[ExI] "Toward a Type 1 civilization" by Michael Shermer

Bryan Bishop kanzure at gmail.com
Mon Aug 4 01:09:37 UTC 2008

On Sunday 03 August 2008, Samantha Atkins wrote:
> On Jul 30, 2008, at 11:15 AM, Michael LaTorra  (quoting from
> excellent Michael Shermer piece) wrote:
> > Type 1.0: Globalism that includes worldwide wireless Internet
> > access, with all knowledge digitized and available to everyone. A

Not necessarily wireless of course. Wired connections aren't evil.

> > completely global economy with free markets in which anyone can
> > trade with anyone else without interference from states or

Yeah, but there's still an architecture behind it, no matter how little 
you know about the DNS admins that are running the scene under your 

> > governments. A planet where all states are democracies in which
> > everyone has the franchise.

Not necessarily democracies though.

> Yes!  This has been part of what I see as near term extropic goals
> for some time now.   The world wide web is how the true "global
> brain" comes into being.  Right now the global brain is largely

There's certainly the possibility of doing distributed brain computing, 
but on the other hand you're probably talking about the 
typical "internet as part of my neural system" which is an ok idea too.

> stroking out with relatively random fits of activity and some actual
> good functioning.  It is nowhere near what a fully activated healthy
> global brain would be.   Here in the early 21st century the reality

I would be interested in hearing your ideas about health monitoring for 
a global brain. There are all sorts of diagnostic possibilities but 
nothing that is yet correlated to the semantics related to healthy 

> is that the internet is nearly utterly unattainable for much of
> humanity. Even where I am in the very heart of Silicon Valley there

That's not true. Go help out the ronja project. It's something like 
usual optics for 1 km of connectivity distance via very, very bright 
lights. There's also the SolarNetOne project. 


"Gnuveau proudly announces SolarNetOne, a solar powered multi-user Linux 
Terminal Server network, with integrated long range wireless access 
point, analog telephone adapter, proximity based security system, and 
many other features. Please click the image below for more information 
on the green computing solution SolarNetOne."

> was exactly one and only one way to get reasonably functional
> internet access. That is true in most of the US, that is in those
> places where you can get anything but dial up.   I just saw a map of

Well, that's commercialized access -- if you really wanted it, deploy 
Ronja < http://ronja.twibright.com/ >.

> many contributions to our total knowledge, power, understanding, joy,
> live are we missing by these great fissures and chasms in the global 
> brain?  If I was 20 years old again I could think of few better
> things to make a career of than ensuring that the global brain is
> fully connected up.

Well, what's what makes a 'career' good though? There's probably some 
other interesting things to be doing around this time that would be on 
the same general area of thought as global brain health, but not about 

> Sharing of knowledge, information also exponentially increases our
> total pool of truth wealth (knowledge, ability, joy).   There are


> > The opposition toward a global economy is substantial, even in the
> > industrialized West, where economic tribalism still dominates the
> > thinking of most politicians, intellectuals and citizens.
> This is in large part scarcity thinking at work.  It is deeply
> ingrained and it has more than a little basis in fact today even in
> relatively affluent societies.   There is a chicken and egg problem.

Bootstrapping problems kind of rely on philanthropy in some cases. 
There's little other way to make it happen -- you have to be where the 
ball stops and actually get it done. It's kinda hard. Might be 
your "shift" that you mentioned.

- Bryan
Engineers: http://heybryan.org/exp.html
irc.freenode.net #hplusroadmap

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