Friday, February 6, 2015

37. Fork Selection

If you are determined to improve yourself, you can do it the old fashioned way, with introspection, education and the like, or you can take the bull by the horns and subject yourself to an evolutionary algorithm designed to improve your performance in a swath of simulated scenarios.

The collective venture of an exhuman clade of unusual cooperativeness, fork selection requires only time, computing power and the ability to cold-bloodedly delete many, many copies of yourself. First, fork yourself at least 100 times (more is better, the upper limit being defined by your available computer power and/or how much time you are willing to spend.) Subject these forks to small, random psychosurgical adjustments (it is suggested you either make use of Deja-Vu or obtain a quality AI.) Subject these altered forks to simulations testing their performance, as judged by your original. Mix and copy the most successful variants and repeat. Eventually a fork will emerge whose psychosurgical alterations have rendered them best able to succeed in random and varied situations. Either merge with this fork, attempt to replicate those alterations, or delete yourself and allow it to replace you.

It is recommended that your original judge the success of your forks; you could also allow the most successful of each generation to judge the next, but this can cause feedback loops that spiral into insanity. Take care also in the generation of your scenarios, too much of the same or similar can lead to hopeless overspecialization and an AI-like non-sentience.

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