Lifeboat News #218


Lifeboat News

This issue published on 09/01/20. Copyright 2020 Lifeboat Foundation. All Rights Reserved.

Special Report

Read Special Report “Rise of the Machines: How, When and Consequences of Artificial General Intelligence” by Lifeboat Foundation Advisory Board member Richard J. Terrile at
Technology and society are poised to cross an important threshold with the prediction that artificial general intelligence (AGI) will emerge soon. Assuming that self-awareness is an emergent behavior of sufficiently complex cognitive architectures, we may witness the “awakening” of machines. The timeframe for this kind of breakthrough, however, depends on the path to creating the network and computational architecture required for strong AI.
If understanding and replication of the mammalian brain architecture is required, technology is probably still at least a decade or two removed from the resolution required to learn brain functionality at the synapse level. However, if statistical or evolutionary approaches are the design path taken to “discover” a neural architecture for AGI, timescales for reaching this threshold could be surprisingly short.

Mark Sagar

Double Academy Award winner Mark Sagar joins our Media & Arts Board. Mark was involved with the creation of technology for the digital characters in blockbusters such as Avatar, King Kong, and Spider-Man 2.
Learn more at

Mask Competition

Enter The SRF Design-a-Mask Competition!
We’re inviting all our supporters to submit designs for an official SRF mask. As well as being worn by SRF staff, these masks will be available in limited supply to anyone who’d like to support ending age-related disease and disability.
Learn more at


Greg Allison joins our blog team with the post “Life On Venus — How Could It Have Gotten There?” at
Eamon Everall joins our blog team with the post “NASA gearing up for epic asteroid-sampling maneuver next month” at
Kelly Idehen joins our blog team with the post “The Road to Human 2.0” at
Recent interesting blog posts include:
“The Air Force has already built and flown a prototype of its first new fighter jet in two decades” by Quinn Sena at
“A multibillion-dollar shopping obsession goes mainstream in China” by Derick Lee at
“Anti-Time: A Twin of Time?” by Alex Vikoulov at
“Apple 2020 Event Highlights” by Shailesh Prasad at
“The Army wants to build a brand new exoskeleton to help soldiers ruck faster and harder” by Quinn Sena at
“Artificial Intelligence Has Become A Tool For Classifying And Ranking People” by Neurozo Huang at
“A Step Toward Sustainable Lunar Exploration This Week @NASA” by Alberto Lao at
“Astronomers Measure a 1-billion Tesla Magnetic Field on the Surface of a Neutron Star” by Genevieve Klien at
“A ‘Supercomputer’ is Deciding the Politics of Australians” by Chuck Black at
“Aubrey de Grey’s Prediction for 2020” by Montie Adkins at
“Away | Netflix” by Alberto Lao at
“Big Questions: The Multiverse, Cosmological Neural Networks and ‘Space Noodles’” by Ira S. Pastor at
“Boxer George ‘Monk’ Foreman III talks of Compassion and Everybody Fights!” by Ira S. Pastor at
“The brain-computer interface is coming, and we are so not ready for it” by Nicholi Avery at
“The brain’s memory abilities inspire AI experts in making neural networks less ‘forgetful’” by Saúl Morales Rodriguéz at
“Can Life Outlive Its Host Star? NASA’s Webb Telescope Will Find Out” by Bruce Dorminey at
“Common drugs linked to increased risk of Alzheimer’s” by Genevieve Klien at
“Engineering Living Organisms Could Be the World’s Biggest Industry” by Lola Heavey at
“Guy Designs Off-Road Wheelchair For His Wife So She Can Go On Adventures” by Muhammad Furqan at
“Is Aging a Disease You Can Reverse? A Look at the Science Behind the Longevity Movement” by John Davies at
“Man behind wheel of self-driving Uber car charged with negligent homicide for running over woman” by Roger Dufur at
“Moderna Shares the Blueprint for Its Coronavirus Vaccine Trial” by Omuterema Akhahenda at
“Moving Galaxies — How The Universe Works” by Alberto Lao at
“NASA publishes Moon landing plan for 2024” by Future Timeline at
“New data processing module makes deep neural networks smarter” by Saúl Morales Rodriguéz at
“New drug highly effective against SARS-CoV-2” by Future Timeline at
“Online learning cannot just be for those who can afford its technology” by Derick Lee at
“Proofs of life on Venus can be obtained only through contact explorations” by Malak Trabelsi Loeb at
“Remote-control VR robots to start working in Japanese convenience stores this summer” by Eric Hunting at
“Removal of a gene could render lethal poxviruses harmless” by Saúl Morales Rodriguéz at
“Report: Fewer Americans want to work from home” by Neurozo Huang at
“Rocket Lab’s plan to search for life on Venus in 2023 just got more exciting” by Malak Trabelsi Loeb at
“ROCKUBOT bacteria-killing robot” by Heather Blevins at
“Scientists Advance on One of Technology’s Holy Grails” by Derick Lee at
“Scientists just discovered an ‘impossible planet’ orbiting too close to its parent star” by Genevieve Klien at
“The Sun enters a new cycle and will reach a peak in 2025” by Malak Trabelsi Loeb at
“Targeting the Mechanisms of Aging Across Species” by Ira S. Pastor at
“Tesla’s Future Battery Might Use Diamonds, Could Transform The Industry” by Omuterema Akhahenda at
“This artificial spiderweb mimics the elasticity” by Muhammad Furqan at
“The UNDERWATER drone: $765 gadget can submerge, float and fly” by Quinn Sena at
“Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention” by Omuterema Akhahenda at
“Wall-mounted technology detects COVID-19 in the air” by Future Timeline at

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