Saturday, February 14, 2009

Putting A Face on Machine Mutation

We brought up the evolution of intelligence and artificial intelligence a while back.

Last night's Battlestar Galactica exposed some of the history of the machine mutations, evolution if you will, which converts Cylons from the realm of machine toward the realm of humanity.

And they call it science fiction. Which is very strange, because the foundation of biological evolution, by necessity, is cosmology. First comes the universe of planets, stars, galaxies, then after that biological life forms.

Cosmology is an attempt to explain the foundational prerequisites for the transformation from machine entities to biological entities. The Big Bang theory is, in essence, about an event originally starting the evolution of machine entities.

In the cosmology movie the expanding and cooling gas cloud led to atoms. A gas cloud of hydrogen is a cloud of machines. An atom is a machine. An element is a machine composed of multiple atomic particles. Atomic components like protons, neutrons, and electrons led to atoms, which led to elements, which led to stars and planets. Bigger machines.

Looking at it that way, the machines are at the foundation of biological organisms aren't they? We are in a sense cyborg, then, because we are both machine and organism.

We are composed of atoms and elements which are organized in such a way that they morph into organisms. Organization.

So goes the cosmological theory of machines mutating into "higher forms". Atomic quanta which are composed of non-organic mass and non-organic energy, and therefore are machines, morph or evolve into other machines we call atoms and elements. Then those elements morph into molecules which morph or evolve into organic, biological life forms.

What is puzzling in many ways is that this is called both science fiction and evolutionary science. What makes it fiction on the one hand, but science on the other hand, on the same set of facts? By facts I mean machines morphing or evolving into biological organisms.

Is it the Hollywood movie aspect of Cylons that makes it science fiction, or is it fiction when the forum is outer space? But only on Earth it is science?

That is what Battlestar Galactica is all about. Cylons becoming more and more human-like to the point they become gender-based entities, they mate, and they thereby reproduce.

What is up with calling it fiction? Or science? Just because it is a movie? Hey, it is the science of Cylon evolution dudes and dudettes.

1 comment:

  1. Some scientists are excited at the prospect of making what could be called hybrid machine - life.