I haven’t until now stepped in to write an introduction but in this moment find myself compelled to.
When two of our brightest come together to forge a brand new venture it deserves our attention. Eric Van der Kleij, original creator of London’s much lauded Level 39 in Canary Wharf, has joined Daniel Doll-Steinberg, co-Founder and driving force of the original Atari Token, creating a team whose previous ecosystems have supported companies to grow from startups to over $10’s billions dollar in market cap in just a few years. The result is their next generation ecosystem which they call EdenBase. At this point I will hand the narrative over so we can hear their philosophy from them in their own words.
EdenBase is an optimised environment supporting supergrowth for the next set of Game Changers starting here in London, where it aims to analyse the potential impact of implementing frontier technologies in promising startups. Followed with the investment of capital, knowledge, technology they provide the ecosystem and environment to transform high potential startups to achieve their potential.
When exploring the impact of major change, we believe that correct terminology is important, otherwise we may find it difficult to come up with the right answers for the challenges we face. We therefore believe The “Cognitive Revolution” is a much more accurate way to describe what others call the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Why? Because computers are fast replicating our cognitive functions and potentially becoming sentient, which will dramatically impact productivity, and equally dramatically impact society. Frontier technology enabled computers have potential benefits as well as threats for humans, but – it is clear that we are not yet ready for them. And in order to survive and succeed we have to address implementation and education with similar urgency as we are with COVID. In this article we skim the surface of this urgency, and how we should deal with it.
We are in the midst of a world changing revolution that in nine years could add an economy the size of China to the global economy and simultaneously displace one billion jobs! PWC and McKinsey have respectively estimated just that, and that by 2030 just the Artificial Intelligence component of frontier technologies – which also include Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality , Blockchain, Communications such as 5G and soon 6G, Decentralisation, Cryptocurrency & Tokenisation, Internet of Things and Robotics & Automation – will be almost a $16 trillion market and could replace up to thirty percent of the global hours worked by 2030.
To put these numbers in perspective the COVID worldwide lockdowns so far are estimated to have temporarily cost the global economy four percent of GDP, or around $4.6 trillion, according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), and “furloughed” four hundred million jobs.
One of the biggest changes society faces is also the possibility – some say inevitability that the computer actually becomes sentient, in some form – an event called the Singularity – and this presents even more significant questions and concerns. Computer power has been doubling every two years (which is thirty two times every decade and a mind boggling thousand times every twenty years) so it is not inconceivable that it might not be too long before computers enabled with frontier technologies become sentient systems and are more capable than humans. We are already close to an age where robotic systems can be better drivers (or pilots or surgeons etc.) than the biologically limited humans they are replacing.
Alan Turing in his 1950 paper started imagining a world transformed by machines that could actually think. He wrote: “We may hope that machines will eventually compete with men in all purely intellectual fields”. He foresaw that such computers could win the “imitation game” whereby a person talking to a computer would think they were interacting with another person. Something we now call a Turing Test. No computer has quite succeeded in this yet but they are getting closer every day, for example OpenAI’s GPT-3, which uses deep-learning can produce remarkably human-like text on a given topic. Even poetry!
We believe we are fast entering an entirely new age: powered by the Cognitive Revolution. And we are only just beginning to comprehend it, and how to employ it wisely.
There seem to us to be four main prospects for humanity with the reality of sentient computers. Three of these are not so good for us and only one is positive. They are: the Terminator future, the Apathetic future, and the two Altruistic futures.
The Terminator future, named after the movie, sees sentient computers attempting to wipe out humanity as an inferior competitor. Such a computer has no empathy just intellect. Suffice it to say, this is a pretty hellish future for us, and therefore we must strive to ensure the encoding of the most positive of the human-like attributes in our frontier technology models. The Apathetic future is one where humanity is just not that important to sentient computers. The computer has intellect and maybe empathy, just no empathy for us. In such a scenario, say, the computer might consider Earth a better place with an environment – with far less Oxygen in the atmosphere or twenty degrees hotter or colder – in which humans just cannot survive. Once again the ethical custodianship of the deep learning models need to include empathy in order to prevent such scenarios.
And then there are the Altruistic futures. These are where sentient computers care for humanity and set out to protect us and ensure we thrive – trying to achieve a human Nirvana.
It’s easy to imagine what the worst of the scenarios might look like, using the current pandemic as an example, with Governments attempting to implement actions for their view of the good of society leading to lockdowns and damage to many livelihoods and futures. Such a recommendation or decision could say have been made by a sentient computer believing it is in humanity’s best interest to keep everyone safe and happy all the time by locking us down and even going so far as administering psychotic drugs.
This leaves us with the only positive outcome for us. The alternative where this sentient altruistic computer looks after humanity by allowing us to thrive whilst taking the burdens, strain and drudgery of providing for our basic needs.
That is why we absolutely must be considering and planning for the frontier technology powered future right now. We need to work hard to ensure we empower the machines and models to achieve the right outcomes, and a significantly more relevant education is a crucial pillar in society achieving that goal, and we will be sharing more of that in the future.
The reality of the above, and the availability of far more capable productivity-enhancing technologies that have ever existed before is why we decided to announce our new ecosystem and hub EdenBase with an investment competition to identify promising startups to join our transformative community that will help achieve responsible supergrowth, while ensuring delivery of the SDG’s. We believe it could be terminal to not do so, and have made it core to our values and investing thesis. Please join us!
For further information visit https://edenbase.com