Imagine you are a superintelligent being, formed by trillions of minds, transcending space and time. By a lucky circumstance you materialize near a planet. You find life on the planet and start to observe some 7 billion humans on their spinning rock called earth. What would you think about humanity and what would you recommend to humans?
Its first thought
“Oh, cool. I just came to the right point in time. In a view blinks they will pass the singularity and evolution will take a completely new route. This is entertaining. I will take a closer look how they master it.”
What humans know about themselves
After materializing more sensors on the planet, the being decodes all our languages and symbols and starts to analyze the extracted information. Curious, the being looks up what humans know about themselves first.
“Oh, they don’t know much about their own consciousness yet. That’s a bummer. Things would get much easier if humans would fully understand how their subconscious system manipulates them into all kinds of troublesome behaviors.”
By chance one of the being’s minds digs into medicine and finds that CRISPR
was discovered recently.
“Well, this is a big step forward for humanity and it will give humans cures for almost all illnesses that plague them now. And it will accelerate the development into singularity. Soon humans will start to enhance their own bodies and brains. Let’s see if they develop a plan where to go.”
Next, sensors record some serious levels of radioactivity and poison in certain areas…
“Ouch, they are still messing with nuclear weapons. This could go wrong big style. A nuclear war would throw them back. Why do they need nukes? Ah, subconscious systems in action… We better install some sentinels to prevent the nukes from starting.”
Alerted by this finding, the being directs more sensors to find out about the chemistry of the planet.
“The level of dangerous and unhealthy exhausts they produce is astonishing. They poison themselves and other living creatures. Statistics indicate that they will soon change the atmosphere to an extent that many parts of the planet will become uninhabitable. They already have the technologies to achieve better results! Why don’t they act?“
Subsequently, it does some statistics on the information content of all communication channels to learn more about human behavior.
“Huh, they feed themselves up with an incredible amount of irrelevant information coming from TV, newspapers and internet. Why do they consume so much information about violence? They possibly had a very violent past? Or is this done by intention to distract humans from the real issues?!?
However, there are some highlights, like information channels which spread the latest ideas on how to improve the situation of humanity. That’s cool.”
The being now focuses on human societies by looking at how humans organize their interactions.
“Most people follow some pretty boring narratives. That is strange. We would have expected much more variation in life of individual humans, given their extraordinary brains and sensitive bodies. Humans seem to prefer obedience over individuality. They are possibly not aware of how many options they have and how easy it would be to create alternative narratives for their lives.”
Next, the transcendent being wants to learn more about human societies and looks into structures of power.
“It seems that very small groups of people run the whole planet. Political power is either legitimated in elections where humans can choose between different biases, or it is enforced by violence. Real power structures are not transparent in human societies and it seems to come from corporate structures more than from political structures.
One way or the other, most humans don’t take part in important decisions. This is particularly bad, since so many vital decisions are ahead. Should they continue making AIs until machines are stronger than humans? Should they alter their evolution? And in which direction? This lack of participation is possibly the most severe issue humans have today. Leaving the rudder to a small group of humans in power.”
After the being found out about corporate structures, it wants to learn about human economy.
“The dominating narrative of human existence requires to earn and spend money to cover basic needs. However, our analysis says that the monetary system is a highly unstable belief system. If it breaks down, humans will starve and die since their complete economy works only with one monetary system. They have no redundancy or backup in this vital system. That’s simply crazy.”
What would this superintelligent being advise us to do?
“If humans would ask me, I would suggest each individual to become a responsible member of a global human society in order to end suffering of humans and nature. Also to take part in the upcoming decisions about AIs, man-made evolution and the development into a transhuman society (as we are). Otherwise a small group of ruling humans will do and all the others will have to suffer.
However, I won’t interfere, it is too entertaining to watch them struggle…”
Image by Tom and Kwikki @ shutterstock