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The possibility exists that cultural evolution over the long time scales of the universe has resulted in something beyond biology, namely, artificial intelligence (AI). Such a post biological universe cannot mean a universe devoid of biological intelligence, since humans are an obvious counterexample. Nor does it mean a universe devoid of lower forms of life. Rather, the post biological universe is one in which the majority of intelligent life has evolved beyond flesh and blood intelligence, in proportion to its longevity.
This brain swap may not be as far off for humans as one might think. In only a few decades, the computer revolution here on Earth has produced supercomputers capable of performing more than a quadrillion calculations per second. (According to research by Hans Moravec, an artificial intelligence expert at Carnegie Mellon University, that trumps the human brain's estimated top speed of 100 trillion calculations per second.)
Some scientists speculate that in a few decades, an event called the technological singularity will occur, and machines armed with computer brains will become sentient and surpass human intelligence.
Civilizations equipped with technology light-years ahead of our own could have already experienced the singularity thousands or even millions of years ago.
”We conclude that the conventional radio SETI assuming beamed broadcasts from targets - selected exclusively on the basis of the old fashioned biological paradigm - within the vicinity of our Solar System is ill-founded and has minuscule chances of success."
Cirkovic and Bradbury.
Having dispatched copies of itself, a probe would begin to explore the star system in which it found itself. It would conduct scientific research and transmit the results back to the point of origin. It could also be used as a means of interstellar colonization by constructing an artificial life-sustaining environment and then implanting this with synthesized fertile egg-cells bearing genomes transcribed from the probe's computer memory.
Eiseley has suggested that the embryonic individuals of such a colony could be tended by robots, also built by the probe, until they were old enough to function independently. They would then be free to develop their own civilization around the host star.
First Humanoid Robot That Will Develop Language May Be Coming Soon
ScienceDaily (Mar. 4, 2008) — iCub, a one metre-high baby robot which will be used to study how a robot could quickly pick up language skills, will be available next year.
Professor Chrystopher Nehaniv and Professor Kerstin Dautenhahn at the University of Hertfordshire’s School of Computer Science are working with an international consortium led by the University of Plymouth on ITALK (Integration and Transfer of Action and Language Knowledge in Robots), which begins on 1 March.
ITALK aims to teach the robot to speak by employing the same methods used by parents to teach their children. Professor Nehaniv and Professor Dautenhahn, who are European leaders in Artificial Intelligence and Human Robot Interaction, will conduct experiments in human and robot language interaction to enable the robot to converse with humans.
Typical experiments with the iCub robot will include activities such as inserting objects of various shapes into the corresponding holes in a box, serialising nested cups and stacking wooden blocks. Next, the iCub will be asked to name objects and actions so that it acquires basic phrases such as "robot puts stick on cube".
Originally posted by Zepherian
Welcome to the nightmare world of tecnocratic transhumanism, where a couple of second rate philosophers and elitist aristocrats plan the demise of not only the human race but the entire biosphere.
If I thought there was a bright future in transhumanistic machine based lifeforms I could go along with this, but am I the only one that thinks this is madness?
Originally posted by Zepherian
Well, I won't argue that machines could over time reach the complexity of biological lifeforms. What I don't understand is why would even need to make the switch, when there is so much potential in the current organic life base we occupy. To me it seems two steps backwards and one step forward.
Originally posted by Res Ipsa
I just hope we never need a John Connor
to save us.
Originally posted by Zepherian
We need to heal ourselves and realise that the true role of tecnology is not to replace us but to complement our own living spiritual and fraternal humanity. Anything less is to be fought for the mad delusions of arrogant scientists and authors, imho.
[edit on 13-8-2008 by Zepherian]
The Cylons were created by Man.
They were created to make life easier on the Twelve Colonies.
And then the day came when the Cylons decided to kill their masters. After a long and bloody struggle, an armistice was declared.
The Cylons left for another world to call their own.
A remote space station was built...
Where Cylon and human could meet and maintain diplomatic relations.
Every year, the Colonials send an officer...
The Cylons send no one.
No-one has seen or heard from the Cylons in over forty years... ---Opening text of the Battlestar Galactica Miniseries
Humanoid Cylons are the quintessential Cylon form in the Re-imagined Series. These Cylons biologically mimic human form so completely that they are nearly undetectable to current Colonial technologies. Humanoid Cylons have the capacity to emulate many human physical acts, including sex. They also display convincingly human personalities (affection, jealousy, sadness, anger, sense of humor, religious faith, etc.) This behavior continues even when interacting with other Cylons outside of Colonial scrutiny, clearly establishing that their personalities are genuine. The humanoid Cylons are responsible for masterminding the complete destruction of the Twelve Colonies through their use of sabotage and infiltration.