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#3 The planetary consciousness

Interview Sequences with Leon Tsvasman powered by "Intelligent World"*


Intelligent world: So does it just need enough computing power, enough complex neural networks - and then a machine does develop consciousness at some point? Would we humans even realize this?


Tsvasman: That question reminds me of the idea of ​​the “noosphere”. It was set up in the early 20th century in parallel by the Russian philosopher and geologist Wladimir Wernadski and the French natural scientist and theologian Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, probably independently of each other. Transferred to today's technology: If all the AIs in the world are networked with one another, they could develop into technical “world consciousness”.


Whereby our civilization - the actual human environment - is socio-technical-cultural and does not represent a direct continuation of biological evolution. In fact, a “planetary consciousness” would probably arise from the symbiosis of the “technical brain of the world”, which is somewhat comparable to the limbic system of our brain, and human consciousness.

The computing power of countless quantum computers and highly complex neural networks networked over undreamt-of bandwidths is of no use without data that it can process. And data processed by such a “strong AI” only becomes information or knowledge when people can understand it in their own human way. This is already the problem with big data and business intelligence (BI). This is about applied science, in order to gain valid knowledge from data and to be able to carry out economically target-oriented activities on this basis or to be able to make strategic decisions, for example.


If networked quantum computers with neural networks were to record everything that is only approximately relevant in the world - every movement in the macro and microcosm, the body data of all people and so on - in real time, then everything that can be imagined in principle would be feasible in this world. So it depends on us what we can imagine.


Artificial intelligence as a tool: We imagined flying carpets and planes became


But first we have to learn to keep control in the sense of the potential of all people in this world - and that is the most important cybernetic problem of the current time: We can deal with the complexity of a global world with its exponential developments of big data via the corona virus up to climate change and the population explosion, we cannot cope without global AI. The reduction of complexity that we have always been forced to pursue - so that we can achieve something together at all - is just reaching its limits. So we should first build the right tool, namely a global AI, and learn to master it without having to slow down its efficiency. In addition to the cybernetic problem, this also poses an ethical problem. So we have to develop an ethical imperative for AI - the fictional three robot laws are not sufficient for this.


By the way, it has always been the case that technology made our ideas a reality, even if these ideas were a bit idiosyncratic beforehand. We imagined flying carpets and there were planes.

In a virtual augmented digital reality with global AI, there would be no more limits. The greatest challenge will be to develop a workable vision for this. This challenge for humanity is more difficult and exciting than anything we have had to tackle together up to now.