Why study resource allocation in computers for intelligence augmentation?

Managing a factory is a complicated business. You need to manage the flow of materials around it, monitor it for problems and stop and start it as required.

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Managing a factory is a complicated business. You need to manage the flow of materials around it, monitor it for problems and stop and start it as required.

This is error prone and labor intensive. The normal solution has been to creating a computer system for you that manages the factory. Now you haven’t really solved the problem but shifted the problem to a different one, you need to manage the computer system. You need to update it for new machinery, fix bugs and remove malware that gets into the system.

It is worth noting that the brains of all the other creatures on this earth do not have this problem. They manage to move the complicated bit of machinery, known as their body, around the place even when it changes drastically as it grows and ages.  They do not have a manager. We want to figure out how they manage with this lack of explicit management. If we want to expand our brains we want to do it with the same kind of machinery they are made of currently.

So what are we doing when we manage a computer. When we create a new program we allocate the resources that the old program had to the new one and the old program goes away. When we remove malware we are removing any resources it had from it so it no longer exists. Management is a about moving resources around in the broadest sense of the term.

Current computer management can be seen like the command economy with a central planner allocating resources. We need to explore other resource allocation methodologies. There was one suggested in the 80s called agorics which never got fully developed and didn’t link in with one specific user but the wider economy. I’ve been working on a virtual machine, agorint, that uses feedback from a user to control the currency and thus the allocation of resources inside the system. But there needs to be more discussion and exploration to determine whether this is the right route for intelligence augmentation.

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