Recently I came across discussions on various extinction and doomsday scenarios.
Yuval Harari eloquently warned us against global warming, nuclear wars and “When Biologists meet Technologists”. He reassured us that general AI would not be a threat, because all AI needed to do, in order to manipulate us, was to merely knew us better than we knew ourselves, a bar that was depressingly low to clear. Oh, here comes an important piece of news, recommended by my news app, that would further entrench my buttress position in my wonderful fortress of wokeness.
Rob Reid’s TED Talk convinced us that we were not evolved to wrap our heads around exponential growth, unintentional consequences, and unintentional consequences that manifest exponentially. What? Inertia scrolling and rubber band effects are bad for us?! Darn you, Steve!
Reid’s talks with Naval presented a convincing case why 3D printing a sneeze would be the most practical option for nutcases to use to eliminate mankind, and “on a long enough time scale, all things are likely to happen”, good or bad.
What can we do? Here is the bad news. Not much.
If you are a scientist, programmer, policy maker, billionaire, law maker, or someone with any degrees that aren’t social science or business or art related, you could attempt to build blockchains, systems, robots, and or policies to get ahead of the bad.
If under the rare scenario where companies are willing to listen, writers, dreamers, and imagineers could help companies come up with “Black Mirror” scenarios so everyone could think twice.
If you trust Yuval, then meditate nonstop in order to know yourself better, sooner.
I am none of these. What can I do?
I will try and not become a nutcase.
I will try and not turn my kids into nutcases.
I will spend the rest of my life figuring out how to contribute to the slow down of our society’s amazing ability to drive ourselves crazy.
I will post these thoughts on Facebook.