Beneficial Outcomes for Humanity in the Smart Technology Era
In this eighth article in the Democratizing AI series the focus shifts to discussing the beneficial outcomes for humanity and how we can democratize AI to help shape a beneficial human-centric future. In the previous articles which share extracts from the book Democratizing Artificial Intelligence to Benefit Everyone: Shaping a Better Future in the Smart Technology Era, a foundation has been laid of sense-making and better understanding of AI, its applications, its benefits, its risks, its limitations, its progress, and its likely future paths in the Smart Technology Era. In this article which shares some text and audio extracts from Chapter 10, “Beneficial Outcomes for Humanity in the Smart Technology Era” in the book, we specifically examine what it means to be human and living meaningful in the 21st century, but also get a better understanding of the problematic trajectory that our current civilization is on. I also share some ideas for reshaping our civilization for beneficial outcomes as well as various potential outcomes for the future of civilization. This article is then concluded by zooming in on the beneficial outcomes for humanity and introducing a proposed massive transformative purpose for humanity and its associated smart goals that complement the United Nations’ 2030 vision and sustainable development goals.
The following topics will also be discussed on 28 April 2022 at BiCstreet‘s “AI World Series” Live event (see more details at the bottom of the article):
- 36. What does it Mean to be Human and Living Meaningful in the 21st Century?
- 37. Problematic Trajectory of Our Current Civilization in the Smart Technology Era
- 38. Analyzing more Issues and Ideas for Reshaping our Civilization for Beneficial Outcomes
- 39. Various Potential Outcomes for the Future of Civilization
- 40. Beneficial Outcomes, Massive Transformative Purpose, and Smart Goals
- MTP for Humanity and its associated Goals
(Previous articles in this series cover The Debates, Progress and Likely Future Paths of Artificial Intelligence, AI’s Impact on Society, Governments, and the Public Sector, Ultra-personalized AI-enabled Education, Precision Healthcare, and Wellness, “AI Revolutionizing Personalized Engagement for Consumer Facing Businesses“, “AI-powered Process and Equipment Enhancement across the Industrial World“, “AI-driven Digital Transformation of the Business Enterprise” as well as “AI as Key Exponential Technology in the Smart Technology Era” as further background.)
36. What does it Mean to be Human and Living Meaningful in the 21st Century?
To help think about beneficial outcomes for humanity and meaningful living in the 21st century and beyond, it is useful to frame and give context to the discussion by referencing Maslow’s hierarchy of needs which is a motivational theory in psychology that consists of basic needs such as physiological needs (e.g., air, food, water, warmth, shelter, sex, sleep and rest) and safety needs (e.g., security, stability and safety); psychological needs such as belongingness and love needs (e.g., intimate relationships, friends, and work) and esteem needs (e.g., prestige, achievement, mastery and feeling of accomplishment); and self-fulfillment needs such as self-actualization (e.g., achieving one’s full potential, including creative activities).[i] Basic needs typically needs to be met before psychological and self-fulfillment needs. This 5-stage motivational model has since been extended to an 8-stage hierarchical model which adds cognitive needs (e.g., knowledge and understanding, need for meaning and predictability, exploration, and curiosity) and aesthetic needs (e.g., appreciation and search for beauty, form, and balance) in between esteem and self-actualization needs and then adds an additional layer on top for transcendence needs (e.g., values beyond the personal self that includes experiences that relates to nature, mystics, aesthetics as well as service to others, religious faith, and the pursuit of science).[ii]
During the same decade that Abraham Maslow proposed his theory of human motivation in the 1940s, Victor Frankl published his book Man’s Search For Meaning: An Introduction to Logotherapy which has proven to be a very influential book for people exploring the meaning of life.[iii] Viktor, who was a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp during World War II, recorded his experiences and explained his psychotherapeutic method that helped him survive the concentration camp through identifying a positive purpose in life and then immersively visualizing that outcome. He conjectured that a prisoner’s longevity was directly affected by how the future was imagined. His theory of logotherapy (“logos” is the Greek word which indicates meaning) discusses the meaning of human existence and man’s search for that meaning. Victor sees meaning in one’s life as a primary motivational force and something unique and specific to oneself. He sees an inherent tension in a human being between what a person has already accomplished and what one still aspires to achieve. Victor does not see life as a search for pleasure, but a search for meaning and identifies three sources for meaning which includes caring for another person (love), doing something significant (work), and bravery and determination during hard times (courage). He states that love is the utmost and supreme goal to which anyone can strive for. We all know that we cannot control what happens to us in our lives, but we can control what we feel and do about what happens to us. This in some sense also ties in with the first part of the Serenity Prayer that says, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.”[iv] The key freedom that each one of us will always have is to choose our attitude and the way we respond in any specific situation and moment. Victor Frankl sees that having the responsibility in answering for your own life as the essence of human existence and advises to “live as if you were living already for the second time and as if you had acted the first time as wrongly as you are about to act now!”[v] He notes that as soon as suffering finds a meaning of a sacrifice, it stops being suffering. Also, one cannot be happy without a reason to be happy. If someone’s meaning has been identified, it not only helps one to be happy, but also assists with dealing with suffering and hardship.
A recent book The Meaning of Life and the Great Philosophers authored by some leading experts in the field, reveals how thirty five of the greatest past philosophers have tried to answer the question of the meaning of life.[vi] It consolidates some of the history of philosophy’s wealth of opinion on this subject by major philosophical figures such as Confucius, The Buddha, Socrates, Plato, Zhuangzi, Aristotle, Epicurus, Epictetus, Aquinas, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Marx, Nietzsche, Ortega, Wittgenstein, Heidegger, Sartre, Camus, and Rorty. The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy is also an excellent peer-reviewed academic resource that provides a deep dive into a much larger pool of philosophical material that also covers aspects of the meaning of life.[vii] As the philosophical school of the 20th century in the United States and Great Britain was more focused on hard-core scientific rationalism and the nature of logic, concepts and language, the philosophical question of the meaning of life that science is not well-equipped to answer was for the most part avoided. Kieran Setiya, a professor in philosophy at MIT and author of Midlife: Philosophical Guide, remarked in an article that philosophers should be keener to talk about the meaning of life.[viii] By examining all philosophies on the meaning of life, it looks like they can be classified into one of the four groups: Supernatural meaning, objective meaning, subjective meaning, and life has no meaning. Furthermore, the philosophies of the West and East also seem to follow a pattern where people from the West emphasize the individual, whereas people from the East think more in terms of us, the community, or society.
The earliest prehistoric schools of philosophy that also address the meaning of life includes Natural Pantheism that states that God is in everything and the meaning of life is in living in harmony with nature and all that there is, whilst Theism proposes that God exists and that the meaning of life is to follow God’s will. From approximately the 6th and 5th century BC, Determinism appeared which accept that everything happens as a result of previously existing causes and is predetermined including the meaning of life which implies that we do not have free will, whereas Daoism of Chinese origin offers a person a pain-free way of following the way and finding the meaning of life without the person knowing what it is until it is revealed when a person simply is.[ix] During the same time frame, Confucianism by Chinese philosopher Confucius teaches us to take care and fulfill our duties to others, Mohism by Chinese philosopher Mozi advocates to love and take care of people impartially, and Solipsism by Greek philosopher Gorgias expresses that as one can only be certain of the existence of one’s mind, the meaning of life can only be known by one’s mind and not by one’s relation to other people.[x] Around the 4th century BC, Cynicism was introduced to provide people the possibility of happiness and freedom from suffering and see the meaning of life as having mental clarity and being self-sufficient and free from external influences, whereas Hedonism presents people with a life of pursuing pleasure and avoiding suffering. Platonism was introduced in the 4th century BC by Greek philosopher Plato who regarded the meaning of life as the pursuit of knowledge of abstractions. Plato references his teacher Socrates who said that “the unexamined life is not worth living” and makes the claims that we are all born with the knowledge inside us that just needs to be discovered.[xi] Legalism also emerged from China around the same time and declares that the meaning of life is to obtain practical skills that can be used by the state for society’s benefit as people are selfish and cannot be trusted to behave in a moral fashion. Epicureanism was during the same period introduced by the Greek philosopher Epicurus who stated the meaning of life to be to achieve lasting mental pleasure which leads to a state of calmness and freedom from fear.[xii] Around the 3rd century BC, Quietism was presented as the philosophy that has no answers to offer and regards the question of the meaning of life as meaningless, whereas Aristotelianism introduced by the Greek philosopher Aristotle regards it sufficient to be a good person as virtue is the goal and we already know what is good.[xiii] Stoicism also appeared at the same time and wants people to renounce emotion and be free from desire for pleasure or fear of pain through wisdom and rational actions. A few centuries later Marcus Aurelius recorded his progress on transforming himself in becoming such a wise stoic person.[xiv]
During the late 1300s Modern Humanism specified that the meaning of life is to promote and support other humans as we should act in self-interest and the common good and take responsibility for humanity’s destiny. This philosophy was followed by Subjectivism in the early 1600s that set out that the meaning of life is different for each person and depends on one’s mental state and achieving personalized goals. This philosophy is ascribed to Rene Descartes and his thought experiment “I think, therefore, I exist.”[xv] Liberalism introduced by English philosopher John Locke appeared in 1689 and states that the meaning of life is to defend individual liberties as a person should be free to make their own choices without the consent of others.[xvi] The origin of Kantianism is German philosopher Emmanuel Kant which in 1785 proposed that every human action should be judged according to a universal principle that relates their duty toward humans.[xvii] According to this philosophy the meaning of life is to do as you would others do to follow universal principles. Nihilism or Pessimism which appeared in 1862 is the belief that as there seems to be an inherent human tendency that prevents us from finding meaning in life, nothing can make life really meaningful for us. The German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche who has been most associated with this philosophy introduced the concept “Will to Power” and claimed that people should develop their own identity through self-realization without relying on anything transcending their lives.[xviii] Pragmatism as a philosophy arrived in the 1870s and is more focused on pursuing a useful understanding of life as opposed to the truth of life. The American philosopher and psychologist William James reasoned that truth could be made but not sought and the meaning of life depends on what you do with your life and maximize value to humanity.[xix] In the 1920s the philosophy of Logical Positivism or logical empiricism indicates that the meaning of life can only be derived from a person’s actual experience and what you give it as the only type of knowledge available to us is scientifically verifiable and observable facts and anything else is meaningless. In the 1940s the Existentialism philosophy describes that to find meaning in life a person needs to make choices about their own values and then take positive action to live according to them. German philosopher Martin Heidegger initially introduced this philosophythrough his exploration of the “meaning of being”.[xx]In 1942 French philosopher Albert Camus proposed Absurdism that people should embrace the absurdity of our existence, stop trying to find meaning and just carry on with our lives.[xxi]
But what do every day thoughtful 21st century people think about the meaning of life and what it is to be human? Of the many internet resources on this topic, the Excellence Reporter website (claiming to be the #1 most ‘meaning full’ website on earth) provides over 1200 articles and interviews on ‘What is the Meaning of Life?’ written by renowned spiritual leaders, mindfulness experts, great thinkers and authors, elders, artists, musicians, CEOs, and many others.[xxii] In a personal blog, Daniel Schmachtenberger also highlights three components to living a meaningful life which includes a mode of being that involves appreciating the beauty of existence, a mode of doing which adds to the beauty of existence and a mode of becoming which increases your ability to appreciate and add to the beauty of existence.[xxiii] He sees that most of our actions come from one’s being which is strongly conditioned and influenced by past unconscious activities. Being then influences what a person is doing, whereas doing in turn conditions the person further. He reckons that doing affects how a person is changing and becoming, whereas becoming then changes the integrated state of a person’s being. Daniel explains further that “being, doing, and becoming are equally fundamental, inseparable, and inter affecting, in a ring. The cycle can be vicious or virtuous. Everything that is meaningful is one of these three. Engaging in all three consciously as a virtuous cycle leads to a maximally meaningful life. All three are ultimately inspired by love.”[xxiv]
Lex Fridman has this habit of asking people on his podcast about the meaning of life.[xxv] What follows next is the essence of a wide variety of meaningful responses to this question paraphrased which help to provide some further rich insights into how modern-day thoughtful people think about this. It is also interesting to see how they fit into Maslow’s 8-stage hierarchical motivation model as well as the schools of philosophies’ classification framework of supernatural, subjective, objective, and no meaning. Noam Chomsky, a renowned linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, historian, social critic, and political activist, believes that there is no general answer to the meaning of life and that we determine what the meaning is.[xxvi] He thinks that the significance of your life is something you create as the action determines the meaning in the sense of significance. Steven Pinker, a cognitive psychologist, linguist, and popular science author, thinks about the meaning of life as obtaining knowledge and fulfillment more generally with respect to life, health, stimulation, and access to the living cultural and social world.[xxvii] However, that is not the meaning of our genes which is to propagate copies of themselves. Although this is also a subset of our meaning, we also want to interact with people, we want to experience beauty, and experience the richness of the natural world. To understand what makes the universe tick is way up there for Steven. He sees the latter as fundamental, what we strive for and what makes us homo sapiens – wise man. We are unique amongst animals to the degree in which we acquire and use knowledge to survive. We make tools, we strike agreements via language, we extract poisons, we predict the behavior of animals, we get to know the workings of plants, the refinement of reason in pursuit of human wellbeing, health, happiness, social richness, cultural richness, and using our intellect and our knowledge of how the world works to make discoveries and strike agreements to make us all better off in the long run.[xxviii] David Chalmers, a philosopher and cognitive scientist specializing in philosophy of mind, philosophy of language, and consciousness, reckons that without consciousness there is no meaning.[xxix] He views consciousness as the source of meaning, but not the meaning itself. David believes that what is meaningful in life is what we find meaningful. If you find meaning and fulfillment in intellectual work like understanding that is a significant part of the meaning of life for you. Other things that provide significant meaning include our social connections and raising a family. As meaning comes from what you value as a conscious creature, he does not think there is a universal answer to this question.
In discussing neuroscience of optimal performance with Lex Fridman, Andrew Huberman who is a neuroscientist at Stanford University, claims that our sense of meaning is very elastic in time and space.[xxx] He also references Victor Frankl and his book the Man’s Search for Meaning and finds it amazing that someone locked in a cell or a concentration camp can bring in the horizon close enough so that they can micro-slice their environment in order to find rewards, meaning, power and beauty even in a little square box or a horrible situation. This speaks to one of the most important features of the human mind which he illustrates with two opposite extremes. Let us say the alarm goes off in the building and the building starts shaking. Our senses such as hearing and vision will be tuned to this space time bubble for those moments and the only meaning would be centered around things like getting out of the building safely, trying to find out what is going on, and contact loved ones. If we now consider the other extreme where we sit back completely relaxed and contemplate our place in the vast universe and see ourselves as one brief glimmer in all of time and all of space, it feels more meaningless and if we do not matter. It is beautiful that the human mind allows us to be so dynamic that we can pull meaning from the past, present and the future. For people such as Victor Frankl and Nelson Mandela it was not just about grinding it out but finding those dopamine rewards in their boxes that they were forced into. Andrew thinks that meaning is held for only as long as we are in that spacetime regime. What really gives meaning is that one can move between these different spacetime dimensionalities using different brain processing algorithms in a different state. Given this perspective, Andrew wants in his lifetime to engage into as many different levels of contractions and dilations of meaning as possible. He wants to go to the micro and the macro. As the journey up and down and back and forth that staircase is the key thing, he sees his goal as getting as many trips as possible up and down that staircase whilst he is still alive.
(For more on this, read the paperback or e-book, or listen to the audiobook or podcast – see jacquesludik.com)
37. Problematic Trajectory of Our Current Civilization in the Smart Technology Era
Of the many well informed and thoroughly researched perspectives about the state of our civilization and our current trajectory, I found the one presented by Daniel Schmachtenberger to be not only thoughtful and insightful, but one that we should pay attention to even though I do not agree with every aspect of this. Daniel’s core interest is focused on long term civilization design and more specifically to help us as a civilization to develop improved sensemaking and meaning-making capabilities so that we can make better quality decisions to help unlock more of our potential and higher values that we are capable of.[i] He has specifically done some work on surveying existential and catastrophic risks, advancing forecasting and mitigation strategies, synthesizing and advancing civilizational collapse and institutional decay models, as well as identifying generator functions that drive catastrophic risk scenarios and social architectures that lead to potential coordination failures. Generator functions include for example game theory related win-lose dynamics multiplied by exponential technology, damaged feedback loops, unreasonable or irrational incentives, and short term decision making incentives on issues with long term consequences.[ii] He believes that categorical solutions to these generator functions would address the causes for civilization collapse and function as the key ingredients for a new and robust civilization model that will be robust in a Smart Technology Era with destabilizing decentralized exponential technology. Daniel has shared his views on the Civilization Emerging website and many podcasts such as Rebel Wisdom, Modern Wisdom, The Portal, Future Thinkers, The Seeking, The Nantucket Project, Neurohacker, Tom Bilyeu, Foresight Institute, and Max Hug.[iii] In a podcast, titled The 2050 Life Purpose Podcast – Building a New Civilization, Daniel Schmachtenberger answers questions on his life purpose and his goals for the year 2050 which is in part paraphrased below.[iv] He summarizes his main sense of purpose is helping to transition civilization being on a current path that is self-terminating to one that is not and that is supportive of the possibility of purpose and meaning for everyone enduring into the future and working on changing the underlying structural dynamics that help make that possible. What he would like to see differently within the next 30 years is that we prevent existential risks that could play out in this time frame. It is not a given that we make it to 2050. Apart from catastrophic risks that can play out over this time period, there are those that can go past a tipping point during this time frame but will inevitably play out after that time. As we do not want to experience civilization collapse or existential risk and also not have us go past tipping points, Daniel would like to see a change in the trajectory that civilization is currently on from one that is on the path of many self-terminating scenarios each with their own set of chain reactions such as AI apocalypse, world war 3, climate change human-induced migration issues leading to resource wars, collapse of biodiversity, and killer drones. More broadly some of the key categories of risk can include human system failures such as economics, government, infrastructure, emergency services, and communications; violence such as war and terrorism; exponential technology risks such as those from AI, biotech and nanotech and exponential disinformation; ecology risks such as climate change, coral die off, ocean acidification, ocean dead zones, industrial and agricultural pollution, desertification, total biodiversity loss, overfishing, species extinction, keystone species loss, weather intensification, arctic methane, aquifer and freshwater depletion and toxicity, sea level rise, droughts, and ocean current changes; human health related risks such as mental health, toxicity, deficiency and fragility, and pandemics which could be natural, engineered or accidental byproducts of biotech; and planetary natural disasters or exoplanetary events.[v] The problem is that we have a civilization that is generating most of these scenarios at increasing speed and magnitude. As a civilization we need to switch off that path to one that is developing all of its technological capacity for omni-positive purposes in the world at large.
In a Future Thinkers podcast, Singularity or Extinction? Exponential Growth is Not Forever, Daniel explains further the problem that we are trying to fix.[vi] He reckons that the current systems, the interface of these systems with each other and the net effects are unsustainable which leads to a self-terminating scenario where these systems run to their own end and then fall off some kind of cliff. When we look at growth curves of different kinds of organisms, any time we see a growth curve that has an exponential up that is not forever. Sometimes the exponential up goes logistic (meaning a sigmoidal or S-curve) and that is typically good; sometimes it drops off pretty hard before it follows a logistic path; sometimes it goes through a lot of instability; and sometimes it just drops off a cliff. As an example, the world’s population was less than 500 million people for all of human history as far as we know until we got to the industrial revolution where after just 200 years, we went up to over 7 billion people and growing. That is an extreme exponential curve. Daniel makes the point that not only have we gone through this extreme exponential population curve in relation to our ability to extract resources from the planet that are not replenishing themselves (which is what the industrial revolution was) such as mining, farming, fishing, and logging, we are also taking resource reserves that took hundreds of millions or billions of years to develop and extract them at a radically fast pace – much faster than they can renew – and have a world population that is growing on that “savings account”. Real problems start when we hit the end of the savings account. Not only have we been growing in population, but we have been growing in resource consumption per capita within an economy that requires year over year growth. He argues that this kind of exponential growth economy which is attached to a linear materials economy just does not work ongoingly on a finite planet and will effectively lead to a self-terminating situation. He understands why we took this route in picking so much low hanging fruit in terms of coal, oil, fish, and trees to initially help drive our economy, but states that it is just not viable anymore.[vii] One counter argument for the limited resources of a finite planet can be that mining space would unlock tremendous resources (although it would likely have a dramatic impact on capitalism which amongst other things capitalizes on scarcity). There are also more sustainable ways of working with resources in a balanced way such as the development of subterranean aquaponic fish farms that if done correctly at scale could help to provide food to the planet’s people or harvesting bamboo or trees in a similar fashion.
In the podcast The 2050 Life Purpose Podcast – Building a New Civilization, Daniel Schmachtenberger desires to see a prototype of a new full-stack model of civilization that has in its design categorically solved the generator functions of all of the catastrophic and existential risks and is a civilization model that is moving into one of increasingly quality of life and is actually more adaptive than the current civilization, so it becomes a new gravitational basin for everything to flow. So, Daniel thinks that this specifically requires new economics, new governance, new law, new jurisprudence in philosophy as a basis of law, new judiciary, new medicine, new infrastructure, new technology development processes, and a new culture with a sense of what is meaningful and purposeful. All of this after affects each other. So, what is being suggested here by him is a full stack reboot from an axiom level. He argues that if we think about all of the existential risks that the generator functions have in common that is driving all of these risks, we see things like if we have a rivalrous or win-lose game or in-group out-group dynamics where they compete and they cannot both win, then harm definitely happens from that. So, the implication is that my win requires your loss, and we are seeking harm directly and we are both extracting more resources from the environment or externalizing more harm to the environment or indirectly doing that through the harm that happens through war. It is evident that we are harming each other and harming the commons. With exponential technology which means exponentially increased capacity to affect the world through our choices to the degree that we are making choices that are directly and/or indirectly harm causing, exponential harm-causing choices, self-terminate on a finite playing field. So, for thousands of years of civilization we have killed people who had different ideas than us and who had a reasonable way of dealing with problems. We also had unsustainable agriculture that deserted areas that were previously arable. This is not a new phenomenon as desertification is a thousands-of-years phenomenon and we have had extinct species for a long time. Daniel also thinks that the existential risks that humanity face now are not different in kind but are different in magnitude and speed and driven by exponential technology, which is technology that makes it easier to make better technology and computers that help make us better computers. It seems clear that exponential technology will not be put back in the bag and is going to happen. He argues that exponential technology multiplied by rivalrous game theory self-terminates. Therefore, we must create anti-rivalrous environments that make us safe stewards of the level of power that exponential technology brings, or the human experiment completes in a meta-poetic sense. He thinks that exponential technology is bringing us to have the power of gods and that we need the love, wisdom, and prudence of gods to guide the use of that power or irresponsible use of that power would end-up self-destructing. So, the question is what does this look like? The focus is to solve the rivalrous games generator function. Daniel argues that creating an anti-rivalrous environment is clearly changing the macro-economics of having a balance sheet that mirrors the scorecard of a finite rivalrous game and requires not having in-group and out-group like nations or religions or race identification in any deep kind of sense. These are significant changes and require not having things like democracy where we make a proposition that is ill-formed. If such a proposition goes through, it benefits something and harms something else, and if it does not go through then something is protected and something else is harmed. If it goes through it could for example lead to groups of people with specific needs clustering more around one side versus the other which now creates polarization and eventually radicalization which then needs to be stabilized in war. However, we cannot keep having wars because exponentially increasing military technology becomes unwinnable. So, creating an anti-rivalrous environment is complicated. Even though humanity has not done this before, we must do something because every civilization that we ever had so far has collapsed, but now we have a fully global civilization, where the collapse is actually catastrophic. When Rome fell, it was substantial, but it was not the whole world. The same holds for the Inca, Mesopotamia, Sumerians, and other civilizations. Now we have a fully globalized supply chain economy that is also connected to the biosphere in a deep way that its collapse is actually a catastrophic collapse. Given that these systems always fell for these reasons we must do something that the world has never done before. We also have increased capacities that the world never had before, and we must realize them and then also guide the other capacities that are coming on board. So, the reason he is saying all this is because creating an anti-rivalrous environment does not only prevent existential risk, it also changes the underlying rivalry basis of humanity’s whole history of fighting wars, torturing one another, damaging the environment, making philosophies with respect to the nature of duality, and creating a mix bag that humans are based on game theoretic dynamics. There is also a question about how the distribution of moral values have shifted over the centuries for humans and if it has been positive in all respects. Daniel feels that we can create a different environment that does not incentivize harm because as long as one person is incentivized to do something that is harmful to another person it cannot be prevented at scale. But we can actually change that underlying incentive and make it to where yours and mine are more tightly coupled and yours are mine and the commons are tightly coupled. In his mind, the outcome is not communism or socialism or anything that has ever been presented. It is something totally new and there are real paths to this. In the process of solving the generator function we are not only solving catastrophic risks, but also the bad human dynamics and bringing about a really radical different human being. Daniel also realizes that there will be a transitional path to such an idealized destination. For example, if we have an intentional community today that is trying to prototype some ideals, but they still need to get the computer that they have to buy from Apple which needs to get minerals that comes from conflict zones and rainforests over six continents and is made in factories where workers do not commit suicide about working and living conditions that is bad, then our village is still being supported by the tragedy of the whole rest of the thing. So according to him, we will not avoid the above type of scenario until we can get to an advanced technology closed loop civilization that does not require import and is actually more adaptive than the previous civilization. That happens at the scale of an advanced technology city-state which needs to be sovereign in law and the minimum kind of scale for self-organization that could actually produce all of our needs. So, in 2050, Daniel would like to see a fully operating city-state civilization model that is anti-rivalrous and has the right relationship between complicated and complex systems and all the other dynamics that we need. He would like to see it operating long enough and well enough that the rest of the world is already starting to move in the direction that it is setting an example of and that means also off the path of existential risk.[viii] Although I think there is a lot of merit in such a city-state civilization model as well as infinite games dynamics which is part of the solutions framework that the book also recommends, I am not convinced that we can or need to completely eliminate rivalrous dynamics on certain levels within society where it does not cause harm. I will elaborate later in this chapter.
Daniel expands further on this city-state civilization that he envisions by affirming that the generator functions with their many different expressions must be solved at that level otherwise we do not really move or change the future possibilities. We need to articulate that solutions at a generator function level are not only necessary for civilization making but also sufficient. We then need to develop architectures for viable solutions that entails an economic system, a governance system, and a legal system that avoid these problematic generator functions and generate fundamentally different behaviors. So, a city-state civilization needs to understand the nature of the problem well enough to categorize the design criteria of the solution and then start to develop actual instantiations of solutions that meet those design criteria. Next is starting to prototype governance methods that they have developed to see if they do what they think they will do and refine them. For a city-state civilization to operate smoothly, Daniel expects that people will also need to be trained on how to administer it, run its new type of economic system, and govern it with different roles than what we are used to in the current civilization setup where we have politicians, lawyers, judges, and bankers. So, he pictures a whole new civics, new things that people need to be trained on and a new process of technology design for how to do technology that does not produce toxicity issues and externality. This means that we need a lot of people working on components of this, getting trained on those components who would then be able to build the city-state at scale and populate it to begin with. There is deep enough training that will have to happen in immersive environments which means that communities, villages, places where people are actually together working on training in these new skills and capacities that will then be able to boot the city-state. However, it will initially not be a closed loop and still require getting onto an airplane to fly somewhere or buy a computer from Apple, but they will be developing some of the capacities necessary to build a civilization without those dependencies in the long term. So, Daniel recommends working on a full articulation and description of the design criteria that are necessary so that other people can also play with those ideas and see if those design criteria make sense to them. If they agree with their analysis and work on those things independently, they can start to instantiate those ideas to evolve it towards a full-scale prototype and then spread that prototype. The prototype does not only have to solve the generator functions, but also must be antifragile in the presence of the fact that the rest of the world is still rivalrous. He states that this new system also must be autopoietic which means that it should be able to reproduce, maintain, expand and propagate itself which are all part of the design criteria. As everything needs to be built from scratch, he thinks it a good thing to have many different groups of people working on various areas such as coral reef issues, carbon sequestration issues, or AI risk issues as long as they have a path to make meaningful progress. The assumption is that many people are working on many important things that are part of the same project on a meta level that brings the current trajectory of civilization to a better trajectory. While those big projects are happening, we should still continue with essential tasks such as raising our children, taking care of the elderly, and growing food. It is important for as many people as possible to understand the problem and solution space that we are operating in.[ix]
Daniel also takes the position that we will not survive as a civilization if we do not fix our individual and collective sensemaking.[x] We know from history that every empire breaks down at some point in time. From his perspective we are now in a fully globalized system that is in the process of breakdown. When all the previous systems broke down, they were all localized. He thinks that our current civilization will not continue to just influence the world in a positive direction and is decaying into just less function and irrelevance or possibly into a reboot. For the latter, a cultural prerequisite is necessary where everyone recognizes that collective choice making must be based on collective sensemaking. This means that we need to really invest in doubling down not only on our own biases, but also our capacity to be good at making sense of things, to understand why people are thinking the things that they do, and to communicate well so that we can coordinate. It is clearly not easy to fix collective sensemaking and we have more work to do to figure this out. It is imperative that we need more collective intelligence working on various aspects of the collective sensemaking solution. This implies that we need more people to understand how much this affects most of the other problems that we are concerned about, how it is upstream to those problems, and what factors are contributing to it. When we consider the commons, we think of the shared aspect of the world that is both a resource that we have access to but also one that we need to take care of. Daniel makes the point that the same holds for the information commons which should be the space of information out there about what is true that informs our capacity to make choices. However, what we actually see is an information commons that looks like a smokestack bellowing pollution into the air as most of what is being put into the information commons is pollution. If there are large groups of people that one only has derogatory strawman versions of where one cannot explain why they think what they think without making them dumb or bad, one should be doubtful of one’s own modeling. To fix this Daniel recommends absorbing the news that they are taking in for a day or a week and try to ascertain what the real issues are that they are facing as human beings if one really puts oneself in their shoes. The reason for doing this is not to just empathize with them, but to determine if there is some actual signal that one might be missing. Most of the positions at the moment seem to have some signals and lots of noise. In order for us to synthesize the signals across the space, we would need to seek to understand other human beings with whom we are coordinating and get the relevant parts of their signal as we try to separate the signals from the noise. Daniel makes the claim that if you feel a combination of being scared, outraged, or emotional and very certain about a strong kind of enemy hypothesis orientation, it is likely that you have been captured by somebody’s narrative warfare and you think it is your own thinking. He believes that even if you win at a local battle, whatever social, information or other technologies that you use to win, the other side will reverse engineer and come back and just escalate an “arms race”. So, we are in this case not really moving towards real shared sensemaking and coordination. This does not mean that you never take a position. It means that you are trying to take a position that is not just continuing warfare but trying to elevate the whole space which requires for me to understand the whole space better. For any particular issue there might be multiple narrative clusters each containing many different narrative versions. What Daniel typically does is to first take a landscape of what the narrative clusters are and then try to steelman each narrative, like what is the strongest version of arguing that thing that he is able to see. One thing that he does is to look for the best thinkers that are representative of those narratives. In addition to reading across the space, he also recommends to truly seek the most well-grounded and complex views as opposed to the more trending ones. He wants to find the thinkers that seem most earnest and most well educated and thoughtful across the space and then look for people that have deep expertise and earnestness and disagree with them in order to explore the basis of the disagreement. He encourages people to seek to understand the narrative landscape better on their own, to seek empiricism better, to attempt to not object or take entire narratives but be able to look for partial truths, to try and aggregate signals across the space, and to be way more comfortable with uncertainty even though it can be uncomfortable.[xi]
For any well-functioning and effective democratic society, it is essential for as many citizens as possible to have high quality sensemaking and discourse. US president Thomas Jefferson was very aware of this when he said “if a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be”.[xii] In order to help accelerate a cultural movement toward much improved sensemaking and conversation, Daniel Schmachtenberger and others have recently founded the Consilience Project which is a non-profit media organization that has as a goal to assist with the repairing and rebuilding the health of the information commons “by helping educate people on how to improve their information processing so they can better detect media bias and disinformation while becoming more capable sense-makers and citizens”.[xiii] This would also help to reduce tribalism and divergence and help people to have more effective collaboration in solving problems based on a higher standard of public sense-making and civilized conversation with integrity and good intentions. Wikipedia defines consilience as the principle that “evidence from independent, unrelated sources can converge on strong conclusions” and that when one have many sources of evidence that are in agreement, the conclusion can be very convincing even though the individual sources of evidence might not have a strong conclusion on their own.[xiv] The project itself brings together a new approach to establishing news and educational resources for public information through a content strategy and a movement catalyzing strategy. The content strategy involves a new form of news that optimizes for accuracy and bias correction, a type of meta-news sense-making about what is going on within the media landscape, and education in crucial sense-making skills, media literacy and civics. The movement catalyzing strategy entails sense-making forums, curated resources, and innovation prizes for well-defined public sensemaking and discourse related projects.[xv]
The University of Oxford, supported by Templeton World Charity Foundation, has produced a report Citizenship in a Networked Age – An Agenda for Rebuilding Our Civic Ideal to help the discourse about citizens’ moral decision-making and what it means to be a good citizen in the digital AI-driven networked age or smart technology era.[xvi] The authors Dominic Burbidge, Andrew Briggs and Michael Reiss have made seven main recommendations in this regard that require strong collaboration between stakeholders such as government, industry and citizens. These recommendations include identifying and protecting the uniqueness of humans with respect to moral decision-making, cultivating and developing the complementary skills of humans and machines for collective decision-making, working towards collective agreement about civic ideals for the AI-driven networked age, teaching how to improve listening as a civic virtue, helping us to think before we speak or instantly respond, promoting the value of privacy for personal moral development, and revaluing and appreciating democracy with respect to its ability to help create social unity and trust.[xvii] They advocate that AI and other smart technology should be in service of human moral-decision making and human judgment of the moral whole, where the moral whole of the human community plays a key role in forming a sense of the common good, meaning and purpose. We need to keep in mind that our consciousness, our mortality constraints, and self-awareness of our mortality makes us radically different to machines with respect to goals and moral decision-making capability on an individual and society level where participation in decision-making is a key privilege and a responsibility to our collective citizenship. They observe how the character of citizenship is changing in the smart technology era with AI-driven networking technology changing how people interact and impacting the relationship between the individual and society. We are seeing how AI-driven applications such as search optimization and classification are evolving into respectively influence optimization and learning to decide and optimize. We therefore must be wise in how we use technology to help us make better decisions in support of improving good citizenship, aid our new kinds of communities and institutions that are being formed, deal with citizen privacy in a special manner that protects what is important and significant to a person, and support democratic decision-making that seek consensus in the context of distinctive and often opposing interests.
(For more on this, read the paperback or e-book, or listen to the audiobook or podcast – see jacquesludik.com)
38. Analyzing more Issues and Ideas for Reshaping our Civilization for Beneficial Outcomes
In this section, I am examining some more perspectives on some of the main civilization issues and highlighting some further ideas to help reshape our civilization for the better. All of humanity today constitutes a single civilization. We may have conflicts, but every civilization and family does too.[i] Globally, we understand the basics of politics, economics, and science in the same way. We may argue what the right way is, but we are all a part of the same conversation. In this way we know some of the key problems that we face together such as nuclear war, climate change and technological disruption – the last of which is the most mysterious threat and thus seems the most threatening because of its uncertainty. One is the rise of the global useless class and one is the collapse of liberal democracy.[ii] We have a third issue to consider and that is: If we do not do something about this, considering that evolution is based on survival of the most adaptive, could humankind split?[iii] Those who are adaptive will survive and be the humans of the future – a new species altogether, and everyone else will go in a different direction? Both Yuval Harari and Thomas Friedman draw our attention to the problems and challenges we face, so that we can now do something about it. What will be in their place? How can we direct it? On the other hand, there’s real skepticism about the pace of development. Whilst some see this as moving too fast to catch a breath, others call it the era of stagnation.
Eric Weinstein and Peter Thiel talk about the era of stagnation as starting from the 1970’s except for the world of bits and Silicon Valley.[iv] We have been exceptionally slow in terms of the atom and we should be far further than we should be. There are various dimensions where we could be advancing but we have chosen not to.[v] There is simply too much knowledge for us to be able to understand all of it and bring it all together. Research is highly specialized, and specialization makes it much harder to get a handle on all the other areas of research that could be quite important to move forward in our own research.[vi] We have had great expectations of growth and we are not living up to them. Peter Thiel and Eric Weinstein feel that we are not being honest about our actual rate of growth or about the stability or positivity of organisations and institutions. All the things we have been waiting for are further away than we expected, and the start-up momentum is falling.[vii] Is it important to understand what is real and what is not? And what has been oversold? If we are considering our actual landscape, then we should actually know what we are dealing with? The idea of a College Equivalency Degree is posed as something that should be enough to prove that we have the knowledge to perform a task.[viii] Certain kinds of knowledge have become so prestigious and exclusive without much meaning or even practical value. Eric Weinstein also discusses a further complication of ideas being suppressed by protecting academic, media, economic, government and other institutions from individuals or groups of people who might have valid and reasonable ideas that do not fit into the mainstream institutional narratives and possibly highly disruptive to an institutional order. He refers to this as a Distributed Idea Suppression Complex (DISC) which consists of a decentralized and distributed collection of different emergent structures that not only suppresses ideas but has led to lack of meaningful progress in some areas, significant income inequality and social unrest.[ix] The democratization of AI, smart technology, science, and knowledge in general can help to address some of these problems. AI-driven solutions can for example help us with collective sensemaking, having smarter information filters, being open to other ideas and opinions, and offer excellent education to everyone without the burden of debt and without geographic restrictions. Peter Thiel as a contrarian believes that we should also be worried about the lack of automation. With more automation we could get to 3-4% GDP growth and with that solve social problems.[x] This is therefore something governments should be seriously investing in.
The global economy is not as we would like to believe it is. It is in crisis. As much as we may like to keep focusing our attention on more easily fixable, smaller matters, we can no longer ignore the common denominator that sustains and deteriorates our current state. We have almost exhausted our natural resources, productivity is declining, growth is slow, unemployment is rising, and inequality is deepening. We need to consider the efficacy or sustainability of our current economic models and find more stable social and economic solutions. Social and economic theorist Jeremy Rifkin suggests a new economic system – the Radical New Sharing Economy.[xi] Rifkin argues that with climate change ravaging the planet at devastating speeds, we need to act fast. “Change of this magnitude requires political will and a profound ideological shift”.[xii] Frightening as this may sound. Rifkin is not wrong. His solution is however, just one solution in a sea of many. In short, the Radical New Sharing Economy proposes a decentralized global system that relies on the convergence of three technologies: ultra-fast 5G communication internet, renewable energy internet, and driverless mobility internet, all connected through IoT and embedded across society and the environment. When we evaluate well-being on an aggregate level (welfare economics), we are looking to describe and predict what affects levels of well-being. Of course, we are interested in how technology adoption will affect our wellbeing and the implications that it might have on economics and society. Fear is of course detrimental to well-being and fear is also rather prominent in the age of acceleration, smart technology, globalization, automation, and any other name we want to give it. It is all part of the Smart Technology Era.
With regards to economic growth and the current state of capitalism, Yuval Harari points out that “the credo of ‘more stuff’ urges individuals, firms and governments to disregard anything that might hamper economic growth, such as preserving social equality, ensuring ecological harmony and honoring one’s parents”.[xiii] On the other hand capitalism encourages people to stop seeing the world in a way where someone else’s profit is our loss “and instead see it as a win-win situation, in which your profit is also my profit” – something that contributes to global harmony.[xiv] An important question to ask is if our current capitalism is working for us? The answer seems obviously no. Rising inequalities in means, access, knowledge, basic rights, and knowledge makes it somewhat obvious that our current state is not working for us. So, what can a future look like that promotes fairness for all. We need to reimagine and reinvent capitalism – something already working well for some, but to find a way to make it work better for everyone. The wealth gap accompanied by an opportunity gap and values gap, made more obvious by globalization means that our current social, economic and political systems cannot go on for much longer.[xv] In this, the highest priority is addressing the state of the average worker and those who are not lucky enough to be considered the average worker.[xvi] We perceive that we live in a capitalist society, but capitalism is by nature (whilst maybe just in theory) competitive, where people are competing in the same society, all of whom have the right and opportunity to participate and contribute to the economy. But this competitive capitalism which was the dream capitalism was based upon does not exist. Our market in modern time, even more so in the 21st century is a market of monopolies.[xvii] Up until the 1970s, the middle class has been growing and benefiting from capitalism in their ability to compete in the market with as little as a high school education – to buy cars and homes and live relatively fruitful lives.
We saw capitalism collapse for the first time in 1929. From there, fascism, nazism, communism, war and social unrest rose.[xviii] The same thing happened in 2008, after capitalism had rebuilt in post war years. We are still seeing the effects of that, with more and more people being sidelined from the economy that the 1970s allowed them to be a part of.[xix] What we need now is an alternative to capitalism. One that is intentional, lasting and aims to solve a common solution to a common problem.[xx] To do this we need to build hope in place of populist reactions that rise in defiance to the current states of most people. Economist, academic, philosopher and politician Yanis Varoufakis, believes that we are not going to build a world worth having by building wars and buying weapons.[xxi] In fact, we must be committed to minimize human suffering. If that means reinventing capitalism or finding an alternative, then these are the solutions we must explore. The proposed DiEM25 aims to remove borders for an inclusive Europe. The borders that the EU defines should not matter, because the movement exists to not be defined or confined by any reigning social, political, or economic foundations, rules or policies which are simply not working for most people.[xxii]
Let us take a brief look at what the DiEM25 is, why it was founded and what it aims to achieve. Commonly described as a “Star Trek world where a type of communism (not the communism you know, so please ignore whatever feelings this ignites) reigns outside of the hands of the state and within the hands of people”, DiEM25 promotes the ability of each person to own a percentage in the shares of organisations, whose current riches are part of the growing inequality and unrest in the rest of the world, but are simultaneously tied into the very people being economically left behind for their income and success. It is simply impossible to keep up. Sounds complicated? Let us use Varoufakis’ example of Google. The more people who use Google, or any other application for that matter, the more valuable it becomes. The more data it has, the more people use it, and the more people are projected to use it. Each new user means more money today and more projected money for the future. This is known as Metcalfe’s law (which states that the value or utility of a network is proportional to the number of users of the network).[xxiii] The DiEM25’s neoliberalist view or reimagined capitalism says that because Google is so reliant on the average citizen to create value, the average citizen is entitled to a share of the business that his/her use of the product affects the value. Google Maps relies on each citizen’s use of Google on a mobile phone to know how full the roads are and then advise other routes.[xxiv] This is just one example of the top technology companies’ value being heavily reliant on its users. The point is that some of the richest companies in the world are only rich because of either how many people use them or the data that they can generate to give their product use and, in turn, value. Bear in mind this is not just today’s value that we are talking about, but according to Metcalfe’s Law, if the number of network users is at 100 000, merely adding one more user follows that 100 000 more users are to come. The more users there are, the more value the network has and then, the more money it has.[xxv] So each user’s value to Google, Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Microsoft, IBM etc. is worth a lot more to the companies than one more user. What this means for Facebook, who owns Instagram and WhatsApp is every time they have one new user, they have the potential to make millions, if not billions more. Here lies the very core of DiEM25. Since we are all integral parts of not only the usefulness, but value and capital growth of these organisations, we are really more like employees than users. We are not just using the products; our data is adding usefulness and value to other people and to the organizations themselves. Thus, we should be remunerated like employees with shares in their profits.
As there are simply not enough jobs and even more so with globalization, AI-driven applications can help ensure that every person has an income that allows them to meaningfully take care of themselves and their families. Relying on the state for tax money to support the most extremely excluded and downtrodden is simply not working, especially since these numbers are growing every day. We need to consider other systems and states of being that aim to eradicate human suffering while still promoting innovation, inclusion and contribution to society and the economy. What would we say of citizens, mostly situated in Africa and Asia, who do not have access to a smart phone or any other personal technology and are not participating in the digital economy, digital data and involved in the profits of the reigning technologies? This goes to our previous argument for using smart technology to leapfrog socio-economic inclusion and generally include more people in the information revolution and globalization. Access to the internet and a smartphone is vital to being able to access basic services such as doctor’s consultants, medication, products, food knowledge and education (formal and informal). As a starting point, through ensuring each citizen not only has access to affordable (or free) smartphones and internet but is educated in the use of these devices and how they may access the items mentioned above, we are including everyone on the globe in the benefits and new ways technology can improve our lives. We would also need to ensure that the services promised on the other ends of our smartphones exist. For example, we use drone technology and GPS tracking to deliver the necessary medicine to a person who has had a virtual appointment or even an AI-powered doctor’s appointment, received a diagnosis (in cases where hospital or in-person escalation has not been recommended) and received a prescription for, say, cholera medication. Services such as these are far more beneficial for residents of remote villages than they are for city dwellers, as they are far more beneficial for those without access to private healthcare than those with access. They remove the need for a long walk and two or three forms of public transport (if there is access to this) just to get to see a doctor. Once they arrive at the clinic, there is no guarantee that they will even get to a doctor that day. If they do manage to see a doctor approximately 5 hours after arrival, there is no guarantee that the medicine they need will be in stock. If it is not, they may be asked to return in a week – another long trip with still no guarantee that they will receive the medicine they need. This speaks to the importance of access to smart technology for basic services. Now, let us speak to access to the rewards for participating in and contributing to the digital ecosystem – as an employee would. If we treat each person who contributes to the use and value of a platform, as an employee, then we seem to have begun to solve the problem of economic exclusion, fear of jobs loss and replacement and an inability to enter the job market in the first place.
In a Quartz article about fixing capitalism they mention that “capitalism is not an organic system, markets are not forces of nature, and companies don’t have minds of their own” and see all of them as “collections of human decisions, rules, incentives, predictions, and unintended consequences” and that we can make changes to them if we want to.[xxvi] There has also been for many years a major debate about traditional shareholder capitalism that primarily focuses on unlocking shareholder value and stakeholder capitalism that consider all the stakeholders of a company including the owners (provide long-term value, clarity and effective engagement), customers (deliver value to them), employees (investing in them), suppliers (treating them in a just and ethical way) and communities (respecting the people and safeguarding the environment through sustainable activities).[xxvii] Ray Dalio, co-founder of the world largest hedge fund Bridgewater Associates, recently claimed that Chinese’s state capitalism and development of capital markets is advancing whilst US capitalism needs urgent repair.[xxviii] Having visited China on a regular basis over the past 35 years, he has seen per-capita incomes increasing by 30 times; them producing significant more computer engineers and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics graduates; and estimates that 40% of the new initial public offerings will be done by Chinese companies on Chinese exchanges with institutional investors to follow. Ray is still a big believer in capitalism as he says that his “exposure to most economic systems in most countries over many years taught me that the ability to make money, save it, and put it into capital (i.e., capitalism) is the most effective motivator of people and allocator of resources to raise people’s living standards.”[xxix] However, he is very concerned that capitalism is not working well for the majority of people in the United States as the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer with the middle class being hollowed out, which in turn creates a wider wealth gap that is damaging for the US and can lead to major conflicts and even revolution. He reckons that to solve this would require expert re-engineering of the economic system, but “the problem is that capitalists typically don’t know how to divide the pie well and socialists typically don’t know how to grow it well.” In a LinkedIn article he describes in detail why and how capitalism needs to be reformed, why he believes that capitalism is not working well for the majority of people, his diagnosis of the problem and what should be done.[xxx] He shows that real income growth for most people was stagnant for decades, the income gap is at its highest, the wealth gap is at its highest since the latter part of the 1930s, and most people in the bottom 60% are poor. As there is a causal effect of where personal development impacts productivity growth which in turn impacts income growth, Ray points straight to poorly educated children within poor families with weak support and poorly funded schools as a major culprit. He shows that the US scores low on an educational level with being bottom 15th percentile of the developed world. Many students have emotional problems and are not sufficiently prepared for work, which in turn leads to poor health and social consequences, economic costs, and even higher crime rates. The result is a growing gap with respect to opportunity, income, and wealth, which in turn leads to hazardous social and political polarization. His diagnosis of why capitalism is not working for the majority of people in the US boils down to companies that are chasing profit and greater efficiencies by replacing US workers with technology and cost-effective foreign workers; making good healthcare and education more expensive and even unaffordable for the majority; the rich get richer because of increasing prices of financial assets that they own and their tendency to purchase financial assets as opposed to goods and services with the poor left less creditworthy; and the focus on policy makers on budgets as opposed to returns on investments. To fix this, he recommends that we need to make changes to capitalism that enable more equal opportunities and increased productivity. It all starts with governmental leadership that needs to treat the income, wealth, and opportunity gap as a national emergency. Ray would like to see bipartisan and skilled policy workers collaborating to redesign and reengineer the economic system to raise money and spend or invest it well to produce excellent double bottom line returns with unambiguous metrics to determine success. He would also like to see that monetary and fiscal policies are better coordinated to stimulate economic growth and lessen the effects that quantitative easing (to increase the money supply to increase lending and controlling inflation) has on increasing the wealth gap. Ray also reckons that the redistribution of resources will improve most people’s well-being and productivity through creating private-public partnerships that invests in double bottom line projects that would have measurable economic and social performance results; raising money to improve economic productivity and conditions by taking into account all-in societal costs; and raising more from the wealthy via taxes that would be engineered to not have productivity disrupted and being set aside to those in need to improve the economy’s overall level of productivity in a paid for manner.[xxxi]
(For more on this, read the paperback or e-book, or listen to the audiobook or podcast – see jacquesludik.com)
39. Various Potential Outcomes for the Future of Civilization
40. Beneficial Outcomes, Massive Transformative Purpose, and Smart Goals
MTP for Humanity and its associated Goals
This Democratizing AI Newsletter coincides with the launch of BiCstreet‘s “AI World Series” Live event, which kicked off both virtually and in-person (limited) from 10 March 2022, where Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone is discussed in more detail over a 10-week AI World Series programme. The event is an excellent opportunity for companies, startups, governments, organisations and white collar professionals all over the world, to understand why Artificial Intelligence is critical towards strategic growth for any department or genre. (To book your tickets to this global event click the link below and enter this Coupon Code to get 5% Discount: Enter Coupon Code: JACQUES001 (Purchase Tickets here: https://www.BiCflix.com; See the 10 Weekly Program here: https://www.BiCstreet.com)).
Background LinkedIn Articles on Democratizing Artificial Intelligence
The audio book version of “Democratizing Artificial Intelligence to Benefit Everyone” is also available via major audio book market place world-wide. See details on my website as well as below. You can also listen to audio content of this book on the Jacques Ludik YouTube Channel or Jacques Ludik Podcasts. This release is in follow-up to the e-book (Kindle) and paperback version of the book that was released earlier this year on Amazon with some further updates recently.
For some background, see also the following introductory articles Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone and AI Perspectives, Democratizing Human-centric AI in Africa, and Acknowledgements – Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone (as well as United Nations & Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone; World Economic Forum and Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone; OECD and Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone; AI for Good and Democratizing AI to Benefit Everyone).
For further details, see jacquesludik.com.
What does it Mean to be Human and Living Meaningful in the 21st Century?
[iii] Victor Frankl, Man’s Search For Meaning: An Introduction to Logotherapy.
[v] Victor Frankl, Man’s Search For Meaning: An Introduction to Logotherapy.
[vi] Stephen Leach & James Tartaglia (editors), The Meaning of Life and the Great Philosophers 1st Edition; https://www.amazon.com/Meaning-Life-Great-Philosophers/dp/1138220957
Problematic Trajectory of Our Current Civilization in the Smart Technology Era
[iii] https://civilizationemerging.com/; Rebel Wisdom: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCR85PW_B_7_Aisx5vNS7Gjw; The Portal: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFQ6Gptuq-sLflbJ4YY3Umw; Modern Wisdom: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIaH-gZIVC432YRjNVvnyCA; Tom Bilyeau: thttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnYMOamNKLGVlJgRUbamveA; The Seeking: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSZF0YOWeee_RTx-SZL7U2w; Neurohacker: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCv9hjmC-M77u3E8lUuO1-nQ; Future Thinkers: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqKnDDavIqBKZuvgQtYAJsA; The Nantucket Project: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChYTzcMxdNAwWFLpx6jIFug; Foresight Institute: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCg5UVUMqXeCQ03MelT_RXMg; Max Hug: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMrn6U9ZY6_yMzg7OObvogw
Analyzing more Issues and Ideas for Reshaping our Civilization for Beneficial Outcomes
[xiii] Yuval Harari, Homo Deus, pg. 243
[xiv] Yuval Harari, Homo Deus, pg. 244-245
[xix] Richard Baldwin, The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and The Future of Work.
[xxv] Richard Baldwin, The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and the Future of Work, pg. 98 – 100.