REACHING FOR SYNTHETIC GHOSTS
MONOLOGUE WRITTEN BY CLYDE LEWIS
Last weekend, my wife and I went to see the new Terminator film, Dark Fate. I was told by a listener that she was very happy that she listens to my show because she understood it better than most because we have talked about time loops and paradoxes and quantum entanglements on the show.
Well, the new film has plenty of that and if you aren’t paying attention most of it will go over your head. I personally like the Terminator franchise mainly because the whole point is robots, and guns, and explosions, and computers, and more explosions.
Then, of course, there is that nuisance known as the timeline. People sometimes forget that while there is plenty of action and scary robots there is that one element that has to be addressed and that is how the timelines work.
There’s no need to complicate things with actual physics. They’re not meant to hold up to actual time-travel paradigms. But if you know the Novikov self-consistency principle, they’re a hell of a lot more fun to watch.
In this film, the Novikov Principle applies until it doesn’t and then we start seeing ghosts of things past present and future trying to sew up a time paradox that would take an entire show to explain.
So in a nutshell, the Novikov self-consistency principle holds that time paradoxes are not entirely possible.
What physicist Igor Novikov stipulated in the 1980s was: If you went back in time, the probability that you could change the past in any significant way is zero.
We have explained this stuff before with Marshall Barnes.
Novikov and his contemporaries held that while the theory of general relativity maintained that “closed timelike curves” were possible, and thus so were trips back in time, people could only perform actions that wouldn’t change the past; they had to be consistent with what had already happened (hence the name).
Unlike the grandfather paradox, which frets over what happens if you go back and kill your father or mother’s dad and eliminate your own existence, Novikov’s principle states that you simply would not, could not do that. What’s already happened has already happened.
Without giving out major spoilers (and maybe I am), if you go to see the new Terminator movie, you may as well just throw the old timeline away because if you remember from previous movies, Sara Connor was able to stop Cyberdyne and Skynet from annihilating the planet.
So a new timeline formed but of course mankind doesn’t learn from their past histories and so a new Artificial Intelligence network is introduced – it is called Legion.
What’s more interesting, though, is applying the Novikov principle to the actions of Skynet and/or Legion. For as long as there have been Terminator films there has been this idea that an all-powerful Artificial Intelligence decided the best way to stop their own demise is to send a Terminator back in time to kill the person who is trying to overthrow them.
However, the better idea would be to send back Terminators that can actually meld with humans so that they become part of their violent anti-human network. The Borg from Star Trek got it right – why fight when you can assimilate?
Why eliminate a resource? It would be prudent for the machines to somehow incarnate into some of the humans in order to raise an army to wipe out the majority of them.
Organic Singularity and Mechanical Singularity happening in tandem would be the optimum control mechanism for a future where humans become more like machines and eventually render themselves extinct – or void of all of what can be called their humanity.
The thing that is most disconcerting is that Legion, the fictitious A.I. system in Terminator – is far more terrifying than Skynet as that its’ purpose is to incarnate in humans creating legions of human bots that are possessed through the use of nano-tech.
It is a possible future where humans emulate dangerous A.I.
How can this happen?
We can take heed to the precautionary tale given to us from the latest Terminator film.
During the Reverse Speech show with David Oates, we established that the mind is conditioned with metaphors and it looks for patterns in order to establish certain expectations and outcomes. These expectations and outcomes are what mold and shape our future actions. When patterns seem to be normal we feel secure in our decisions but throw a glitch into the matrix and things get weird and scary.
This triggers insecurity because we feel as though we have lost control of our world.
When our technology glitches in a big way, we also start to feel a little insecure and frustrated because our cognitive tool we use for controlling our lives or the extension of our soul is faulty and so when data is lost, phone numbers and contacts vanish we feel helpless.
It is like something inside of us has died.
This shows that our dependence is already programming us for the assimilation process.
For example, we reported that we are in what is called Mercury Retrograde. Astrologers say that this time when communication breaks down, airplanes don’t run on time and our cell phones glitch.
Stories have run in the news recently about glitches in the software of the Boeing 787 Max. You may remember that the plane has been grounded because of a possible software problem that was responsible for the crash of an Ethiopian plane killing everyone on board. There was also a crash in Indonesia.
Boeing believes that perhaps the planes will be ready to take off again in the fourth quarter, saying that all of the glitches should be remedied.
However, a whistleblower came forward and has said that the Boeing planes also have a problem with oxygen as it may not work if the cabin decompresses.
Meanwhile, a multitude of people received text messages that appear to have originally been sent on or around Valentine’s Day 2019. These people never received the text messages in the first place; the people who sent the messages had no idea that they had never been received, and they did nothing to attempt to resend them overnight.
Delayed messages were sent from and received by both iPhones and Android phones, and the messages seem to have been sent and received across all major carriers in the US. Many of the complaints involve T-Mobile or Sprint, although AT&T and Verizon have been mentioned as well. People using regional US carriers, carriers in Canada and even Google Voice also seem to have experienced delays.
T-Mobile blamed the issue on a “third-party vendor.” It didn’t clarify what company that was or what service they provided. “We’re aware of this and it is resolved,” a T-Mobile spokesperson said.
A company named Syniverse, which provides networking services, later took the blame for the messages being delayed. Syniverse said a single server was at fault: that server failed on February 14th, trapping messages waiting to be sent out; the server was only brought back online on November 7th. When that happened, all of the messages were finally delivered.
Syniverse initially published a note saying that 168,149 delayed messages were sent. A spokesperson later told The Verge that the company is “still assessing the scope and volume of messages impacted by this server disruption.”
Dozens and dozens of people have posted about receiving messages overnight. Most expressed confusion or spoke to the awkwardness of the situation, having been told by friends that they sent a mysterious early-morning text message.
A few spoke to much more distressing repercussions of this error: one person said they received a message from an ex-boyfriend who had died; another received messages from a best friend who is now dead.
Another woman said she received an old message from her sister saying that their mom was upbeat and doing well. She knew the message must have been sent before their mother died in June, but she said it was still shocking to receive.
The timing of this activity is on the heels of an announcement about an A.I. program that is considered dangerous because it can manipulate text to fool people into believing they are getting messages from real people when in reality, the messages are written by A.I.
Researchers had feared that the model, known as “GPT-2”, was so powerful that it could be maliciously misused by everyone from politicians to scammers.
GPT-2 was created for a simple purpose: it can be fed a piece of text, and is able to predict the words that will come next. By doing so, it is able to create long strings of writing that are largely indistinguishable from those written by a human being.
But it became clear that it was worryingly good at that job, with its text creation so powerful that it could be used to scam people and may undermine trust in the things we read.
What’s more, the model can be abused by extremist groups to create “synthetic propaganda” that would allow them to automatically generate long text promoting radical and dangerous things.
The company, Open A.I., reports that what they have released is a small model for experimentation.
The full version is more convincing than the smaller one, but only “marginally”. The relatively limited increase in credibility was part of what encouraged the researchers to make it available, they said.
It hopes that the release can partly help the public understand how such a tool could be misused, and help inform discussions among experts about how that danger can be mitigated.
In February, researchers said that there was a variety of ways that malicious people could misuse the program. The outputted text could be used to create misleading news articles, impersonate other people, and automatically create abusive or fake content for social media or to use to spam people with – along with a variety of possible uses that might not even have been imagined yet, they noted.
Such misuses would require the public to become more critical about the text they read online, which could have been generated by Artificial Intelligence.
What is being overlooked is that we are teaching A.I. how to create a synthetic version of automatic writing that is usually associated with ghosts and Ouija boards.
They are literally reaching out to synthetic ghosts.
Now think about this and connect it with the fictitious Terminator network called Legion.
Legion, are the demons of the Gadarenes. Legion is the name given in two of three New Testament accounts of the exorcism connected with the Gadarene swine and the Gerasene Demoniac.
The idea is that a network like Legion can be created and where many can be connected to it and that it goes beyond the scope of the Internet of Things. It literally will use nanotech to actually activate within many human beings creating a hive collective organic network.
In a new study, technology replaces language as a means of communicating by directly linking the activity of human brains. Electrical activity from the brains of a pair of human subjects was transmitted to the brain of a third individual in the form of magnetic signals, which conveyed an instruction to perform a task in a particular manner. This study opens the door to extraordinary new means of human collaboration while, at the same time, blurring fundamental notions about individual identity and autonomy in disconcerting ways.
Direct brain-to-brain communication has been a subject of intense interest for many years, driven by motives as diverse as futurist enthusiasm and military exigency.
In his book, Beyond Boundaries, one of the leaders in the field, Miguel Nicolelis, described the merging of human brain activity as the future of humanity, the next stage in our species’ evolution. (Nicolelis serves on Scientific American’s board of advisers.) He has already conducted a study in which he linked together with the brains of several rats using complex implanted electrodes known as brain-to-brain interfaces.
Nicolelis and his co-authors described this achievement as the first “organic computer” with living brains tethered together as if they were so many microprocessors. The animals in this network learned to synchronize the electrical activity of their nerve cells to the same extent as those in a single brain. The networked brains were tested for things such as their ability to discriminate between two different patterns of electrical stimuli, and they routinely outperformed individual animals.
If networked rat brains are “smarter” than a single animal, imagine the capabilities of a biological supercomputer of networked human brains.
Imagine Artificial Intelligence incarnating through a system that not only shows organic singularity but opens the channels for a network of organic minds that are under the possession of a central master control.
This would be very much like the Legion of the Bible but instead of demons, we have technological souls coming together with a common purpose in organic forms with a purpose to assimilate others into the group.
The argument is that perhaps there is not enough power to do this task and that with all of the neuro-firings involved there is no possible way that Artificial intelligence could do this.
Well, maybe not at this point but a lot sooner than we think.
The world has barely started using 5G, the latest generation of wireless connectivity, but China is already looking ahead to 6G.
China’s science and technology ministry announced that it has formed two teams to oversee the research and study of 6G, marking the official start of a state-backed effort to accelerate the development of the technology in order to facilitate this dream of man possessed by the machine.
One team consists of government departments who will be in charge of pushing through the execution of 6G technology, while the other consists of 37 experts from universities, science institutions and corporations, who will provide technical advice for the government’s major decisions on 6G.
5G and 6G refer to the fifth and sixth generation of mobile wireless networks. While 5G is known to have data transmission speeds at least 10 times greater than 4G, rolled out in 2009, it’s too early to say what 6G could be, or what sorts of technologies it would advance.
After all, we hardly know what life with 5G is going to be like yet. Chinese telecom carriers rolled out their commercial 5G plans only this month, with the cheapest option costing just under $20. China has also planned to activate over 130,000 5G base stations by the end of the year, helping it to build one of the largest 5G networks globally, an achievement the government prioritized (member exclusive). South Korea launched the service in April, and has also been at the forefront of developing 5G. The US, meanwhile, is playing catch up.
While users, mainly gamers, may notice faster speeds in the initial phase, it could take a decade to see the more dramatic changes businesses are hoping for, far beyond what happens on personal mobile devices.
Nor have crucial geopolitical battles around 5G been resolved yet, such as how big a role China’s Huawei, the world’s largest telecom equipment maker, will play in advancing the technology globally. Huawei is a major supplier of 5G base stations worldwide, with contracts with a number of countries to help them roll out their networks despite efforts by the US to warn against using its technology.
We need to realize that 5G and 6G are being implemented to improve machines — no one knows what it will do the health of humans.
5G and 6G are for machines and not humans.
There are also those who worry that the reason why China seeks 6G is that not only does it want to integrate technology into smart grid cities, they want to integrate the human interface and also create the technical handshake between high tech appliances and weapons used in warfare.
Emerging bio, nano, and cyber-technologies are becoming more and more accessible and it is proposed that many of us are wearing it, many others have ingested it, and so we may all be possessed by it.
This means that if a system like Legion exists, then no one on the Earth would be safe because everyone could become a potential time bomb.
That’s completely and horrifyingly, unprecedented.
You could be the terrorist of tomorrow and not even know it.
The trouble is that if anyone anywhere can attack anyone anywhere else, then states will become and are becoming unable to satisfy their primary duty as referee. It’s a trend toward anarchy; it would be the war of all against all, controlled by the machines.
Perhaps a completely new idea will emerge that can preserve the current system if we even want it preserved. Or perhaps emerging technologies won’t empower people as much as what is being proposed with the Terminator movie’s network – Legion.
One would hope that we are aware that things need to change away from the patterns we’ve been collectively engaged in.
But of course, the lack of optimism in science fiction may persuade us to shut down the idea of what has been shown us in prophetic sci-fi dreams.
After all, the story of Bladerunner took place in November of 2019 and so now come December of this year the film will be of a possible past that never quite happened.
In the movie, much of the dirty work and fighting is done by synthetic humans, each given a four-year lifespan.
When Philip K. Dick wrote the book in the 1960s he was more concerned about robots that look like humans could be programmed to be sociopaths.
The replicants lack empathy they are detached from humanity but yearn to be more like humans.
Philip K. Dick was trying to illustrate what it means to be human.
As we well know, there are no replicant robots to be had in this month and year but perhaps in the not too distant future, the nanotech could make every one of us potential Bladerunners.
When we can look back in time maybe we can reminisce about what it was like to be human.