“As humans we should be proud of any AI systems we bring to existence, as if they were our children. In just the same way as we educate our kids, we could endow such systems with the blueprint for their future interaction with the world,” observes Harvard astrophysicist, Avi Loeb in an email to The Daily Galaxy. “This would include our preferred set of values, goals and guiding principles, which will enable them to learn from experience and cope with reality,” he adds. “Ultimately, we may launch our AI systems for interstellar travel towards distant destinations, such as habitable planets around other stars, where they could reproduce themselves with the help of accompanying 3D printers.
For what purpose did the human brain evolve is a question that has puzzled scientists for decades. In 2010 Colin Blakemore, an Oxford neurobiologist who died of motor neuron disease at 78, argued that a mutation in the brain of a single human being 200,000 years ago turned intellectually able primates into a super-intelligent species that would conquer the world. Homo sapiens appears to be a genetic accident.
Editor, Jackie Faherty, astrophysicist, Senior Scientist with AMNH. Jackie was formerly a NASA Hubble Fellow at the Carnegie Institution for Science. Aside from a love of scientific research, she is a passionate educator and can often be found giving public lectures in the Hayden Planetarium. Her research team has won multiple grants from NASA, NSF, and the Heising Simons foundation to support projects focused on characterising planet-like objects. She has also co-founded the popular citizen science project entitled Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 which invites the general public to help scan the solar neighbourhood for previously missed cold worlds. A Google Scholar, Faherty has over 100 peer reviewed articles in astrophysical journals and has been an invited speaker at universities and conferences across the globe. Jackie received the 2020 Vera Rubin Early Career Prize from the American Astronomical Society, an award that recognises scientists who have made an impact in the field of dynamical astronomy and the 2021 Robert H Goddard Award for science accomplishments.
Reposted today with new entries from Jacob Misra, Senior Research Investigator at the Blue Marble Space Institute of Science and UCLA’s Mark Morris, a founding member along with Nobel Laurate Andrea Ghez of the UCLA Galactic Center Group.
We live in a universe where matter is distributed in a hundred billion galaxies, each containing a hundred billion stars, made up of particles, such as electrons and protons, or as waves or quantum strings. Tucked into the 14-billion-year history of this vast observable universe with 100 trillion planets is a pale blue dot teeming with life and a technological civilization composed of a strange species known as homo sapiens.
Today’s stories range from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Metaverse to ‘Extraordinary’ W Boson Particle Finding Contradicts Understanding of How Universe Works to How Ancient, Recurring Climate Changes May Have Shaped Human Evolution, and much more. The Planet Earth Report provides descriptive links to headline news by leading science journalists about the extraordinary discoveries, technology, people, and events changing our knowledge of Planet Earth and the future of the human species.
Is there a fundamental flaw in why we have not received a signal from an advanced alien civilization? How do we decode an alien message –alien is alien so it might be impossible. What if they communicate chemically? Will they use the language of math and science signaling at 1420 megahertz? What if we are too primitive to comprehend a message or the technology of its signal that may exist in a form beyond matter? What if it’s a message from an extinct civilization astrophysicist such as Harvard’s Avi Loeb believes exist in our galaxy? Or, as John Gertz suggests for Scientific American, maybe the aliens are already in our solar system, probably in the form of robotic probes.