Saturday, December 20, 2014

A new take on the Fermi Paradox

Simply stated: The universe is largely populated by super-intelligent AI robots, and we're too stupid and boring to to have a meaningful conversation.

Here's the popularized article.
Here's the original academic article.

To be fair about the content of these two articles, it doesn't directly tackle the Fermi Paradox but rather is a speculative try at describing what kind of alien beings we may encounter in the coming decades.  The answer to the Paradox just kind of falls out of it. 

I'm not sure I'm on board with this idea of a universe full of SAI, but it is intriguing.  More to the point though, here's my question: can AI observation cause a collapse of mixed quantum states into a single, sensible result?  That is, what happens if you make an AI, however advanced, the observer in a Schrodinger's Cat experiment?  I suspect that the answer is no, that it's just the old Chinese Room scenario, and that the observation stack is merely pushed up one level.

Maybe that's why these hypothetical SAI robots keep us around: we keep reality happening.  (Remember folks, you heard it here first!)

This post wouldn't be complete without a link to the Wikipedia article on Fermi's Paradox, so there it is.  Also, it seems like a good time point to the now classic sci-fi story They're Made Out of Meat.

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