I did not sleep well last night, but I did read a bunch of interesting papers about the fascinating scientific work of Lynn Margulis. One short paper, Vernor Vinge's "The Coming Technological Singularity," which did not have much to say about Margulis or her endosymbiotic theory, did, however, contain an interesting point concerning a subject that rarely enters my mind: artificial intelligence...

IA is Intelligence Amplification. The point that caught my interest, and a point that is related to my position on space travel and colonization, is this: Focus should be placed on enhancing what life has already made, human intelligence, and not in making something that imitates or approximates the biological processes of thought—a robot that is more human than human, a dead machine that thinks like a living mind. Similarly, we should focus on geoengineering and not space exploration. Enhancing this world, a world which has already been prepared for life by life, is a stronger idea for the future than looking for (and figuring out how to move to) one that might support life.

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