digital technologies. I want to emphasize the importance of recognizing technology as a medium through which human issues are expressed and transformed.

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