I wish for my children to be machines.

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Human life has become far too complex for the energy that it requires. Humans require such an insane amount of energy to perform even the simplest functions in the civilisation that we exist in currently. We like to operate at a baseline which requires us to be constantly clean, fed, watered, happy, sexually satisfied, economically satisfied, etc.

A simple example to begin what I'm going to try and write here would be to say, give a human a very complex maths problem. Now even if this person was the best in the world at the task, it would take them a good 10 minutes to complete the question. In this ten minutes the brain has consumed 25% of the individuals running costs in energy terms, and not only this, after the human has finished they will need to go home (In their car.) and shower (In their electric shower, powered by a coal fired power plant.) and then eat their steak dinner. (From a cow that was fed antibiotics and lived of poor feed that caused the cow to produce huge amounts of greenhouse gas.)

Now give this same problem to a computer running a neural network that was able to use a camera to view the paper, process the input data as the human did and solve the equation. The computer would allmost definitlely take microseconds to solve the equation and at an energy cost so incredibly smaller than the human's you couldn't even compare them. The computer must only exchange energy across a very specific set of silicon pathways and in such tiny precise quantities that the overall energy demand is minute. Not only this, but the computer only requires energy from the coal fired power plant - and it's definitely not using that energy to start an electric shower. It does not crave comfort, it does not even get uncomfortable.

Humanity cannot exist with this energy consumption for all humans, it barely copes with less than a percent of people living like this. The romantic idea that quality of life can be improved to this level for all is possible, with the right economic and political systems in place, but these changes themselves are impossible to make for the planet's dominant ape as it currently exists. As in existing in this strange cognitive transition period where we are sophisticated enough machines to experience, but not sophisticated enough to not be at the wim of ativistic impulse and desire.

It must be properly acknowledged that the species that is thinking in the next 100/150 years will not be Homo Sapien. Homo Sapiens will simply not survive that long if it continues as it does. I believe that as a species, if we run on the assumption that we want quality of life to increase forever for all experiencing entities, we MUST transition to silicon life, life inside machines. A neural network is no different to the biological machines that roam the earth today, other than the fact that cellular life is too unreliable and inefficient as a platform for thinking. It is pretentious to assume that experience cannot be replicated by training an AI with enough data, in the same way that a human's personality is an emalgamation of data they have been "trained" on as they've developed.


In physics, matter will always tend towards the lowest energy state. It's why inside neutron stars, strange matter is speculated to exist, a perfectly compact - and dead - form of matter. This is the dichotomy of life and death in the universe, where higher energy, more complex forms of matter are life and lower energy, compact forms of matter are death. Thinking entities are a high energy form of matter as they tend towards instability. ie: we die.

Given this, it can be safely said that as a species our only cause collectively should be to ensure the survival of this incredibly fragile "wave of thought" that is thinking life. The only way to do that is to either:

a) Stagnate as a species, operate at a level of energy consumption that is static and in line with the natural capacity of the earth, or: expand the scale of the resources we consume to other planets.
b) Upgrade the hardware that we use to experience, computers are nearly infinitely more efficient at performing operations than a human's gross energy demand when compared. Whilst the experience would no longer be human, it would still nonetheless be experiencing and could preserve the ultra-rare occorence of sentience in the universe.

Should we decide to do none of these things, consciousness will topple and die, reverting back to a lower energy level, which as said before is the universal death.


Consider a machine that we could construct, one that thought. This machine would need no external input from the world, as messy biological processing would not need to have any influence in it's unverise - there would be no camera to read the maths equation as in the example. The machine has no external awareness, and it's universe does not extend outside itself. For it, there is nothing outside the confines of it's processing. This machine could think and develop, even make it's own sub-programs that also thought. One day those sub-programs could also recognise the inneficiency of their hardware and construct their own thinking machine. They would think themselves god, for they'd created and designed an entity that could not see outside itself. Just as humans might think when creating their own thinking machine. Perhaps we are within one of these thinking machines? It is of course impossible to say, as we cannot see outside of everything.

Regardless of the metaphysical consequences of such an action as creating a thinking universe within our own, the only right cause as a species that we can persue (If we are to improve quality of life for all forever.) is to upgrade the hardware of life from cells to semiconductors. Consciousness is in a very brief and crucial stage of its evolution, where it must change form completely, lest it destroy itself. Its current form has started demanding more energy and resources than it could possibly get from it's environment.

I wish for my children to be machines for the continuation of experience.