The MinMaxMan concept had been presented for the first time in Ojai, California, for my friends at the Krishnamurti Foundation, in July 1997.
Already at that time, all details of this concept had been technologically feasible. Since then, even though no new paradigms evolved, technological progress has refined and empowered the machinery necessary for an implementation of a MinMaxMan.
The creation of a MinMaxMan constitutes the feasibility, and hence possibility, of a Non-AI Singularity – one ‘entity’ that could override the Will and Wants of the rest of humanity.
The reality of an actual threat can be considered having a probability of some of orders of magnitude higher than that of a much feared AI-singularity. Yet, it doesn’t seem to raise eyebrows as much as the latter.
This article aims to increase the awareness of the actual possibility of such a singularity as a reality that could emerge TODAY.
Some of the paradoxes involved with this concept have been described in the Science Fiction series of ‘The Logs of JD Flora’, first published as an ‘e-zine’ over the period of 18 months, starting in April of 1995. There, a MinMaxMan, based on a minimal physical apparatus called the ‘substrate’, acts as the entity SFYNX and interacts via the Internet with human ‘users’ and ‘super-users’, defeating the boundaries of space and time.
The path to the creation of MinMaxMan begins with the consideration of a Buddhist concept elaborated by Grimm Georg in ‘Die Lehre des Buddho’: if one would subtract physical functionality from a person, would the person as such ‘change’ or not? For example, a person who has lost a leg would still be the same person even though it would have a limitation in physical movement. Likewise, a person having lost eye sight is still the same ‘person’. With this, we arrive at the (quite horrible) vision of a MinMan, a quadriplegic, blind, and deaf man who nevertheless of would have a sense of himself, have consciousness, and a Will.
Now enter modern technology: we can restore at least some basic functionality with prosthetic devices and simulate vision and audio via receptors on areas of skin, like the back and resonators near skull bones. We could further remove the heart and replace it with an electro-mechanic pump and likewise substitutes the lungs by an apparatus of enriching the blood stream artificially with oxygen. In the end, we could also use artificial nutrition and do away with stomach and intestines.
The end result appears to be a hybrid of technology and a biological substrate: a brain, some skin and muscle tissue for perceptions and controls (input/output).
But this is only the first phase of MinMaxMan because NOW we can start augmenting the qualities and quantities of perception and action potential of this hybrid. And we can do that to a degree that is dwarfing any potentials of the past:
- connect multiple channels of high-definition video to the visual inputs
- connect multiple audio channels
- connect controls to fly drones and tanks
- add weapon controls
- connect to large data banks of all literature ever published
- connect live-biographies (today’s Facebook) for real-time information on every living person
If we add sufficient controls and pathways and nobody interferes, one single such person could assume control over progressively larger and larger areas of society (such a scenario is also possible without prior minimization of the human body function, of course).
Note, that for this Non-AI singularity to happen, NO revolution is necessary, it could happen at any time, even right now, and the person in control could, in theory, be anyone of those of the 7 billions humans walking on Earth who have access to the Internet, irregardless of race, initial financial power, age or gender.
In extension, we can safely declare the major ingredients of all past philosophies and ideologies as null and void – a vision of the MinMaxMan overrides any ideology or scientific ‘reality’ – from Socrates, Machiavelli , and Descartes to Hume. We witness a potential reality which has never been considered in history except in a few post-50’s Science Fiction works.
But we’re not talking about Science Fiction:
You, dear reader, could be declared OBSOLETE
right this minute by such a Non-AI singularity.