The attached article is an excerpt of the book New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics published in 2010 by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. It summarizes the vision for astronomy and astrophysics, as well as explain the methodologies that are being used in studying the complexities of the universe. This article is a good reference for those who have recently discovered astrophysics and are struggling to understand its various concepts and ideas.
Implications for AI
Nine years since its publication, much of the predictions laid out by this book has already been achieved. We have, to date, at least 11 billion exoplanets are believed to be orbiting a sun-like star, and are possibly habitable. Yet, despite these discoveries, we have not yet come across other life forms in the known universe, nor have we found any evidence of their existence.
This brings us to two very important insights. On one hand, it strengthens the uniqueness of this earth, and the preciousness of all life within it. On the other, these discoveries mirrors the questions we have had of the mind: how can a planet as small as the earth, create a life form that can develop the capacity to peer into deep space? How can the brain, being what materialists believe as the seat of intelligence, enable humans to develop this kind of capacity?
As transhumanists prepare for a dying earth by creating a new body that will not be destroyed, or by searching for another planet that can host life, here at Fully Human, we prepare for the renewal of the earth, and the birth of a new human.
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