UFO Conjectures

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Are AI [Artificial Intelligent] agents/aliens visiting Earth via or as UFOs?

Copyright 2016 InterAmerica Inc.

Polymath Ray Kurzweil, in several books and articles, ongoing, has, postulated that alien “species” in the form of AI artifacts may have visited or are visiting this planet.

Delegates from Faraway Places:

Our popular contemporary vision of visits from other planets in the Universe contemplates creatures like ourselves with spaceships and other advanced technologies assisting them. In some conceptions the aliens have a remarkably humanlike appearance. In others, they look a little strange …

… visits from intelligent entities from another planet represent a merger of an evolved intelligent species with its even more evolved intelligent computational technology …

A computational-based superintelligence of the late twenty-first century here on Earth will be microscopic in size. Thus an intelligent delegation from another planet is not likely to use a spaceship of the size that is common in today’s science fiction … Consider that the purpose of such a visit is not likely to be the mining of material resources since such an advanced civilization has almost certainly passed beyond the point where it any significant material needs … The only likely purpose of such a visit is for observation and the gathering of information. The only resource of interest to such an advanced civilization will be knowledge …” [Pages 257-258, The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence, Penguin Books, NY, 1999]

(Mr. Kurzweil has elaborated on and expanded his view is subsequent books, The Singularity is Near (2005), How To Create a Mind (2013), et cetera which I’ll be bring to this place upcoming).

Wikipedia’s “bio” of Mr. Kurzweil:

The view that advanced civilizations outside the Earth would evolve similarly to how civilizations have evolved here is gilding the extraterrestrial lily as I see it.

Darwin’s evolutionary theories apply to Earth (only) and is thus a unique proposition.

That is, the vicissitudes of this planet do not and cannot be found elsewhere in the Universe (except by sheer chance which the odds are against, unless one posits that God is the creator of all things; an idea that is not irrational, by the way….but that for another time).

Evolutionary thrusts and the struggle(s) for survival can only apply to this planet; they’d be entirely different elsewhere, where geology, atmosphere, exotic species, and other unique elements intrude.

Technology arose here, not symbiotically, but from the creative minds of men like Babbage, Turing, for computers (which is Mr. Kurzweil’s AI thrust pretty much) and all the men and women who provided thought and effort to make machines,

That such “persons” would arise on another planet is an imaginative stretch that boggles the mind.

Nonetheless, I like the idea that UFOs are vehicles or entities with an AI essence.

(Many UFO sightings in the literature bespeak an AI patina (which I’ve recounted earlier here and will recap when I finish Mr. Bostrom’s upcoming book, Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies.)

If an advanced species ended up creating machines that replaced them, one can imagine that the self-replicating, intelligent machines might strike out to search the Galaxy or Universe for like “machines” or intelligences as their own.

Curiosity would not be foreign to an AI species (if I understand Mr. Kurzweil correctly).

If that isn’t amenable to you, how about advanced AI machines from our future?

Machines so advanced as to think and create/maintain themselves would surely, after a spate of time (millions of years or more), have come to understand and control time.

A visit to the past would, like extraterrestrial convoys, would not be a forbidden or undesired foray by any thinking species, AI or otherwise.

The Bostrom book will be published in May and the several Kurzweil books (and others in the AI genre) are tough to digest for one with meager intellectual abilities, like me, but I’ll be giving the topic a going-over, as it does seem to be a possible UFO explanation.

After all, no other explanation stands out.



  • Well, you sure cover a lot a ground here. That AI visitations would be a reasonable event to expect is indeed interesting -and makes sense, if a civilization becomes able to produce AI at a singularity level (as we supposedly now approach) then replication/self replication presents the new level of exploration.

    But you suggest:

    "I think the AI Darwin’s evolutionary theories apply to Earth (only) and is thus a unique proposition."


    "That is, the vicissitudes of this planet do not and cannot be found elsewhere in the Universe..."

    And a few others. I believe that Darwinian -and other developmental aspects we've had are now a given in the mathematical sense and could easily be expected elsewhere not to suggest any great similarities -unless we go back into intelligent design... -but that evolutionary progression is a reality can't be now denied. It happened, so its more than possible in the Descartian path.

    The only problem with AI probes is that old "So where are they?"


    By Blogger Bryan Daum, at Thursday, February 18, 2016  

  • Bryan:

    They have been here and are here (somewhat nowadays) but so brilliant that they've eluded us, Roswell notwithstanding.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, February 18, 2016  

  • I keep seeing the 'paranormal' and the interpretation of UFO reports as somewhat of a Rorschach image. We project ourselves onto them and can only interact within the terms available to our understanding and our psychology. We have the NICAP guys with their military, post-war backgrounds seeing the reports as nuts n bolts. We have the more esoteric Hynek and Vallee seeing metaterrestrials and latterly data streams. The spiritualists see spirit avatars and saviours whilst the Old Testament geezers see demons.

    Irony Ahead!

    The AI explanation therefore must be equally as reflective to us whilst we exist in a time where AI is the cutting edge. The irony is that I too favour it as being more likely than the others. We must ask ourselves if we've arrived at the notion through mental sweat or because we're simply expressing our cultures?

    The reason I like it is because some of my unspoken ideas are supported by an AI presence. Also because AI isn't as thwarted by the 'space is big' conundrum or the 'Great Silence' mystery. Likewise, the mythical '90 degree turns' wouldn't be as problematic to a technological solid as they might be to a container holding biological entities. Of course, I'd prefer a few steps further along than steampunk AI where we might one day find biological intelligence. By that I mean the point in time where perhaps consciousness can be mapped across a technological construct and thereby achieve near immortality. By that point, the normal, rational behaviour of such an advanced intelligence might appear baffling to us airbreathers.

    As we must, I should add that I'm not committed to the AI idea and like to hold several diverse ideas at once. For example, the null hypothesis is not without merit either.

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Saturday, February 20, 2016  

  • Kandinsky wrote:

    "I keep seeing the 'paranormal' and the interpretation of UFO reports as somewhat of a Rorschach image."

    This is a very poor, non-informative and problematic assertion that help us nothing regarding the explanation of the UFO phenomenon. Yes problematic, given that the Rorschach images paradigm is bullshit. Every person I know, when was tested by the Rorcharch in order to try for a job, told me they avoided to mention they were seeing the black insect or spider, or the witch, etc. The
    Rorschach test is basically worthless pseudoscience.

    "As we must, I should add that I'm not committed to the AI idea and like to hold several diverse ideas at once. For example, the null hypothesis is not without merit either."

    The null hypothesis? Naaaah, just a "rorscharchian" projection from people with fear of the unknown, etc. Hey! see how rorscharchian deductions are easy?

    By Blogger Don Maor, at Sunday, February 21, 2016  

  • I have to agree with Don here, about the "null hypothesis."

    It provides an intellectual carapace over a topic, when quantum theory (or even some of Jung's musings) disallow the restrictions of null hypotheticals.

    Zoam Chomsky likes the null hypothesis, and seems married to it, for everything.

    But it (the null hypothesis) is a lot of hooey.

    Now, the Rorschach, the is open to discussion, for me. It's a tool, useful for ferreting out elements of the unconscious mind, and useful for psychotherapy. (I think Tim Hebert might agree.)


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, February 21, 2016  

  • Jeez Don, if I'd known the audience was so literal I would have used a different turn of phrase. But sure, thanks, I appreciate your digression into how you feel about Rorschach tests.

    I was attempting to convey my opinion that people see what they want to see. The UFO sightings reports are so saturated in ambiguity that just about anyone can trowel in their own explanations. That includes me, you and anyone else.

    Nice to meet you.

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Sunday, February 21, 2016  

  • RR says, "the 'null hypothesis' provides an intellectual carapace over a topic"

    Right you are, Rich, because the Null hypothesis of "UFO" reports and the PSH encapsulate a space-age pseudoscience composed of innumerable fantastic but utterly inconsequential anecdotes and frivolous claims: the ETH; interdimensional entities; space animals; ultraterrestrials; AI probes; etc.

    The Null and Psychosocial hypotheses are testable, falsifiable, theories about the entire catalogue of "UFO" reports and the complete history of the "UFO" myth and delusion.

    The Null and PSH don't care what part of the elephant one is touching, until one can demonstrate with veracious evidence, facts and reason, that some part of the elephant is true--by the modern Scientific method, the rules of evidence, and the principle of parsimony--the elephant does NOT exist!

    The Null hypothesis--the fact that there are no real "UFOs"--requires the PSH; if there were real "UFOs" of any kind, the PSH of reports would not be necessary.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Monday, February 22, 2016  

  • Thank you Zoam.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, February 22, 2016  

  • "The null hypothesis? just a projection from people with fear of the unknown"

    Talk about projection, poor Don's afraid his space brothers will never show up.

    Your upside-down excuses are worthless, Don. It's like saying "Scientists are afraid of discovering ET." We're heard such worthless nonsense for decades.


    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Monday, February 22, 2016  

  • I learned about the "null hypothesis" when studied statistics in the university. It was a statistical procedure to know whether a statistical phenomenon fitted some probabilistic distribution. Zoamey elevates it to the level of scientific law. It is bullshit. Zoamey does not even try to put some statistics to his own childish interpretation of the null hypothesis. On the other hand, great discoveries of science are much more than statistics. Certainly, Einstein, Newton or Archimedes were not thinking about the null hypothesis.

    By Blogger Don Maor, at Tuesday, February 23, 2016  

  • Don,

    I appreciate your educated disdain on Zoam's torrent of unwarranted and unsubstantiated criticisms. Well said.

    The truth of anomalous observations is that they are (can be) there but not yet (by definition) understood. It is, at best, not a projection but a reporting of what is being observed -beyond perhaps hypotheses of what might be to direct further consideration.

    Having said all that, undue projection is itself an easy error to be avoided as is raging blind denial.


    By Blogger Bryan Daum, at Wednesday, February 24, 2016  

  • Don & Bryan

    Over a century of assuming the answer (real UFOs exist) and making irrational excuses for why no real "UFOs" can be shown to exist has proven worthless.

    So now follow the scientific method and falsify the Null hypothesis. That is, produce EVIDENCE of real "UFOs." Show that there is more than media static.

    Let's have more than mere words if you want to be taken seriously. Otherwise, you're just lost and yammering inside the old "UFO" maze of mirrors and echoes.


    Don doesn't know what he's talking about as usual. We have innumerable "UFO" reports (statistics) and the Null (default) hypothesis; and the extraordinary (alternate) hypothesis has failed repeatedly. Comprende, Don?

    Bryan's "truth of anomalous observations" mumbo-jumbo is an excuse to accept "UFO" REPORTS at face value--when this has proven worthless--and appeal to ignorance simply to keep the dead "UFO" hypothesis under consideration. That's the definition of pseudoscience.

    Some people want to believe in the "UFO" myth, and so make excuses for holding false beliefs and practicing make-believe pseudoscience. This doesn't make them stupid, delusional or completely irrational. It simply means they have a certain enculturated blindness and set of irrational false beliefs about the world.

    You've been shown the way out of the "UFO" delusion, the choice is yours.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Wednesday, February 24, 2016  

  • zoamchumsky claimed:

    "Don doesn't know what he's talking about as usual. We have innumerable "UFO" reports (statistics) and the Null (default) hypothesis; and the extraordinary (alternate) hypothesis has failed repeatedly. Comprende, Don?"

    Oh, it has "failed repeteadly" just because you say so zoamey, is not it? Like your bogus meteors that travel horizontally for ever?

    By Blogger Don Maor, at Wednesday, February 24, 2016  

  • That the extraordinary (alternate) hypothesis has failed repeatedly is a fact in the world, Don, because, so far, there are no real "UFO" facts--no TRUE "UFOs."

    Believe otherwise? Present even one "UFO" fact; show us a real "UFO." You Can't!

    And you (DR's fool) obviously know as little about meteors as you know about the Null hypothesis: Nothing extraordinary is required to explain a common fireball "airship effect" report; one can never prove it was NOT a fireball; and even if one could, that wouldn't make it a spaceship, Sherlock!

    As with all Believer mumbo-jumbo, such folk "reasoning" is absurd.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Thursday, February 25, 2016  

  • Believers in the "UFO" myth irrationally accusing Scientific skeptics of "denial" should consider logic and the logic of language: One has to demonstrate the truth of the IDEA "UFO"--produce a real "UFO"--before a skeptic can deny its reality.

    Believer "logic" is upside-down, worthless wordplay and ad hominem as usual.

    People see things they can't identify, but that doesn't create some new unknown thing haunting the heavens. The media-manufactured misconception that it does is the origin of the "UFO" myth and delusion.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Thursday, February 25, 2016  

  • Zoam: the example about your bogus eternally horizontal-traveling meteor was just an example of the bogus explanations that irrational debunkers like you usually propose.

    The extraterrestrial hypothesis is naturally proposed from other cases in which extreme maneuvers are reported, or cases in which beings are reported in the surroundings of a landed UFOs, etc.

    You seem to be excessively irritated as of lately. Where is your cool?

    By Blogger Don Maor, at Thursday, February 25, 2016  

  • Nothing extraordinary about the fireball "airship effect" in "UFO" reporting. See the Condon Report, Chapter 2, 1968. It's only your straw-man "eternally horizontal-traveling meteor" that's bogus, since I said nothing of the sort. What do you think such nonsense gets you but derision?

    The ETH has always been and always will be the "least likely" reason that people make "UFO" reports. There's simply no connection between an ambiguous light in the sky and hypothetical ET, Don, except in peoples' minds, which are heavily influenced by images from popular culture. People report all manner of extraordinary things, very few if any bit of them are true. In fact, in thousands of reports, the most striking feature might be their entirely mundane sameness, and their immediate and usually laughably obvious precedents in media.

    It's the stunning lack of imagination that characterizes "UFO" reports and the entire myth. And it's revealing that your argument depends on those reports of extraordinary peripherals—"extreme maneuvers" and CE3—when you can’t even show that one simple thing—the subject—on which your would-be “evidences” rely—a simple “UFO” of any kind. This is much like the "fairy tale" effect in "UFO" reporting: some mythical fabulous evidence is not at hand but resides in never-neverland. And it will become available or apparent at a later time or in some greater reality. What a Hoot!

    But that’s the hallmark of pseudoscientific irrationality: Ignore the obvious and appeal to ignorance; ignore the facts that fireballs are common and that people in the 20th century commonly misinterpreted them as spaceships, then insist—against all reason and good sense—that maybe some reports were of visiting ET spaceships just the same just because you want to believe it. It’s ridiculous! But you can believe all the ridiculous things you like. It’s the proving them to the world that is difficult for you and other believers. It’s next to impossible in fact because it’s demonstrably NOT TRUE!

    Are you getting this, Don? Have your “seem” detector examined by a professional. It’s right next to your “cool” detector—which is obviously faulty or absent.

    Best, ZO

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Friday, February 26, 2016  

  • Zoam:

    You are wasting too much words. Write less and say more please.

    Yes, I tend to trust in the report of some witnesses of encounters of the third kind, or reports of UFOs making maneuvers and having shapeds that no aireplane or helicoptyer can do or match. I reasonably believe, that not everybody will be wrong or trying to hoax. I am NOT a paranoid (like you) who believes everyone wants to deceive me.

    By Blogger Don Maor, at Saturday, February 27, 2016  

  • I'm glad, fellows, that we've addressed the topic of this post: the possibility of Artificial Intelligence for UFOs.

    This makes me want to continue the charade of purpose for the blog.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, February 27, 2016  

  • Rich;

    As some posters have said, AI spacecraft as "UFOs" would simply be spacecraft.

    So where are they?

    AI spacecraft is certainly a valid idea, but conflated with the "UFO" idea, maybe not so much. But you're welcomed to it.


    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, February 27, 2016  

  • Don;

    You always whine when I've made solid objections to the ETH of "UFO" reports. Thank you! (g)

    Then you repeat your credulous belief that some purportedly extraordinary reports are true when they are easily explained.

    I don't think all witnesses are liars or trying to deceive me, I think they have deceived themselves.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, February 27, 2016  

  • I think it's time to move on, n'est ce pas?


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, February 27, 2016  

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