Re: Genetically Modifying other Mammals to be as Smart as Us [WAS Re: Syllabus for Seed Developer Qualifications]

From: Philip Goetz (
Date: Sun Feb 19 2006 - 08:05:28 MST

On 2/3/06, George Dvorsky <> wrote:

What Jef said is right:

1. The question I posed had to do with near-term human responses.
Saying the difference is moot because of some future state is like
saying that discussing which path leads to AI quickest is moot because
we'll get there eventually.

2. All the evidence suggests that more complex systems provide more,
not fewer, evolutionary niches.

> This discussion has reminded me of Stephen J. Dick who, in his 2003
> paper "Cultural Evolution, the Postbiological Universe and SETI," put
> forth the "Intelligence Principle," in which he declared that "the
> maintenance, improvement and perpetuation of knowledge and intelligence
> is the central driving force of cultural evolution, and that to the
> extent intelligence can be improved, it will be improved."

And THAT reminds me of pre-WWI Western thought, which believed exactly
the same thing. Which is why they believed that humanity was aspiring
to a peak of evolution foreordained by God. Which is a notion that
Stephen J. Gould has spent a great deal of time fighting. (This post
is not an endorsement of Stephen Gould.) But which also leads to your
conclusion that evolution will converge.

- Phil

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