[ExI] DNA India: The transhumanity timeline

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Mon Jun 24 15:06:55 UTC 2013

On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 03:30:16PM +0100, BillK wrote:

> So, you think that a million intelligences (equivalent) existing in a
> small sphere of computronium will not be organised much different from

It's not a small sphere, it's slabs linked up with fat pipes
across planetary surfaces, or gravitationally contained
clouds with LoS photonic signalling.

Substrate follows geography. This is not that different
from how your ecosystem looks like. 

> present human society?

Not just human society. Humans are a transient species, and
will be over pretty soon.
> Even society in the stages approaching this phase will be changing in
> ways that we can't really contemplate.

If you're making predictions, you have to make reasonable
assumptions. If you pick the constraints that they occupy
space, need energy and atoms and Darwin still applies (it
does apply to us, and every other imperfectly self-replicating
system, the feature of errors and limitedness and hence
selection pressure are really secondary and emerge naturally)
then certain things do follow.

You'll notice that particular point in the ability to process
information is not part of it. Because it's not necessary, 
and does not change the outcome.
> >
> > But there will be far more species than than we have now.
> > More diversity, more diversity in behavior.
> >
> Posthumans have the power to diverge, but they also have the power to

No, they have not the power to diverge, they *must* diverge.
They have no power to not to diverge.

> converge towards the optimum. Higher intelligences will probably value
> more efficient computation and seize on each improvement as it

We already know how perfect classical computation looks like.
We also know how to work around Landauer's limit, at the cost
of speed, which might not an option because if you're too slow
you're good with ketchup. Predators and prey will be fast, so 
perhaps no adiabatic computing for them.

> arrives.
> To me you seem to hold some contradictory opinions. (Not unusual, most

They do resolve nicely over here, so perhaps the contradictions are
only apparent.

> people do).  :)
> You seem to have an emotional attachment to the Star Trek style of

I hate Star Drek with a passion. For the same reason Asimov is
so horribly dull. They have no imagination, a mechanistic way
of looking at things which where thoroughly obsolete at the time
of their writing.

Popular stuff is always subject to Sturgeon's law. 

> humans (or solid state copies) rampaging across the galaxy. I see the

We don't rampage. We live here. Please do not step on the
grass, it hates that and will bite your ankles clean off.

> appeal, but to me logic seems to indicate that future won't happen.

Logic seems to indicate that we fully follow the Limits of Rome
business as usual trajectory, and go out with a whimper and a 
bang at 2050 or thereabouts. Logic is also a pretty flower
that smells bad.

> You also like uploading, computronium, solid-state AIs, etc. but you

No, I like postbiota. The terms you use are quite steampunky, but people
have to use analogies, like cogs and wheels, and belts, and pneumatic
pipes, or these new-fangled paper tape looms. What will they think
of next?

> seem to think that once humans upload into a ball of fast computronium

There is no ball.

> that they won't much like it there and return to the slow outside
> universe.

How do you return to something you never left in the first place?
Why are there so many goddamn dualists roaming the premises?
Shoo! Shoo! You can't stop here, this is materialist country.
> I go along with Keith's thinking, that fast processing intelligences

They're not intelligences, and not nessarily faster. It all
depends on the fitness function. A girl has to eat, after all.

> won't travel in the (to them) dead outside universe. A step further is

If you're a slab of catatonic organics in the landscape, then 
you are not a slab of organics much longer. This nanomold kills,

> that fast processing intelligences linked inextricably in a
> computronium universe won't even consider the idea of leaving. It
> would be like dying to them.

What is left of the Internet if you remove all the AS, the switches,
routers, fiber? Your cloud cuckoo land seems to have a very real
underpinnings under it. 

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