[ExI] How to pre-empt the singularity was Re: Column- "Why the Singularity isn't going to happen"

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Sun Oct 17 20:50:06 UTC 2010

On Sat, Oct 16, 2010 at 5:02 PM, Keith Henson <hkeithhenson at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sat, Oct 16, 2010 at 11:44 AM, Tom Nowell <nebathenemi at yahoo.co.uk> wrote:
> snip
>> Yes, transhumanists almost all believe that technology will bring more benefits than problems (with the exception of a few "the singularity will destroy us" types).
> In the same sense that "growing up destroys the child," the
> singularity is extremely likely to destroy us.

### I am very much the "singularity will destroy us" type and for some
time I have been thinking about any feasible ways of escaping Skynet's
bots. I expect that my current work on mitochondrial therapies may be
more or less complete within the next 10 years, and the escape from
singularity question merges with "What to do with my life next?".

Currently I think that switching to working on brain-machine interface
would be the best way for me. With further advances in neural stem
cell manipulation we should be able to design cells capable of growing
axons and dendrites in the adult central nervous system, and
interfacing with both existing neural structures and with implanted
communication devices. This type of technology would allow massively
parallel monitoring of human neural network traffic at the single
synapse level, with multiple readouts from each cortical column, as
well as manipulation of traffic with addressing of specific synapses.
It would have many orders of magnitude more comm bandwidth than
current BMI devices. Algorithms that reconstruct functionally
equivalent or quasi-equivalent networks from a sufficient sample of
network traffic already exist, at least if you have some idea of the
structure of the network's nodes, and for the brain we do. My skills
in molecular biology would be somewhat useful in parts of the project,
so I could transition into the effort without having to make a total
break with my current mindset.

Eventually, it should be in this way possible to upload an adult human
mind into a non-biological substrate while maintaining legal person
continuity - have upload neural implant sprout through your aging
brain and take over increasing fractions of processing, until your
body is just a puppet your mostly uploaded and vastly expanded mind is
using to make legal claims on its own behalf. At some point legal
recognition of upload personhood would occur, and my cryonics policy
could be allowed to lapse. If the upload can be achieved by more or
less brute force reconstruction of my own neural network in an exaflop
computer, I might be there even before AI's built from code up are
potent enough to destroy me.

This is so far the only plausible way I see of avoiding doom at the
singularity, by diving very literally head-first into the maw.

Does anybody have other specific plans for saving self?


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