Ray Kurzweil just faded out from my iPad as I was watching one of his lectures/speaches. He was talking as usual about how fast technology has evolved an will continue to evolve as time passes by. He also talked about the nature of technologies exponential growth and even game some insight into what the future might look like. Michio Kaku replaced Ray in my iPad. This time the subject of type I, type II, and type III civilizations came to be mentioned as he gave a speach about his new book titled Physics of the Future. What do both of these intelectual subjects have in common? And is there a conclusion we can draw from them?
If we take into consideration both characters ability to predict the future we must say that Ray Kurzweil has a high probability of being correct and even a bit conservative. If that is the case then within 25 years we will have the ability to blend with AI and blur the line completely into what it means to be human and real. In correlation with Michio, this will not necessary lead us into a type I civilization which is one that can control the planets energy (volcanos, rain, plants etc) to our and the planets benefit, but given the technology that AI will bring with its evolution, its hard not to think that it will certainly give us a big boost into a type I kind of civilization.
Now lets take a step back. Ray Kurzweil mentions a lot second life and how it has grown into encompassing many if not close to all activities that a regular/average human has. Increasing its graphics in order to make it seem more real and expanding the number of users it has, second life is a good example of how we humans can exist in a parallel reality with technology. The smarter the AI gets, the better the ability of the characters to interact with their enviorment and why not the cooler the posibilities of creating a non existing enviorment where for instance the laws of physics do not apply. What kind of civilization is this in Michio’s view? Is this a type I or II or III? Or rather is it a type -1, one that is manipulated by another kind of being in this case the human.
The characters of Second Life react to laws (coded) that can easily be meshed with the laws of physics and as it evolves and we get to understand more human behavior, themes such as feelings and attituedes and personality will also be able to be coded into the characters, giving them a sort of life/existance. But what good does that do to us?
Now here is were it gets a bit crazy. Imagine that you are a very advanced beeing and that the technology that you currently use allows you to have a super advanced second life character. One that wakes up every morning, has breakfast, goes to work, has relationships, suffers, enjoys, creates mathematical models to predict the future, seeks out side and inside of him self in order to understand etc etc. And what if this character could feed to you what the character learns and experiences. This character allows you to learn from what the character interacts with in his/hers every day life given that all that it computes is feed to you via an amazing device that is hooked up to your brain. An amazing device kind of like emotive but reversed (which by the way can be acquired for 500 bucks… the developer version =).
Instead of putting info into the computer, you take out of it and use that info to feed your brain. Wouldn’t this allow you to experiment some on else’s life entirely? or to what ever extent the definition of being alive in that concept allows you to be a part of? Now take that same idea and multiply it times the n number of possible imaginative worlds that one can create in a virtual reality. Imagine that in each one of those worlds you have a character that personifies a kind of being that is different from the rest of your characters. This would allow you to fully understand concepts from a broad range of personalities and rationals in order to comprehend the absolute definition of a concept.
Lets step back a bit an analyze how the less human we become the more we know and the more we “do”. As humans have evolved, the use of their bodies has diminished and the use of their brain has increased. Now a days one can simply type a thought and feed it to the world. Something like this 20 years ago would have been completely impossible and or would have taken several years in order to arrange and spread. We basically do more with less and that keeps getting faster as technology allows us to do more and more and more.
What if for instance we developed a device that allowed us to read a book within seconds. By understangind a brains synapsis and the process of laearning we can potentially speed it up as well and generate it with some kind of device that activates that same synapsis but faster and more efficiently. Yes I know sounds very much like the matrix but to be honest, it is not far from reality. If we are able to send messages to a computer (please look at the emotive link ) how far are we from putting information from the computer into the brain?
Now if this were the case and we were able to absorbe more information faster and not only absorbe that informatino but comprehend it (which is the key) then we can do more with it. But this is only correlated with our human selves. We can do more with that information in order to improve our human lives, our work condition, our daily habits, our knowledge on how the body works etc. And this in its self will lead to a faster evolution of technology and the way we live.
But what about our virtual life? our seond life? Well in order to be able to have a grasp on what we are experiencing we would have to let it follow a path of its own and with the spark of creativity (if we ever manage to code such an algorithm) we can leave that beeing to evolve as we continue to evolve our own current life. Hooking up to it every now and then in order to see how it is learning what it is learning and why it is learning it that way instead of another way.
By beeing able to tap into this secod life character and dump all of its information into our brain we would be actually living a second life. And if we are able to do this with multiple characters…. well you get the point.
This arises to bring the concept of the infinite you. The you that has evolved through out time and that has created multiple beings within their holographic universe that allows them to continue evolving at their own speed and that ultimately feed you with the knowledge that they acquire. Scientia potentia est or knowledge is power, attributed to Sir Francis Bacon, one of the worlds most thoughtful philosophers and scientist of his time would have quite a precedent in the concept of infinite you’s due to technology.