Re: Genetic Myopia

Anders Sandberg (
Thu, 12 Jun 1997 23:30:58 +0200 (MET DST)

On Thu, 12 Jun 1997, Rick Knight wrote:

> Could the torch possibly be ready to pass from physical
> matter-bound immortality to a lighter energy form?

Personally I think this is the logical step, although I would not
call it a "lighter energy form" (that term in my opinion reeks of
cheap new age). I think information is the future. Information is of
course always implemented in matter or energy, but the point is that
it can be abstracted and copied into new matrices (this shows me to
be a believer in the Strong AI Hypothesis); information is the
"light energy" which can be easily transferred, stored, mutated and

> Don't know about some of you but being fabulously wealthy in a chateau
> by the sea with plenty of servants and assured physical immortality
> doesn't hold a candle to the ability to experience the consciousness
> of an eagle over the mountains, a wave cresting, a thunderhead
> culminating, a whale breaching, a redwood capturing a spring breeze, .
> I could actually see spending even a fraction of eternity (lets say a
> thousand millennia) instilling my matter-emancipated consciousness
> into other physical manifestations and assimilating the "knowing" of
> the experience into my being(acquiring experience, BTW, is what I've
> assigned to be the meaning of life). Experience is the ultimate
> upload. Matter-bound existence seriously limits the quality and
> quantity of experience gathering I suspect.

As somebody put it: "the best way of not making a mind is not to give
it a body". We need to be embodied in some sense to have experiences,
to be able to grow. Of course, this embodiment may be quite different
from our current form (digital signals in a computer, quantum
fluctuations, cards in Searle's chinese room).

I think it is very useful to experience "being" different kinds of
systems, although I don't see how you could experience being a
thundercloud. Maybe you could map its dynamics into your sensory
input, possibly even emotional signals?

> So what of it? Care to engage in a discussion as to whether genes
> will have soon served their usefulness and will give way to higher
> forms of communicating essence and design to (for the next several
> billion years) a blooming and fertile universe?

I don't think anybody here disputes this view much. What may be more
interesting to discuss is how to practically make this transition.

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y