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Archive for the ‘existential risks’ category

Sep 21, 2017

‘I was just doing my job’: Soviet officer who averted nuclear war dies at age 77

Posted by in category: existential risks

A Soviet officer who prevented a nuclear crisis between the US and the USSR and possible World War III in the 1980s has quietly passed away. He was 77. In 2010 RT spoke to Stanislav Petrov, who never considered himself a hero. We look at the life of the man who saved the world.

A decision that Soviet lieutenant colonel Stanislav Petrov once took went down in history as one that stopped the Cold War from turning into nuclear Armageddon, largely thanks to Karl Schumacher, a political activist from Germany who helped the news of his heroism first reach a western audience nearly two decades ago.

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Sep 18, 2017

No, We Cannot Shoot Down North Korea’s Missiles

Posted by in category: existential risks

It’s time national leaders speak realistically about missile defense.

The number one reason we don’t shoot down North Korea’s missiles is that we cannot.

Officials like to reassure their publics about our defense to these missiles. Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told his nation after last week’s test, “We didn’t intercept it because no damage to Japanese territory was expected.”

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Sep 16, 2017

‘How do we survive?’: fearful Californians prepare for nuclear attack

Posted by in category: existential risks

Retired Lt Col Hal Kempfer and his group, Knowledge and Intelligence Program Professionals, see Long Beach as a prime target for an attack from North Korea.

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Sep 14, 2017

We will sink Japan and turn US to ‘ashes and darkness’, says North Korea

Posted by in category: existential risks

Tokyo condemns ‘absolutely unacceptable’ provocation, as Pyongyang reacts to imposition of new UN sanctions following missile tests.

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Sep 7, 2017

Should We be Cautious about Envisioning Dystopias?

Posted by in categories: entertainment, ethics, existential risks, futurism, human trajectories, media & arts, philosophy, transhumanism

How will our relationship to technology evolve in the future? Will we regard it as something apart from ourselves, part of ourselves, or as a new area of evolution? In this new video from the Galactic Public Archives, Futurist Gray Scott explains that we are a part of a technological cosmos. Do you agree with Scott that technology is built into the universe, waiting to be discovered?

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Aug 9, 2017

How to avoid nuclear war with North Korea

Posted by in categories: economics, existential risks, military

IT IS odd that North Korea causes so much trouble. It is not exactly a superpower. Its economy is only a fiftieth as big as that of its democratic capitalist cousin, South Korea. Americans spend twice its total GDP on their pets. Yet Kim Jong Un’s backward little dictatorship has grabbed the attention of the whole world, and even of America’s president, with its nuclear brinkmanship. On July 28th it tested an intercontinental ballistic missile that could hit Los Angeles. Before long, it will be able to mount nuclear warheads on such missiles, as it already can on missiles aimed at South Korea and Japan. In charge of this terrifying arsenal is a man who was brought up as a demigod and cares nothing for human life—witness the innocents beaten to death with hammers in his gigantic gulag. Last week his foreign ministry vowed that if the regime’s “supreme dignity” is threatened, it will “pre-emptively annihilate” the countries that threaten it, with all means “including the nuclear ones”. Only a fool could fail to be alarmed.

What another Korean war might look like

Yet the most serious danger is not that one side will suddenly try to devastate the other. It is that both sides will miscalculate, and that a spiral of escalation will lead to a catastrophe that no one wants. Our briefing this week lays out, step by step, one way that America and North Korea might blunder into a nuclear war (see article). It also lists some of the likely consequences. These include: for North Korea, the destruction of its regime and the death of hundreds of thousands of people. For South Korea, the destruction of Seoul, a city of 10m within easy range of 1,000 of the North’s conventional artillery pieces. For America, the possibility of a nuclear attack on one of its garrisons in East Asia, or even on an American city. And don’t forget the danger of an armed confrontation between America and China, the North’s neighbour and grudging ally. It seems distasteful to mention the economic effects of another Korean war, but they would of course be awful, too.

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Aug 9, 2017

Gold Prices Spike As People Freak Out About Nuclear War

Posted by in categories: existential risks, finance, government, military

Gold climbed to the highest since mid-June, pushing up mining-company shares amid military tensions between the U.S. and North Korea.

Equities slid and the Swiss franc and some developed-market government bonds advanced as President Donald Trump threatened North Korea with “fire and fury” following a series of missile tests by the communist regime, boosting demand for haven assets. Gold also climbed after Indian imports of the metal were said to have doubled.

The U.S. North-Korea tensions add to investor angst that has helped push up gold more than 10 percent this year, even with equities hitting records and the Federal Reserve keen to shrink its balance sheet. Should geopolitical tensions intensify, gold is likely to be in demand as a safe-haven, according to analysts at Commerzbank AG.

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Aug 8, 2017

Cancer Care in the Future

Posted by in categories: biological, complex systems, disruptive technology, environmental, existential risks, health, homo sapiens, science

The future of cancer care should mean more cost-effective treatments, a greater focus on prevention, and a new mindset: A Surgical Oncologist’s take

Multidisciplinary team management of many types of cancer has led to significant improvements in median and overall survival. Unfortunately, there are still other cancers which we have impacted little. In patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma and hepatocellular cancer, we have been able to improve median survival only by a matter of a few months, and at a cost of toxicity associated with the treatments. From the point of view of a surgical oncologist, I believe there will be rapid advances over the next several decades.

Robotic Surgery

There is already one surgery robot system on the market and another will soon be available. The advances in robotics and imaging have allowed for improved 3-dimensional spacial recognition of anatomy, and the range of movement of instruments will continue to improve. Real-time haptic feedback may become possible with enhanced neural network systems. It is already possible to perform some operations with greater facility, such as very low sphincter-sparing operations for rectal adenocarcinoma in patients who previously would have required a permanent colostomy. As surgeons’ ability and experience with new robotic equipment becomes greater, the number and types of operation performed will increase and patient recovery time, length of hospital stay, and return to full functional status will improve. Competition may drive down the exorbitant cost of current equipment.

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Aug 1, 2017

The Scary AI Revolution Will Decimate Jobs and Might Cause World War III: Jack Ma

Posted by in categories: employment, existential risks, internet, robotics/AI

Jack Ma, founder of Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba and one of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, says he worries about the scary Artificial Intelligence revolution. Artificial Intelligence could decimate middle-class jobs and might cause World War III, but it could also be the opportunities to build new companies and change the current status quo of Africa. He believes that AI will be smarter than human and in the future we will make robot more like human.

He spoke to young African at the University of Nairobi and encourage African Entrepreneurs “When I arrived, I found the internet speed in Kenya is faster than in United states, and you will build even better infrastructure and build the future of Africa because entrepreneurship is the best philanthropy to help the society.”

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Jul 20, 2017

Dear Mum: A Letter from the future

Posted by in categories: economics, existential risks, food, futurism, government

Dear Mum,

We’ve missed you over the ten long years since you passed away. You wanted me to write to you to tell you what’s happened, so now in 2030 I am fulfilling that wish.

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