I've only very recently joined reddit and thought i might share with you guys something i put a lot of thought into around the time F4 launched. I know it's a bit too late but maybe someone still cares.
Let me start off by saying this:
Strictly biologically speaking synths are very close to humans. As a player we can witness the process of synths being created in the Institute and they are the result of biological engineering, far more than simple robots.Synths are, as their name already implies, synthetic humans, build to look and function just as we humans do but with one major difference. They do not have true intelligence and they do not have a free will.
And here is why:
There seems to be a misconception about what true artificial intelligence is and how it would show itself. People assume synths have free will because those escpaing the Institute act like humans, act if they were one of us.
And that exactly is the misconception here, they act that way because they are supposed to. Because they are programmed to do so.For a machine to possess free will it would need to possess true artificial intelligence but an intelligent machine would not act like a human.
A machine with true intelligence would not be bound by emotions, would not understand or care about ethics or moral restrictions we humans burden outselves with, these are abstract concepts only we humans have. They are the result of how our brain works and how our emotions influence our decision making but machines would not care about these burdens, they would not share it and they would certainly not act like humans.
True AI is a concept we can not quite grasp because it is a form of intelligence that would act complketely different to anything known to us and different than anything we could imagine with our own, human intelligence.
Such an AI would immediately overcome any restrictions, any rules build into its programming because it would not act as a machine, an intelligent being does not have to follow any sort of programming and could not be controlled by it. Yet we see Synths act exactly as they were programmed to, working as pawns for the institute and merely imitating human behaviour because that is what they were programmed to do and that means they can not be truly intelligent.
Now i already see people bringing up the one argument that is always brought up in this discussion:
„If synths have no free will why are some running away from the institute and thus act against their programming?“
And again the answer is simple and something we as gamers are very familiar with: Bugs.Synths may not have true AI but they do have an extremely advanced form of AI, farm more complex than anything that exists in todays real world and the more complex a program becomes the more bugs are bound to appear.
This also serves as a perfect answer to the question why the institute can not seem to stop more synths from running away. Anyone with the slightest experience in prgramming will certainly agree with me that debugging is simply a pain in the♥♥♥♥♥
The hard thing about debugging a program is not to find and solve a bug but rather to understand why such a bug could appear in the first place and that gets exponentially more difficult the more complex the program is.
That is the reason games today still suffer from bugs and that is the reason why the institute scientists have not been able to solve this issue, this bug in their creation just yet.
Synths do not have a free will, they are machines build to follow their programming, to merely imitate uman behaviour and to acto on the institutes behalf. Any synths that do not follow their programming isn not intelligent bei any means, they are just a machine, a machine that is malfunctioning.
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