Humans aren't Necessarily the Pinnacle of Evoution

We overestimate our own intelligence and role in the universe, says philosopher and debater Nikola Danaylov. He claims that viruses and bacteria on certain parameters are smarter than humans.

"The idea is that we are the smartest species on the planet because we are the most intelligent. But that's not exactly true". 

There is a lot to talk about artificial intelligence in the upcoming years. And the question of whether the technology has the potential to become as intelligent as man is among the most discussed. Tech writer and debutist Nikola Danaylov runs the Singularity Weblog blog, discussing artificial intelligence with the world's foremost thinkers in the field. He says that so far he has not seen anything that suggests that it is impossible possible to create artificial intelligence at the level of the human. Among other things, we are basically just biological beings and maybe not as extraordinary and unique as we think.

To illustrate his claim, as a thought experiment, he places a wise professor - we speak the Albert Einstein -type - on a deserted island with a monkey, cockroach and rat and asks the question who has the best chance to survive?

"It's not the person - the academic, who is supposedly the wiser and with an incredible IQ. However, it is perhaps the cockroach that has the greatest chance of survival. Then follow the rat and then maybe the primate. Man may have the least chance of survival, "said Nikola Danaylov.

Bacteria will outlive us

One thing is burden-proof surrender like cockroaches. Nikola Danaylov also maintains that both bacteria and viruses have been on Earth for a much longer period than humanity. If we end up in a nuclear war, it's probably viruses and bacteria that will survive while we won’t.

"The idea that we are the pinnacle of evolution does not stand scrutiny from a biological, genetic or intellectual point of view, "he says.

Nikola Danaylov believes that although the individual bacterium does not have an intelligence like humanity, they are overall more adaptive. They have been here longer than us, and they are likely to survive us too.

According to Nikola Danaylov, intelligence is the ability to solve difficult problems. Survival is the hardest problem in biology, so now that bacteria have survived the dinosaurs and have been far beyond us and they have better chances of survival in the longer term than us - who is so clever, he asks.

"I'm not saying necessarily that bacteria is smarter than us. All I'm saying is that I want to question the predominant wisdom, that we usually have that makes us this kind of uniquely, exclusive supreme being," Nikola Danaylov says. 

Nikola Danaylov will host IDA on November 6th. There are still a few available seats for the event