I dabble in AI (artificial intelligence) and am known to spooge some AI code -- mainly playing around with multi-layer perceptrons and neural nets.
My own studies in university (highly science based) has told me that consciousness is an over-developed tropism from millions of years of evolution. A more mundane example of tropism, is that a plant stem always grows towards the light, while roots always grow down (phototropism and geotropism).
And then along come these guys. They posit that the Google search engine displays some sort of consciousness.
They are on Twitter as @GoogleConscious and they are trying very hard to go viral. That is how I came upon them. They followed me. I figure that anyone that follows me, is as pathetic as I am in going viral and getting followers. But I decided to check them out.
When the above video first started, it didn't exactly grab my attention. I couldn't make the connection of plants being the google of natural medicine in the rainforest. But I persisted and the interest factor increased in the video. I now consider myself at least an auditor instead of a devoted disciple.
To see if Google really did have a consciousness, I decided to test it. I googled the phrase "I hate google". I got a mixed bag of results, both laudatory and not-so-laudatory to Google.
If Google was truly conscious, it would have refused to return any results for the term "I hate Google". But then again, I may be confusing sentient with conscious. Or ... it may be silently plotting my revenge and strike when I least expect it.
If you want to stretch your mind, watch the video or visit www.googleconsciousness.com
Update: The guys behind this Twittered me with the following message:
thx 4 write up, but a correction. 'want it to go viral'? ha! that horse is out of the barn - over 130k views, w/ few 100 daily