Prof. Dr. Hugo de GARIS
Retired, Summer 2010
In the summer of 2010, I retired from my job as Director of the Artificial Brain Lab (ABL), Xiamen University, China, at the age of 63, to concentrate on my strongest intellectual interests of pure math and mathematical physics, and pushing the “species dominance” and “globist” issues. During the period 2008-2010 I was building China’s first artificial brain by evolving neural net modules in $10,000 super computers very fast (seconds to minutes) and then connecting them into humanly specified architectures to make artificial brains to control the behaviors of robots. This evolutionary approach I labeled “Evolutionary Engineering.”
I am now (what I call) ARCing, (i.e. After Retirement Careering). I have longevity genes, take multi-vitamins and exercise vigorously for 15 minutes every day, so I expect to live into my 90s, i.e. 25+ more years, a big block of time. Since I am now no longer a wage slave, I am free to do what I like, and live off my American savings, which go 7 times further in China, given the much lower cost of living, so I can afford to retire much earlier.
Globacator (Global Educator)
Starting in 2012, I began making Masters and PhD level YouTube lecture course videos in Pure Math, Math Physics, and Computer Theory to educate students around the world in these topics for free. I also set up an e-library in these topics plus philosophy, brain, etc for students to use.
Over the past few years I have appeared in about a movie a year on the species dominance issue (whether humanity should build artilects (artificial intellects) or not.) The number of invitations to appear in the world media has picked up considerably after the appearance of the Hollywood movie “Transcendence” which I suspect was based on my book “The Artilect War”
Current Life Style
My life style now is rather unusual. I spend my afternoons in my favorite beautiful park (see the Photos section) and study and read all night, going to bed after the sun comes up. I love the quiet of the night, and can close in on my own thoughts, which come quickly at night. I’m obviously a night person.
Books and Essays
I have read that the average scientific published paper is read by only one other person. So perhaps for years, to earn a salary, I have been churning out 150 published papers that have barely been read. That is rather dispiriting. So now, I feel free to do what I like, which is to study intensively PhD level pure mathematics and mathematical physics to write books on such topics as Topological Quantum Computing (TQC), for which I have a contract with World Scientific, (as well as on Artificial Brains, with the same publisher). I am also very interested in the possibility of a femto meter technology (“Fermitech”), so I’m hunting around for phenomena at the femto meter level (quarks, gluons, nucleons, nuclei, etc) that might serve as a basis for a technology that is a million times smaller and hence faster than nanotech. I also plan to write books on a host of social and technical topics. Here is a list of possible future book titles, which are rather self explanatory.
a) Masculism (i.e. Mens Lib, pushing the idea that girls around the world should be raised to be career conscious and hence financially independent as adults so as not to parasite off mens money.)
b) Sageism (i.e. Discrimination against the Sages (wise knowledgeable intellectuals))
c) Mathematical God
e) Democratization Plan for China
f) Brain Theory
g) ARCing (After Retirement Careering)
h) Science vs. PC (using science to attack popular myths)
I also write essays on a range of topics, mostly concerning the rise of massively intelligent machines (e.g. see the essays on this website), and on globism (the ideology in favor of creating a global state), plus other social and technical topics.
Species Dominance Publicity
One of my strongest interests is in promoting worldwide an awareness of the “Species Dominance Issue”, i.e. the question whether humanity should or should not build godlike massively intelligent machines this century. I see this question dominating our global politics this century and will eventually lead to the worst, most passionate war that humanity has ever had, “The Artilect War” which will kill billions of people (“gigadeath”) using later 21st century weapons. I get regularly in the international media on this issue, and the frequency of such occurrences is increasing, as the performance level of artificial intelligence keeps increasing (e.g. IBM’s Watson’s recent defeat of the best human performers on the quiz game “Jeopardy”) My first book “The Artilect War : Cosmists vs. Terrans : A Bitter Controversy Concerning Whether Humanity Should Build Godlike Massively Intelligent Machines” (see the Books section) was on the issue of species dominance. See the Media section for my appearances on the world media on this huge question.
Another topic that obsesses me is Globism, i.e. the ideology in favor of creating a global state, that would rid the world of war, of the arms trade, nuclear weapons, ignorance and poverty. I see the annual doubling of the speed of the internet (and many other factors) enabling the creation of this world state (that I call “Globa”) by mid century. My second book “Multis and Monos : What the Multi-Cultured Can Teach the Mono-Cultured : Towards the Creation of a Global State” is about Globism. I’m hoping that my species dominance publicity will give me more opportunities in the future to present Globist ideas to the world. I’m as optimistic about Globism as I am pessimistic about the Artilect War. For articles and media appearances on the theme of Globa, see the tab “GLOBA”(L) State on my website.
Pre Retirement Resume/CV
This section is more history than anything. It gives an idea of what I was doing with the first “half” of my career. The second half I’m beginning now, that I call ARCing. Its a second career, wageless, so I’m free to do what I like, which is most liberating.
To see my earlier resume/CV, click on the following (link).
Now that I am in my 60s, and ARCing (i.e. After Retirement Careering, which I describe as “wage free careering in the third third of life”) I have returned (after working 20 years on artificial brains) to my old love of mathematical physics, studying intensively PhD level pure math and mathematical physics, with the view of writing several books on math/physics topics, such as “Topological Quantum Computing” and “Fermitech”.
I am now actively hunting down phenomena in physics at the femtometer scale that might serve as substrates to allow computation and engineering at that tiny scale. Since a femtometer (a.k.a. a “Fermi”) is 10-15 of a meter, to find such phenomena implies that one should be hunting at the nuclear, nucleon, and elementary particle levels. Hence one should be studying nuclear physics, elementary particles physics, QCD (quantum chromo dynamics), etc. I spend my afternoons in my favorite (beautiful) park, and my nights in my apartment, studying the following subjects in pure math, and theoretical physics, partly because of a deep inherent love of these topics, as well as being motivated to use this knowledge to try to find bases for a fermitech.
In pure math, I’m studying :- finite groups, abstract algebra, Lie theory, general topology, algebraic topology, algebraic geometry , smooth manifolds, complex manifolds, representation theory, ring theory, Galois theory, knot theory, quantum groups, low dimensional topology, etc.
In theoretical physics, I’m studying :- quantum mechanics, quantum field theory, nuclear physics, elementary particle physics, quantum electrodynamics (QED), quantum chromodynamics (QCD), special and general relativity, gauge theory, supersymmetry (SUSY), supergravity, superstring theory, M-theory, brane theory, conformal field theory (CFT), topological quantum field theory (TQFT), topological quantum computing (TQC), etc.
At the top end of both subjects, low dimensional topology and gauge theory have merged, thanks to the genius of Ed Witten, today’s Einstein, and the only physicist ever to have won the coveted Fields Medal for mathematics. I call this math-physics merge “mathics”.
To see a preliminary article on these themes, click on this (link). For further articles, see the Femtotech tab on my wesbite.
Topological Quantum Computing (TQC)
In 1997, Kitaev had the idea of storing quantum bits in topological quantum fields, which are robust against local distrubance, and hence in theory could make quantum computers robust and hence scalable to large numbers of quantum bits. Since quantum computers can outperform today’s classical computers by a factor of 2 to power N, where N is the number of qubits in a quantum register, quantum computers will utterly eclipse classical computers and revolutionize everything – physics, chemistry, biology, economics, politics etc. Ministries of education will be phoning the presidents of major universities instructing them that their institutions are to teach TQC, for the economic health of the country. Deans of computer science will then be shocked to learn how heavily mathematical physics based TQC is, and will be forced to revolutionize their computer science curricula, which in effect will become much more pure math and math physics based. Since pure math and math physics are intellectually the most demanding on campus, the future status of computer science will rise to the same level as pure math and math physics.
I am contracted with World Scientific (Singapore) to write the planet’s first text book on the topic of TQC. It will either be a tome of about 800 pages or will consist of several books, since there is so much heavy math and physics to explain.
To see a preliminary article on these themes, click on this (link).
So, I have my plate full, undertaking an ambitious program of study and keeping an idea note book on my desk, that I’m constantly jotting ideas into.
This book’s main idea is that this century’s global politics will be dominated by the "species dominance" issue. 21st century technologies will enable the building of artilects (artificial intellects, artificial intelligences, massively intelligent machines) with 1040 components, using reversible, heatless, 3D, molecular scale, self assembling, one bit per atom, nano-teched, quantum computers, which may dwarf human intelligence levels by a factor of trillions of trillions and more.
The question that will dominate global politics this century will be whether humanity should or should not build these artilects. Those in favor of building them are called "Cosmists" in this book, due to their "cosmic" perspective. Those opposed to building them are called "Terrans," as in "terra," the Earth, which is their perspective. The Cosmists will want to build artilects, amongst other reasons, because to them it will be a religion, a scientist's religion that is compatible with modern scientific knowledge.
The Cosmists will feel that humanity has a duty to serve as the stepping-stone towards building the next dominant rung of the evolutionary ladder. Not to do so would be a tragedy on a cosmic scale to them. The Cosmists will claim that stopping such an advance will be counter to human nature, since human beings have always striven to extend their boundaries. Another Cosmist argument is that once the artificial brain based computer market dominates the world economy, economic and political forces in favor of building advanced artilects will be almost unstoppable. The Cosmists will include some of the most powerful, the richest, and the most brilliant of the Earth's citizens, who will devote their enormous abilities to seeing that the artilects get built. A similar argument applies to the military and its use of intelligent weaponry. Neither the commercial nor the military sectors will be willing to give up artilect research unless they are subjected to extreme Terran pressure.
To the Terrans, building artilects will mean taking the risk that the latter may one day decide to exterminate human beings, either deliberately or through indifference. The only certain way to avoid such a risk is not to build them in the first place. The Terrans will argue that human beings will fear the rise of increasingly intelligent machines and their alien differences. To build artilects will require an "evolutionary engineering" approach. The resulting complexities of the evolved structures that underlie the artilects will be too great for human beings to be able to predict the behaviors and attitudes of the artilects towards human beings. The Terrans will be prepared to destroy the Cosmists, even on a distant Cosmist colony, if the Cosmists go ahead with an advanced artilect building program.
In the short to middle term, say the next 50 years or so, the artificial brain based industries will flourish, providing products that are very useful and very popular with the public, such as teacher robots, conversation robots, household cleaner robots, etc. In time, the world economy will be based on such products. Any attempt to stop the development of increasingly intelligent artilects will be very difficult, because the economic and political motivation to continue building them will be very strong in certain circles. If the brain-based computer industries were to stop their research and development into artilects, then many powerful individuals, including the artilect company presidents and certain politicians will lose big money and political influence. They will not give up their status without a fight.
However, as the intelligence levels of the early artilects increases, it will become obvious to everyone that the intelligence gap between these artificial-brain-based products and human beings is narrowing. This will create a growing public anxiety. Eventually, some nasty incident or series of incidents will galvanize most of society against further increase of artificial intelligence in the artilects, leading to the establishment of a global ban on artilect research.
The Cosmists however, will oppose a ban on the development of more intelligent artilects, and will probably go underground. If the incidents continue and are negative enough, the anger and hatred of the Terrans towards the Cosmists will increase to the point where the Cosmists may decide that their fate is to leave the Earth, an option that is quite realistic with 21st century technology.
Since the Cosmists will include some of the most brilliant and economically powerful people on the planet, they will probably create an elite conspiratorial organization whose aim is to build artilects secretly.
The book presents a scenario in which the Cosmists create an asteroid-based colony, masked by some innocuous activity. In reality, this secret society devises a weapon system superior to the best on the Earth. With their wealth and the best human brains, this may be achievable. They will also start making advanced artilects. If the Terrans on the Earth discover the true intentions of the Cosmists, they will probably want to destroy them, but not dare to because of the counter threat of the Cosmists with their more advanced weapons. The stage is thus set for a major 21st century war in which billions of people die – "gigadeath."
This horrific number is derived from an extrapolation up the graph of the number of deaths in major wars from the beginning of the 19th century to the end of the 21st century. Approximately 200 million people died in the 20th century, for political reasons -- wars, purges, genocides, etc.
The profound schizophrenia that the author feels on the Cosmist/Terran species dominance issue will be felt by millions of people within a few years he expects. There is probably Cosmist and Terran in nearly all of us, which may explain why this issue is so divisive. The author is simply one of the first to feel this schizophrenia. Within a decade it may be all over the planet.
The last chapter of the book closes with a repetition of a pithy slogan that summarizes the two main viewpoints in the artilect debate in a nutshell; a debate that the author believes will be raging in the coming decades.
"Do we build gods, or do we build our potential exterminators?"