Printed: 2020-08-06

Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies

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Is SETI Downloading an AI an X-Risk?

June 17, 2010

In this talk Alexey Turchin argues that the program of the search of extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) is a source of extinction risk. The main idea is that passive SETI is much more dangerous activity than messaging to stars because we could download Alien AI (that is a scheme of a computer and program to it) which will use the Earth to send its copies further. The following is based on two premises:
First is that extraterrestrial civilizations do exist in the distances which allow radio communication, but do not allow interstellar travel (which is from one thousand to one million light years).
Second is that artificial intelligence is possible as a self-evolving classic computer program.

Alexey Turchin was born in Moscow, Russia in 1973. Alexey studied Physics and Art History at Moscow State University and actively participated in the Russian Transhumanist Movement. He has translated many foreign Transhumanist works into Russian, including N. Bostrom and E.Yudkowsky. He is an expert in Global Risks and wrote the book “Structure of the Global Catastrophe: Risks of Human Extinction in the XXI Century,” as well as several articles on the topic. Since 2010, he has worked at Science Longer Life where he is writing a book on futurology.



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