Podcast No. 91 Posted 02/28/2012   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 91 Posted 02/28/2012

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TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The “Who” of Terasem  1.10-1.10.6

SUB TITLE:  Expansion of Terasem

SUMMARY:  Terasem’s goal is to expand its principles of positive networking with rapid yet safe technological growth so as to attract into its network those with a high inclination for further fostering such networking and growth, spreading throughout the Cosmos.  One key principle, for example is the avoidance of destructive competition.

Music  – “Earthseed” fades out, as the voice recording begins.

 

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 91 on the Truths of Terasem.  Here, we’re going to focus on the expansion of Terasem in the widest sense of that term.  The journey starts with 1.10: “Endogamous offspring such as cyber-communities will grow inside Terasem until the universe is endogenous to Terasem.”

(Linda)  That’s inspiring.  With all the bad stuff that’s happening in our world, and even just a glimmer of what Terasem is all about, one can see how important it is for the Terasem collective consciousness and the Terasem ideals to permeate our culture. If they don’t, homo sapiens are not likely to exist much longer.

(Fred)  A simple way to envision how this could work would be to imagine a carbon atom having the goal of attracting as many carbon atoms as possible to join it in forming a network of diamond lace that is everywhere throughout the universe and has been assembled so that the weave of the latticework of lace makes it impossible to destroy, yet it does not necessarily take carbon away from other networks; it enables other carbon atoms to link with it in such a way that their freedom to link with other atoms is otherwise not restricted.

Thinking in terms of people instead of carbon atoms, the first element of this Expansion, 1.10.1 tells us: “It only takes one soul, of any vitology, to start a Terasem center of critical consciousness.”  This means that the choice to join Terasem is a totally individual one, anyone can do it, and joining only necessitates the recognition of Terasem’s most basic principles.

(Linda)  The next is 1.10.2:  “Nothing can stop the relentless spread of intelligence through the universe.”  This is very general, but I’d take it to be just one step up the extropy ladder from saying that biological life will spring into existence given a very wide range of starting environments, and then has the potential to develop intelligence.  James Gardner, in his book The Intelligent Universe: AI, ET and the Emerging Mind of the Cosmos says it this way:

“…we and other living creatures throughout the cosmos are part of a vast, still undiscovered transterrestrial community of lives and intelligences spread across billions of galaxies and countless parsecs who are collectively engaged in a portentous mission of truly cosmic importance.  Under the Biocosm vision, we share a common fate with that community—to help shape the future of the universe and transform it from a collection of lifeless atoms into a vast transcendent mind.”

(Fred)  Once we reach a sufficient intelligence plateau, the possibility of escaping the planet of our origin exists.  So long as there are no electric fences out there in the vast reaches of the Universe that we cannot cross, we should be able to spread our own intelligence throughout the Cosmos.  It’s only a matter of time, but that’s a subject for a different podcast. Without Geoethical Nanotechnology as described by Terasem, an intelligent and technological species is more likely to destroy itself than to survive.  That’s a subject we will elaborate on in a different podcast, too.  But, based on that premise, we can have confidence that, as Terasem expands throughout the universe, other intelligent and technological cultures we encounter will have developed principles so compatible with those of Terasem that there will be no difficulty in finding common ground, uniting and expanding outward together.

(Linda) Now let’s move on to 1.10.3 “Self-replicating systems are the key to wrapping intelligence around the universe.”  Well, that sounds pretty reasonable.  The foundation of all biological life is self-replicating systems: all living cells, including viruses and bacteria.

(Fred)  In his book The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology, Ray Kurzweil gives us one intriguing scenario for using self-replicating systems to spread intelligence throughout the cosmos.  To do it justice, we need to quote several long paragraphs.  Linda, why don’t we alternate in reading this.

(L) Sure.  Why don’t you go first.

(F) Okay.  “Once we do expand our intelligence beyond the solar system, at what rate will this take place? The expansion will not start out at the maximum speed; it will quickly achieve a speed within a vanishingly small change from the maximum speed (speed of light or greater). Some critics have objected to this notion, insisting that it would be very difficult to send people (or advanced organisms from any other ETI civilization) and equipment at near the speed of light without crushing them. Of course, we could avoid this problem by accelerating slowly, but another problem would be collisions with interstellar material. But again, this objection entirely misses the point of the nature of intelligence at this stage of development.

(Linda) “Early ideas about the spread of ETI through the galaxy and universe were based on the migration and colonization patterns from our human history and basically involved sending settlements of humans (or, in the case of other ETI civilizations, intelligent organisms) to other star systems. This would allow them to multiply through normal biological reproduction and then continue to spread in like manner from there. But as we have seen, by late in this century nonbiological intelligence on the Earth will be many trillions of times more powerful than biological intelligence, so sending biological humans on such a mission would not make sense. The same would be true for any other ETI civilization. This is not simply a matter of biological humans sending robotic probes. Human civilization by that time will be nonbiological for all practical purposes.

(Fred) “These nonbiological sentries would not need to be very large and in fact would primarily comprise information. It is true, however, that just sending information would not be sufficient, for some material-based device that can have a physical impact on other star and planetary systems must be present. However, it would be sufficient for the probes to be self-replicating nanobots (note that a nanobot has nanoscale features but that the overall size of a nanobot is measured in microns). We could send swarms of many trillions of them, with some of these “seeds” taking root in another planetary system and then replicating by finding the appropriate materials, such as carbon and other needed elements, and building copies of themselves. Once established, the nanobot colony could obtain the additional information it needs to optimize its intelligence from pure information transmissions that involve only energy, not matter, and that are sent at the speed of light. Unlike large organisms such as humans, these nanobots, being extremely small, could travel at close to the speed of light.

(Linda) “Another scenario would be to dispense with the information transmissions and embed the information needed in the nanobots’ own memory. That’s an engineering decision we can leave to these future superengineers. The software files could be spread out among billions of devices. Once one or a few of them get a “foothold” by self-replicating at a destination, the now much larger system could gather up the nanobots traveling in the vicinity so that from that time on, the bulk of the nanobots sent in that direction do not simply fly by. In this way, the now established colony can gather up the information, as well as the distributed computational resources, it needs to optimize its intelligence.”

(Fred) That’s a fascinating example, and of course, there would be many others, but unfortunately we don’t have time here to explore then all.  In 1.10.4 we find “Instill the principles of Geoethics in all self-replicating systems.”  As Ray Kurzweil, Eric Drexler, and so many others involved with nanotechnology have pointed out so clearly, to be effective, nanometer-sized machines need to come in the trillions. The only way to achieve this economically is by letting the machines build themselves.  But that requires that they have geoethics built into those little buggers.  And, fortunately, that will be possible, as Allen and Wallach have made happily clear in their wonderful book, Moral Machines:

“There is little evidence that moral decision making in humans follows any formal procedure.  Most decision making is somewhat messy, drawing on emotions, moral sentiments, intuitions, heuristics in the form of automated responses, rules and duties, and perhaps some explicit valuation of utility or expected outcomes.  Future moral agents (artificial intelligence programmed with moral decision making abilities) may consider a broader array of proposals, objections, and supporting evidence than a human agent can, and thereby, perhaps, select a more satisfactory course of action than many humans.”

(Linda) I can tell you, that book helped me sleep better at night!  From there, we continue to 1.10.5  “Diversity is the fruit of endogeny in the nursery of Terasem.” As we know, diversity is fundamental to biological evolution.  So this fits perfectly with the introduction to this expansion which says: “Endogamous offspring such as cyber-communities will grow inside Terasem until the universe is endogenous to Terasem.”

(Fred) If we have adequately provided for Geoethical Nanotechnology and then move outward into the Cosmos, networking successfully with all other conscious species we find, meaning those with empathy and ethics, that means we have to be virtually unrestricted in our abilities to appreciate and respect all of them, to find value in their own particular histories of passing the technological Singularity.

(Linda) In other words, we absolutely have to avoid poisonous behaviors like discrimination and domination!  Only by embracing every diverse kind consciousness can we hope to fulfill the destiny the Truths of Terasem have envisioned as being possible!

(Fred)  Right!  Or, I might even say, “Right on!”  We wind up this week’s podcast with 1.10.6:  “Encourage the formation of Terasem centers of critical consciousness (c-cubes) everywhere.”  I love that!  It’s a message that we can give everyone.  Join Terasem and become a member of  a center of critical consciousness, yourself!  The degree to which you expand on that is up to you, but we encourage you to expand on it boundlessly and endlessly, forever.  As we said in the last podcast:

“In 1.9.5 we find, “Life is not what you are made of but is what you make of it.”  If you see the essentiality of empathy and ethics to what Terasem calls consciousness, this enables you to take these two aspects of your life more seriously.  Being self-conscious, you are the steering wheel of your life, and the roads you take will determine your destiny to a large extent.  In Michael Perry’s Forever for All, he states this as (quote), “Our basic and, in my view, unlimited worth lies not so much in what we are or have been but in what we can become.”

(Linda)  Next week, we’re going on to the next section of the Truths of Terasem which cover WHAT is Terasem.  We will answer the question: Why is Terasem called a “transreligion”?  And we will look deeply into the subjects of immortality, identity migration, and transferring personal identity to a cyber-substrate.

(Fred)  Find out how to join Terasem and become a member of a center of critical consciousness.  Go to terasemfaith.net so you can be right at the heart of this.  And Martine Rothblatt’s blog, mindclones.blogspot.com, answers all your questions about mindfiles.

(Linda)  To get a running start on building your own mindfile, go to either CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com, and remember, there are no fees to participate.  For a fun and easy way to build your mindfiles, check out the powerful Android app at Personality MD.com.  Tens of thousands of these have been downloaded, and it just keeps growing, every week.

(Fred)  If you like the music we use on these podcasts, which runs full length at the end of each podcast,  it’s the Terasem Anthem, called Earthseed, written by Martine Rothblatt.  She also plays flute and keyboard.  For a video version of Earthseed, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

(Linda) It’s going to be spectabulous at the end of the yellow brick road, so…  Join us, on our quest for an endless and joyful future…

(Fred)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.

 

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Posted February 28, 2012 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

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