Can the Internet gain consciousness?

(ORDO NEWS) — A rather outdated belief system called “panpsychist” suggests that something resembling mind or consciousness is inherent in everything material that surrounds us. In other words, panpsychist is the concept of the general animate nature of nature.

Some scientists, such as neuroscientist Christoph Koch , have tried to modernize this belief system by stating that if there are enough connections between elements – for example, synapses in the brain – consciousness can begin to form naturally.

On average, the human brain has 86 billion neurons and roughly 100 trillion connections between them. But does this mean that if something else has the same number of connections, then it also gains consciousness? Some researchers are convinced of this.

Like our brain, the Internet is an object with many connections, which are provided by connected computers, mobile devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) – wearable gadgets, household appliances, cars, smart homes, etc. networks and interacting with it.

According to one estimate, by 2030, the number of Internet-connected devices worldwide will reach 125 billion. Thus, the number of connections on the Internet seems to be rapidly approaching the capabilities of our brains.

But how do we know if the Internet has regained consciousness?

The Internet can process information as quickly as our brain, but this does not mean that it will one day gain self-awareness.

There are gigantic differences between the two systems: our consciousness is created by the brain, which has evolved over millions of years, while the Internet is a human-made network that has existed for only a few decades.

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On the other hand, the artificial intelligence we are striving to create will also be a human-made network…


Consciousness is still such a poorly studied subject that we do not yet have a definitive answer to the question voiced in the title of the article. In order to get closer to solving this riddle, we need to figure out how to measure consciousness and, of course, try to create an “artificial mind”.


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