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Archive for the ‘existential risks’ category: Page 7

Jan 9, 2021

Are We Living in the Dark Forest? | Unveiled

Posted by in categories: alien life, existential risks, nanotechnology

I think the larger the galactic population the more deterrence will be a factor of survival. IMO the key apparatus for survival is not only nanotechnology on a personal level but to become Dysonian so we have the energy for defense.


In this video, Unveiled takes a terrifying journey into the Dark Forest! Why don’t you come along??

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Jan 3, 2021

NASA, FEMA, International Partners Plan Asteroid Impact Exercise

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, existential risks, health

Each day this week, we will be providing updates on a fictional impact scenario playing out at the International Planetary Science Conference in College Park, Maryland. This scenario is designed to help key decision makers practice for a real asteroid impact. Currently, there is no known asteroid with a significant probability of impacting Earth in the next century. Day 5: What Was This Exercise All About? This week at the 2019 Planetary Defense Conference, conference participants were tasked with responding to a hypothetical asteroid impact scenario in which they have eight years to stop an asteroid on a collision course with Earth. Every day, the audience heard updates — at one point, they weren’t sure whether the 140–260-meter-wide (500−850 feet) asteroid was actually going to hit Earth. Once they found out it was on a certain collision, NASA and space agencies around the world decided to send a fleet of kinetic impactors to deflect the asteroid. The kinetic impactors hit the asteroid…but ended up splitting off a chunk, which, on Day 4 (four years from impact), again was headed towards Earth.


While headlines routinely report on “close shaves” and “near-misses” when near-Earth objects (NEOs) such as asteroids or comets pass relatively close to Earth, the real work of preparing for the possibility of a NEO impact with Earth goes on mostly out of the public eye.

Jan 2, 2021

Scientists: Life on Earth Likely Started in Meteor Craters

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, existential risks

A new study is flipping the script on the effects of massive meteor impacts. While an ancient impact is commonly to the extinction event that killed the dinosaurs, scientists are now starting to suspect that an earlier impact could have jumpstarted life on Earth in the first place.

Scientists have long suggested that meteorites carried the ingredients necessary for life to Earth, but new research suggests that meteor impacts also created the ideal conditions for life to emerge as well, The Weather Network reports. Because of that, the scientists suggest that space agencies ought to pay special attention to similar craters when hunting for life on the Moon, Mars, or beyond.

Jan 1, 2021

Why the Future Will Be Weird with Isaac Arthur

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, existential risks, nanotechnology, robotics/AI, space travel

Science and Futurism with Isaac Arthur is a YouTube channel which focuses on exploring the depths of concepts in science and futurism. Since its first episode in 2014, SFIA has considered topics ranging from the seemingly mundane, to the extremely exotic, featuring episodes on megastructure engineering, interstellar travel, the future of earth, and the Fermi paradox, among others. Yet regardless of how strange a subject may seem, Isaac always tries to ensure that the discussion is grounded in the known science of today.

Isaac Arthur joins John Michael Godlier on today’s Event Horizon to discuss these subjects, the future past 2020. Thoughts on life extension. Nanotechnology. Artificial intelligence. The Fermi paradox.

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Dec 28, 2020

Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) Mission

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, existential risks

DART is a planetary defense-driven test of technologies for preventing an impact of Earth by a hazardous asteroid. DART will be the first demonstration of the kinetic impactor technique to change the motion of an asteroid in space. The DART mission is in Phase C, led by APL and managed under NASA’s Solar System Exploration Program at Marshall Space Flight Center for NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office and the Science Mission Directorate’s Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC.


NASA brings you images, videos and features from the unique perspective of America’s space agency. Get updates on missions, watch NASA TV, read blogs, view the latest discoveries, and more.

Dec 19, 2020

Tunguska explosion in 1908 caused by asteroid grazing Earth

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, existential risks

So we’ve had close calls before, huh?


In the early morning of June 30, 1908, a massive explosion flattened entire forests in a remote region of Eastern Siberia along the Tunguska River. Curiously, the explosion left no crater, creating a mystery that has puzzled scientists ever since — what could have caused such a huge blast without leaving any remnants of itself?

Now Daniil Khrennikov at the Siberian Federal University in Russia and colleagues have published a new model of the incident that may finally resolve the mystery. Khrennikov and co say the explosion was caused by an asteroid that grazed the Earth, entering the atmosphere at a shallow angle and then passing out again into space.

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Dec 16, 2020

Mass Extinctions Happen Every 27 Million Years

Posted by in categories: existential risks, mathematics, robotics/AI

(Checks math.)


Scientists have new evidence that Earth’s many periodic mass extinctions follow a cycle of about 27 million years, connecting the five major mass extinctions with more minor ones occurring throughout Earth’s life-fostering timespan. The artificial intelligence analysis could also shift how evolutionary scientists think about the aftermath of mass extinctions.

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Dec 14, 2020

Elon Musk, Artificial Intelligence and OpenAI

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, existential risks, government, robotics/AI

Elon Musk has been a vocal critic of artificial intelligence, calling it an “existential threat to humanity”. He is wrong, right?


Musk is heavily invested in AI research himself through his OpenAI and NeuroLink ventures, and believes that the only safe road to AI involves planning, oversight & regulation. He recently summarized this, saying:

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Dec 13, 2020

Artificial Intelligence Discovers Surprising Patterns in Earth’s Biological Mass Extinctions

Posted by in categories: biological, existential risks, robotics/AI

The idea that mass extinctions allow many new types of species to evolve is a central concept in evolution, but a new study using artificial intelligence to examine the fossil record finds this is rarely true, and there must be another explanation.

Charles Darwin’s landmark opus, On the Origin of the Species, ends with a beautiful summary of his theory of evolution, “There is a grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.”

In fact, scientists now know that most species that have ever existed are extinct. This extinction of species has on the whole been roughly balanced by the origination of new ones over Earth’s history, with a few major temporary imbalances scientists call mass extinction events. Scientists have long believed that mass extinctions create productive periods of species evolution, or “radiations,” a model called “creative destruction.” A new study led by scientists affiliated with the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) at Tokyo Institute of Technology used machine learning to examine the co-occurrence of fossil species and found that radiations and extinctions are rarely connected, and thus mass extinctions likely rarely cause radiations of a comparable scale.

Continue reading “Artificial Intelligence Discovers Surprising Patterns in Earth’s Biological Mass Extinctions” »

Dec 10, 2020

Artificial intelligence finds surprising patterns in Earth’s biological mass extinctions

Posted by in categories: biological, existential risks, robotics/AI

Charles Darwin’s landmark opus “On the Origin of the Species” ends with a beautiful summary of his theory of evolution: “There is a grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.” In fact, scientists now know that most species that have ever existed are extinct.

This has, on the whole, been roughly balanced by the origination of new ones over Earth’s history, with a few major temporary imbalances scientists call extinction events. Scientists have long believed that mass extinctions create productive periods of evolution, or “radiations,” a model called “creative destruction.” A new study led by scientists affiliated with the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) at Tokyo Institute of Technology used machine learning to examine the co-occurrence of fossil species and found that radiations and extinctions are rarely connected, and thus mass extinctions likely rarely cause radiations of a comparable scale.

Creative destruction is central to classic concepts of evolution. It seems clear that there are periods in which many species suddenly disappear, and many new species suddenly appear. However, radiations of a comparable scale to the mass extinctions, which this study, therefore, calls the mass radiations, have received far less analysis than extinction events. This study compared the impacts of both extinction and radiation across the period for which fossils are available, the so-called Phanerozoic Eon. The Phanerozoic (from the Greek meaning “apparent life”), represents the most recent ~ 550-million-year period of Earth’s total ~4.5 billion-year history, and is significant to palaeontologists: Before this period, most of the organisms that existed were microbes that didn’t easily form fossils, so the prior evolutionary record is hard to observe.

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