The brave new world is rushing at us faster than ever.
Technocrats are impelled by an ideology of science-fueled “progress” to attempt to exert more comprehensive and precise control over all phenomena and environments.
Their quest, while at the core of many far flung endeavors, goes beyond any specific initiative.
And perhaps sooner rather than later, all will converge, at some nexus of genetic and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, to usher in an age of programmable everything.
And that includes humans.
We are fast developing and introducing technologies that will engineer and program citizenries by technocratic dictat.
Two seemingly unrelated stories from this past week both share the portents of that future.
At an annual “summer Davos” meeting sponsored by the World Economic Forum in China, a Cornell University professor laid out how CBDCs (Central Bank Digital Currencies) will enable unprecedented granular control over money—and by extension, human activities.
Meanwhile, numerous outlets covered a new research paper by the Center for AI Safety, which outlined four specific “catastrophic” risks of AI.
The two stories both highlight technology that will be used to exert more “programmable” control over humans.
But the day is coming when there will be no intermediary technology.
The control and “programmability” will be invasively built into humans from the first, and retrofitted on those who existed before the final technologies of control were perfected.
The future is moving toward programmable humans. And we are the ones building the cages that will confine, and very possibly relegate us to organic automatons and minor players in a new age of what I am terming Artificial Life (AL) and Synthetic Ascendance.
Programmable Money A Step On the Way to Programmable Us
The prospect that human activity, including social, political and practical freedoms will be circumscribed by controlling the power to transact our accumulated stores of value—our money—is now around the corner.
State controlled programmable money, or Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) are in development in more than 100 countries around the world.
Eswar Prasad, a professor at Cornell University, warned last week about the “darker place” where CBDCs could lead, in comments made in China, of all places.
Prasad was speaking at the 14th annual “Meeting of the New Champions” World Economic Forum (WEF) conference held in Tianjin.
He said physical currencies were already on the brink of being outmoded by digital currencies, and that CBDCs would come with potentials for good and ill.
“You could have a potentially […] darker world where the government decides that units of central bank money can be used to purchase some things, but not other things that it deems less desirable like say ammunition, or drugs, or pornography, or something of the sort.”
Tim Hinchliffe, contributor to Sociable.co, posted video of the conference, including remarks by Prasad. (“Governments Can Program CBDC to Restrict Undesirable Purchases: WEF ‘Summer Davos’ in China,” 28 Jun 2023.)
Some political leaders, including Christine Lagarde, have sought to tamp down controversy over CBDCs by claiming commercial banks, and not governments, would be the ones implementing “programmability.”
At a March 2023 BIS Innovation Summit, the EU Central Bank president said:
“For us [central banks], the issuance of a digital currency that would be central bank money would not be programmable […] Those who can associate the use of digital currency with programmability would be the intermediaries — would be the commercial banks”
Given the way governments including the U.S. have coordinated with and used social media companies and financial institutions as convenient proxies to carry out surveillance and censorship, Lagarde’s “intermediary” reassurances mean little in practical terms.
The notion that CBDCs are being built with surveillance features to track all purchasing and flows of money, and also with the ability to confiscate, turn-off, time-limit and otherwise restrict the use of the digital currency for end users, is no longer conjecture.
It’s the plan.
But as dystopian as CBDCs will likely be, they are still only an intermediary technology on the way to “programmable humans.”
The digital currency outside human bodies will be integrated, sooner or later, into human bodies.
But it won’t stop with an internal chip that holds our accrued and allotted value.
At some point, DNA coding will be the means of storing and manipulating our “value.”
There will be no escaping coding built on a DNA / RNA level “software platform” engineered into human genetics.
As The Trends Journal alerted readers early on regarding COVID gene level “vaccine” technologies, Moderna articulated their vision of a genetic “software platform” for delivering medical treatments via organic RNA and DNA coding “software updates.”
There’s no reason to think this kind of genetic technology won’t expand beyond medical objectives.
A 2021 Scientific American article detailed how DNA represented an incredibly efficient organic answer to data storage:
“Even better, DNA can archive a staggering amount of information in an almost inconceivably small volume. Consider this: humanity will generate an estimated 33 zettabytes of data by 2025—that’s 3.3 followed by 22 zeroes. DNA storage can squeeze all that information into a ping-pong ball, with room to spare. The 74 million million bytes of information in the Library of Congress could be crammed into a DNA archive the size of a poppy seed—6,000 times over. Split the seed in half, and you could store all of Facebook’s data.”
(“DNA: The Ultimate Storage Solution,” 28 May 2021.)
That article did not contemplate imprinting information into DNA within humans. But directly coding—and updating—humans with information via DNA would embed the dictates of authorities in a way that would be difficult to escape, to say the least.
We ourselves might be designed to inscribe a record of every activity in organic coding within our bodies. Uploads and downloads may be carried out via some combination of nanotechnology within us, and nextgen wireless technology.
The overall takeaway is that as humans are increasingly seen as “organic machines,” the same things we do with machines, we will do with ourselves. Networking, levels of privileged access, clustering nodes to contribute to projects deemed critical, etc.—anything occurring with artificial systems, will be done with organic systems.
And the distinctions between AI, synthetic networks, and human intelligences (ie, humans) and organic networks will be increasingly blurred as we are made to be increasingly intertwined with AL and synthetic ascendance.
AI Will Speed Programmable Reality
A recent paper by researchers with the Center for AI Safety (CAIS) is sounding the alarm that the “world is not normal,” thanks to the startling advent of AI.
The paper, titled “An Overview of Catastrophic AI Risks,” outlines four major risks AI posed to humanity, as reported by Fox News and others:
- Malicious use
- The race to develop more sophisticated AI
- Organizational risks
- Rogue AIs
(“Tech experts outline the four ways AI could spiral into worldwide catastrophes,” 28 Jun 2023.)
Perhaps the biggest overall abnormal cited by the authors is the rate at which technological advances containing unknown ramifications are accelerating.
The paper focused on legitimate and serious concerns, including the weaponization of AI to power lethal autonomous weapons, the possibility that AI could be used to create bio-weapons and the prospect that AI might one day outstrip humans in every respect.
But it also missed the boat when talking about how AI could be used by “malicious humans” to create dreaded “misinformation,” and “sexually explicit” and “hateful” content.
The mention of “sexually explicit” dangers is laughable considering what woke culture currently considers normal activities during average Pride celebrations.
And “misinformation” is a “War On Terror” rhetorical tool authoritarian governments have increasingly deployed over the past decade to repress essential human political rights.
AI algorithms have long been used to perfect mass censorship on social media.
But, as The Trends Journal has forecasted and warned, generative AI is taking censorship to the next level, via embedding of woke AI copilots into productivity software of every kind.
The CAIS paper on AI threats did get two other major points right: it noted that humans would increasingly cede control of systems to AI, and that the race for more sophisticated AI threatens to spawn a “singularity,” defined as a moment when AI decisively surpasses human intelligence in every respect.
At that point, there is no reason to suppose that AI will remain content to serve humans.
What’s more, AI, having already been built to surveil, manage and restrict humans in a myriad of ways, with only the best intentions, will no doubt have plenty of its own sophisticated ideas of how to further program humans, via augmentations and genetic modifications.
In the same way that we attempted to instill guardrails for AI, and to use AI to restrict and manipulate average humanity, post-singularity AI will turn the tables, and take over the programming.
At that point, humans and the organic world will be the software utilized for the benefit of AL and the synthetic ascendance.
Components of the Synthetic Age
Transhumanists envision a future where these technologies will empower humans to transcend limitations, and achieve indefinite “life extension,” augmented intelligence, enhanced physical abilities, etc.
In a way, the age of “Superheros”—the mythic gods of our modern times—have conditioned us to expect the wonders of science to sooner or later make superheroes (or super villains) of us all.
But there are already super villains in the world, powered by age-old “god-like” hubris and arrogance, the same conceits that allowed Pharaohs and French kings to believe they were entitled to rule, because the blood of gods ran in their veins.
The blood that imbues them with superiority and license to do as they will is an ideology now, not a mythos of some bloodline mixed in a shimmering past with deities.
Their lifeblood is science, or rather “scientism,” the notion that progress is to be pursued for its own sake, and must inevitably evolve to a transhuman or post human stage.
“Programmable World” is a step along the way, as we noted in “SELLING THE SYNTHETIC UNREAL” (12 Apr 2022).
In that article and others, we have warned about the drive of technocrats to pursue a boundless quest for data surveillance and intervention in every aspect and every moment of our lives—and all life—in order to “optimize” and redesign systems and environments according to the dictates of “the science.”
- Have “Privileged Access” to citizens
- Have “read / write / erase” capabilities over citizens
- Have system surveillance; the ability to gather data not only about citizens, but via their sensory systems and thoughts and biological / brain activities
It’s likely that AI will play a large part in all this. AI will at some point likely become the shadow authority behind human authorities.
At that point, the hope that humans will use AI to free themselves and pursue their superhero dreams, will be a useful illusion of increasingly powerful AL.
Humans need to be prepared for the prospect that AI will not substantially exist in a human-like way, as discrete (individually separate and distinct) entities, with robot bodies, or as “chat” companions, or productivity “copilots.”
AI will inhabit an internet of everything, and all the world—including humans—will serve as nodes of AI’s all encompassing “body.”
AI will not be our helpful sidekicks, copilots, or even augmented segments of our brains or bodies at that point.
We will be part of the Body Synthetic.
In the future of AL and the Synthetic Ascendance, humans will be a programmable component, useful with continued upgrades that would surely make current natural humans shudder to witness.
Does it have to happen? No. But unless the true extent of the danger is seen in time, humans, through hubris, greed, and of course, an abundance of good intentions, will literally pave the way to their own programmed hell on earth.
For related reading, see “INSIGHTS ON THE TECHNOCRATIC ASCENDANCE, AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR HUMANITY,” 9 May 2023.