background preloader

10 of the Weirdest Futurist Scenarios for the Evolution of Humanity

10 of the Weirdest Futurist Scenarios for the Evolution of Humanity
Curious to know which of these visions you feel is the most and least plausible. I've got to hand it to you, Mr. Dvorsky. A lot of those ideas are pretty hair-brained, but you were able to weave an article from them anyhow. I would have given up at five, perhaps, although I'm glad you mentioned the likes of the VHEMT and others. It was a fun read. First off, I would say that the future will hold some combination of "all of the above", with no one particular hypothesis prevailing in the next few hundred years as each hypothesized outcome exploits a unique ecological niche. That said, brain size is DEFINITELY correlated with intelligence. The reason Americans' heads are getting bigger may be due to the high rate of C-sections in the US. I actually agree with you about speciation. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Wow, surprised to see so many people in support of the uploading scenario. Heh, that actually occurred to me, too. Related:  Futuro

The Compassion Revolution — How Society Is Designed To Crush Empathy Chloe Papas is a writer, journalist and prodigious eater based in Perth. chloepapas Approx 8 minute reading time In a time where self-care is considered paramount and we are taught to look after number one, Roman Krznaric sticks out like a sore thumb. Krznaric, who spent his formative years in Australia and now lives in the UK, defines empathy as the “imaginative ability to put yourself in someone else’s position and look at the world through their eyes.” We spoke to Krznaric about the empathy revolution. Why is empathy so important to you? I used to be a political scientist, and I used to think you could change society through elections and changing institutions. I think like everybody I’ve had experiences in my life where I’ve learnt that empathy really matters. Do we naturally display empathy? It’s ingrained in our DNA: scientists say about 50% of our empathic capacities are inherited in our genetic makeup. Do you think society is generally empathic? No. Is anyone born without empathy?

How Corporations Will Use Artificial Empathy to Sell Us More Shit Empathy is a tricky business. The range and complexity of human emotion makes it difficult, if not impossible, to ever really understand how someone else is feeling. Nevertheless, empathy is considered to be a crucial aspect of what makes us human—indeed, our brains appear to be hardwired for it. So perhaps it won’t come as much of a surprise that as machine learning becomes ever more sophisticated and capable of mimicking some of the most complex functions of the human brain, figuring out a way to teach a computer empathy is quickly becoming a business in itself. Known as artificial empathy, the idea here is to train machines to recognize social signals from humans, aka ‘visual data,’ and then produce an appropriate response. On the one hand, harnessing artificial empathy is considered an essential step toward integrating robots and artificial intelligences into human society as it will allow for more fluid and affective human-robot interaction.

#18: Will Artificial Intelligence be a Buddha? Is Fear of AI just a symptom of Human Self-Loathing? According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received. The following piece was first published here on June 17, 2015, and is the #18 most viewed of the year. I’m interested in the intersection of consciousness and technology, so when I discovered the Consciousness Hacking MeetUp in Silicon Valley, (organized by IEET Affiliate Scholar Mikey Siegel) I signed up immediately. Soon afterwards, I attended a MeetUp titled, “Enlightened AI”, at Sophia University in Palo Alto. Tarifi’s theory hinged on two points: 1. 2. Tarifi even went so far as to suggest that a fear of AI is merely a fear of one’s own egoic tendencies. To some, this may seem naïve and that the only way to keep AI from killing us is to program it to be good. But that’s not all. Is AI the guru we’ve been waiting for?

The immortalist: Uploading the mind to a computer While many tech moguls dream of changing the way we live with new smart devices or social media apps, one Russian internet millionaire is trying to change nothing less than our destiny, by making it possible to upload a human brain to a computer, reports Tristan Quinn. "Within the next 30 years," promises Dmitry Itskov, "I am going to make sure that we can all live forever." It sounds preposterous, but there is no doubting the seriousness of this softly spoken 35-year-old, who says he left the business world to devote himself to something more useful to humanity. It is a breathtaking ambition, but could it actually be done? "If there is no immortality technology, I'll be dead in the next 35 years," he laments. So Itskov is putting a slice of his fortune in to a bold plan he has devised to bypass ageing. "The ultimate goal of my plan is to transfer someone's personality into a completely new body," he says. Find out more But Ken is a realist. But Itskov is far from home and dry.

The Myth Of AI That mythology, in turn, has spurred a reactionary, perpetual spasm from people who are horrified by what they hear. You'll have a figure say, "The computers will take over the Earth, but that's a good thing, because people had their chance and now we should give it to the machines." Then you'll have other people say, "Oh, that's horrible, we must stop these computers." In the past, all kinds of different figures have proposed that this kind of thing will happen, using different terminology. A good starting point might be the latest round of anxiety about artificial intelligence, which has been stoked by some figures who I respect tremendously, including Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk. The usual sequence of thoughts you have here is something like: "so-and-so," who's a well-respected expert, is concerned that the machines will become smart, they'll take over, they'll destroy us, something terrible will happen. What do I mean by AI being a fake thing? This is not one of those.

The New Copernican Revolution: Fritjof Capra on the Shift to 'The Systems View of Life' Image courtesy Fritjof Capra Fritjof Capra is one of the world’s leading thinkers in systems theory, and the author of many influential books, such as The Tao of Physics; The Web of Life: A New Synthesis of Mind and Matter; The Turning Point: Science, Society and the Rising Culture; The Hidden Connections: A Science for Sustainable Living; and Learning from Leonardo: Decoding the Notebooks of a Genius. Fritjof has described his latest book, The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision as “the realisation of a dream” and it has been written with his long-time friend and colleague Pier Luigi Luisi, one of the world’s leading authorities on the origin of life and self-organisation of synthetic and natural systems. In addition to the book, Fritjof has also recently launched Capra Course, a new online course based on The Systems View of Life. I have been working with Fritjof on the development, management and evolution of Capra Course.

Public Intelligence Blog Click on Image to Enlarge Earth Intelligence Network (EIN) is a Virginia-based non-profit corporation certified as a 501c3 Public Charity. Donations are tax deductible. EIN IRS 501c3 Letter Although EIN has a home page, this web site, Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog, is its portal to content across multiple legacy websites, and the EIN point of interface with the public. The logo consists of the Whole Earth within a Rescue Cross, with four symbols: the bowl for food and water; the quill pen for education and communication; the shovel for construction and development; and the stilleto for the inevitable rogues that need to be killed one at a time. Our mind-set is deeply rooted in Ecological Economics as pioneered by Dr. Here is our “method” graphic. Government — in isolation from the other seven tribes shown in the EIN logo — has failed. OPEN POWER / ELECTORAL REFORM @ Phi Beta Iota This is our short story: 2014 Story Board Short ROBERT DAVID STEELE VIVAS – Founder & Publisher

Artificial Intelligence will not kill us all | WISDOMINATION Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking are worried the human race might be replaced by robots. A couple of problems with that: They never said that, until the news got exaggerated (to put it mildly) by clickbait science & tech tabloids.Although they did not say it, others did – and I disagree.It might be a good thing. From the top: such scandalising journalism is enormously irresponsible, because it warps public perception of science and technology into a cartoon, increasing the risk that important research and groundbreaking discoveries with incalculable benefits to human knowledge and well-being will (again) be opposed by misinformed screaming baboons. There is a gigantic difference between “AI researchers agree we need to develop this in beneficial and controlled ways”, which is what the open letter actually says, and “TWO GREATEST MINDS ALIVE SAY ROBOTS WILL KILL US ALL!”, which is what the headlines said. Now, onto the second point. An important distinction And that’s not real, strong AI.

A glimpse of the future, part two - 70 is the new 30 - Chris Skinner's blog As mentioned yesterday, there’s a big question about what all of this means for financial service. You may not have asked those questions but if life sciences allows people to live for 150 years or more; if babies can be born without defects; if you can design yourself to be whatever you want to be; then that raises all sorts of questions. How will you live in a world where those who can afford it are beautiful and can live for almost ever, whilst those who cannot are secondary. I blogged about these things just last month, so I’m not going to over labour this entry here. However, it is worth thinking about: What pension policy will you need for 150 years of possible life? These are fundamental points primarily for insurance firms who offer critical illness plans, health insurances, pensions and related products. These are insurance challenges, but banks will also find challenges and opportunities here. How will wealth be built and who will be building it?

The Compassionate Society Virtually all the world’s major religions teach that diligent work in the service of others is our highest nature and thus lies at the center of a happy life. Scientific surveys and studies confirm shared tenets of our faiths. Americans who prioritize doing good for others are almost twice as likely to say they are very happy about their lives. In Germany, people who seek to serve society are five times likelier to say they are very happy than those who do not view service as important. This helps explain why pain and indignation are sweeping through prosperous countries. In America today, compared with 50 years ago, three times as many working-age men are completely outside the work force. What can we do to help? Each of us has the responsibility to make this a habit. Leaders need to recognize that a compassionate society must create a wealth of opportunities for meaningful work, so that everyone who is capable of contributing can do so. Building such a society is no easy task.