|Exam Name||:||Cisco Express Foundation for Field Engineers V 1.2|
|Questions and Answers||:||138 Q & A|
|Updated On||:||April 24, 2019|
|PDF Download Mirror||:||Pass4sure 642-383 Dump|
|Get Full Version||:||Pass4sure 642-383 Full Version|
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642-383 exam Dumps Source : Cisco Express Foundation for Field Engineers V 1.2
Test Code : 642-383
Test Name : Cisco Express Foundation for Field Engineers V 1.2
Vendor Name : Cisco
Q&A : 138 Real Questions
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Ian Campbell, CTO and exotic Engineer, should be keynote speaker with regards to Monetizing the instant network – The function of automation, cloud, segment routing, core, policy, and SON 2.0 in 5G success. additionally, Ian will participate on the Keynote Panel discussing vital next Steps in Deploying 5G.
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SAN MATEO, Calif., April 10, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cloudian, the leading object storage professional, today announced availability of a Cisco Validated Design (CVD) for Cloudian HyperStore on Cisco Unified Computing gadget (Cisco UCS) platform. The CVD displays the companies’ elevated collaboration in proposing premier-of-breed infrastructure options for modernizing enterprise information centers, together with accelerating the transition to hybrid cloud. Cisco customers will now be able to capitalize fully on Cloudian’s utility-described, limitlessly scalable and highly within your means storage that bridges public and private cloud environments.
As a CVD, the new Cloudian-Cisco answer has been designed, verified, and documented to facilitate faster, more respectable deployments of a storage cluster. as a result, clients in tremendously data-intensive industries such as media and leisure, video surveillance, healthcare and scientific research can extra without delay and easily lay the foundation for maximizing the cost of their digital belongings.
The Cloudian HyperStore architecture is specially designed for cloud infrastructures, with the business’s most desirable S3 compatibility, enabling seamless data administration throughout public and personal cloud environments. This pleasing integration additionally gives groups the flexibleness to make the most of distinct public cloud suppliers, thereby heading off seller lock-in. in addition to hybrid and multi-cloud information management, other HyperStore advantages encompass:
“Simplifying storage deployments, scaling out on demand and self-optimizing statistics management are key requirements in nowadays’s modern data center,” observed Siva Sivakumar, senior director, statistics middle options, at Cisco. “We appear forward to working with Cloudian to help our customers meet their evolving storage wants, leveraging HyperStore’s cloud-capable, enormously scalable and within your budget know-how.”
“The mixture of Cloudian’s trade-leading object storage application and Cisco’s storage-optimized compute platform gives an amazing foundation for a non-public or hybrid cloud infrastructure,” mentioned Jon Toor, chief marketing officer at Cloudian. “We’re excited about increasing our partnership with Cisco and presenting joint facts management solutions that allow purchasers to obtain their company or mission aims.”
For more counsel on the offering, consult with http://bit.ly/2EqCXbI_CiscoCVD.
About CloudianCloudian turns tips into perception with a hyperscale data fabric that lets consumers save, locate and offer protection to records throughout the organization and worldwide. Cloudian information management options carry cloud expertise and economics to the facts core with uncompromising statistics durability, intuitive administration tools and the business’s most compatible S3 API. Cloudian and its ecosystem partners aid global a thousand clients simplify unstructured records management these days while preparing for the information demands of AI and laptop discovering the following day. study more at www.cloudian.com.
Media ContactsJordan Tewell10Fold Communicationscloudian@10fold.com+1 415-666-6066
Bemi IdowuRed Lorry Yellow Lorrycloudian@rlyl.com+44 (0) 20 7403 8878
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The next hurdle is a difficult one. Facilities could be established in GEO orbit that would be quite useful in dealing with things in that neighborhood, like harvesting the zombiesats. However, there is a better destination a bit farther out at the Earth-Moon L-1 point. As can be noted in the diagram above, the delta-V (change in velocity) cost is less than that of going just from LEO to GEO. The delta-V cost of going from LEO to EML1, and then back down to GEO, is the same as a median delta-V from LEO straight to GEO. In the industry this little trick is known as a bi-elliptic transfer variant of a Hohmann trajectory. All values in the diagram come from Larson & Pranke’s Human Spaceflight: Mission Analysis & Design. Actual orbital trajectories have so many variables that these should be seen as illustrative, rather than exact, values.
Staging from EML1 offers a multitude of advantages that more than overcome the difficulties of getting set up there. One of the perhaps more controversial advantages is to provide a partial solution to the orbital debris problem. One of the benefits of EML1 is that it is largely indifferent, fuel-wise, to any of the inclinations in LEO. In the diagram above this can be envisioned by rotating the ellipses on an axis connecting the center of the Earth and Moon. So not only could any of the LEO facilities mentioned previously serve as a staging point to EML1, but EML1 can serve as a staging point to any of the LEO stations, or any other inclination of interest, such as those containing objects that are a traffic hazard in their orbital neighborhood.Staging from EML1 offers a multitude of advantages that more than overcome the difficulties of getting set up there.
There is a slight penalty for the Earth’s chubbiness around the middle, in terms of inclination (particularly polar orbits—curse you, J2!), but with aerobraking the job could be done for under 1 km/s of delta-V, a number that is eye-opening, but requires the use of a heatshield that has been carried out to EML1 (from somewhere). Using a direct transfer to the orbit, the cost is around 4 km/sec delta-V, but with much less of a heat-shield requirement. For debris retrieval purposes these would likely be altitudes of 800 to 1,000 kilometers, where a lot of the Earth-observation traffic is located. The strategy I would adopt would be to retrieve as many satellites (non-functioning and thus potential debris, obviously) near a particular inclination, perhaps with “sticky harpoons”, from newest to oldest (as the older ones have demonstrated stability over time), and then take them back to EML1 for forensic analysis and repurposing of the parts.
The hurdle is the trip up the gravity well. A delta-V of 4 km/sec to EML1 from LEO is not insignificant, so the trip has to be worth it through the creation of value. For LEO debris retrieval, one possible solution would be to launch a fuel payload from Earth directly to the target inclination to be retrieved by the vessel from EML1 as it collects objects of interest in LEO.
What else does staging from EML1 enable?
A) The delta-V from EML1 to GEO and back is less than the delta-V just from LEO to GEO. If you’re going to be making trips to GEO, EML1 is the long-term transport solution. What would Sirius XM Radio‘s [NASDAQ: SIRI] financial condition be if, instead of having to build out a new satellite well ahead of schedule, and at significant cost in the capital markets, they could have spent much less to send out a technician to fix the problem? If you’re retrieving salvage from GEO, you can do forensic analysis on that debris to better understand space weathering effects. You can then repurpose that debris for something else (except for the antennas and other strategic components, which DARPA is interested in), like the creation of a…
B) Solar system-wide network of data-gathering probes that provide ongoing data over decades, rather than expensive one-off missions as we do now that provide a spurt of data that is then pored over for years until the next data set arrives. EML1 can serve as an on-ramp to the Inter-Planetary Superhighways (IPS), whereby “Hubble-ized” (i.e. upgradeable) probes, likely using instruments sent from Earth and bolted on a salvaged bus and power supply from GEO, are sent out to particular stations of interest around the solar system. These would provide relays to communicate around the Sun, as in the case of probes sent to the Venus equilaterals (Sun-Venus L-4 and L-5), or keep an eye on the asteroid belt at the Sun-Mars L-2 or Sun-Jove L-1. Out-of-plane objects coming in from the Oort Cloud could be watched from a variety of locations. The point is not the utility of observations of any one kind or specific locations, but rather that with a change in our thinking we can change the way we study our Solar system. We can collect ongoing data, giving us better situational awareness, and we can service and upgrade our instruments a la Hubble by bringing them back to EML1 on the IPS. We don’t have to keep throwing very capital-intensive (human and fiscal) tools into the void for intermittent datasets.
C) Remember the materials science research being conducted at facilities down in LEO? By the time you’re putting facilities at EML1, there should have been some promising results, some of which may be ready to move into the production phase. Freeflyer platforms can be launched from EML1 into a trajectory constrained by the sphere of influence of the Moon whereby, after a certain period of time, it will return to the vicinity of an EML1 facility where it can be retrieved for processing. The completed production run can be harvested, and the next round of production set up before it’s sent back out on its course. The finished product would then be shipped back down to LEO, to whichever particular facility had arranged for its production.
D) Eye in the Sky: in addition to trying to keep track of orbital assets and debris from Earth’s surface, facilities at EML1 will offer the opportunity to see the “big picture” all the way out to GEO from a vantage point roughly 85 percent of the way to the Moon. In this way it could end up as a node in an orbital traffic control network.
E) Clutter-free work environment: EML1 doesn’t require much station keeping—on the order of hundreds of meters per second per year or less—but it is required. Undirected objects won’t hang around very long, getting perturbed into one of the two gravity wells on either side.There will come a day where the people who are itching to go beyond LEO will do so.
F) “Specializationator”: having service facilities at EML1 provides the opportunity to modularize the traffic in cislunar space. It doesn’t make much sense to carry Lunar landing legs from the Earth to LEO, LEO to the Moon, and then from low Lunar orbit (LLO) to the surface, the only time they’re really actually needed. Instead, consider bolting them on at EML1. Complicated waldos and cargo racks for retrieving satellites and other debris aren’t really needed anywhere other than for work in GEO and perhaps LEO. Don’t carry them around when they aren’t needed. Instead, get your supplies when they’re needed for where they’re needed… at EML1.
G) Asteroid Watch: a less popular suggestion is to have equipment at EML1 facilities dedicated to identifying and characterizing the Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs). This would help lay the groundwork for later missions to asteroids staged from EML1.
H) EML1 also provides an ideal staging place for missions to the Moon. It offers 708/12½ (that’s 708 hours per Lunar “day”, 12½ “days” per year) access to the entirety of the Moon’s surface. Poles, equator, mid-latitude, front side, back side, it’s all about 2.5 km/sec delta-V each way, down and up. Rather than be tied to a single location on the Moon, facilities at EML1 could provide support logistics to a base at the south pole, while also providing a staging ground for sorties to areas of interest, like the skylights in Marius Hills.
Remember, all LEO inclinations of interest can get to EML1 for about the same delta-V, a little under 4 km/sec change in velocity. This helps in things like standardizing the propulsion systems and fuel depot loads for trans-LEO trips. This means that the guy who is selling orbital depots to NASA for use at their Kennedy inclination facility can also sell them to the folks with facilities at 41° inclinations, and even to the EML1 folks, as it’s the same change in velocity to park back down in LEO propulsively.
There will come a day where the people who are itching to go beyond LEO will do so. Part of it will be the record-setting aspects of things, as with the Space Adventures folks, whose trip around the Moon, while expensive, might allow them to become the farthest travelers beyond Earth, ever—until the next folks to do so. Others will want to get in early on setting up facilities out at EML1 and on the Moon. While their companies may crater, they’ll nevertheless be the ones with the experience, and those who come after will have to learn from them.
Once at EML1, things like zombiesats in GEO and debris in LEO can start being addressed, and this will drive demand for propellant. In the early years this will, by necessity, be shipped from Earth, but pressure arises early to source at least the oxygen component (about seven-eighths of the mass needed) from somewhere else. The logical source of this propellant will be the Moon; it’s a one-day-away (from EML1) source of enormous amounts of oxygen that can be extracted by a variety of methods. At first, the main demand will come from EML1 in support of the crews dropping down to GEO, HEO, MEO, and LEO for some satellite husbandry, but eventually it will become possible to ship it all the way down to LEO for use in the fuel depots there. This would allow for much more significant shipments to orbit of hydrogen from Earth. Some of which will be shipped on to EML1.
A word on orbital fuel depots. The space community seems to like to bifurcate, and in the case of fuel depots that seems to be along the lines of LOX/LH for everything vs. storable propellants like RP-1 or UDMH, each of which have their pluses and minuses. My view is that the orbital depot solution will evolve along the lines of using long-term storables for tugboat duties, such as fetching freeflyer platforms or satellites post-launch. The kind of stuff that is done on an ongoing basis and will need ready access to propellant.
When the LOX/LH is needed, it’s likely to show up at about the same time it’s needed, or shortly before if it’s shipped as water and needs to be cracked (which not every facility may be able to provide due to power needs). It will be more of a just-in-time process to reflect the inherent volatility, especially of hydrogen, which just loves to get through tiny gaps. A variety of methods have been proposed to allow for longer-term storage of cryogenic propellants. It’s not a question of either/or, it’s a question of how the people doing the work of meeting market demand actually solve the problem.
The complement of EML1 on the near side of the Moon is EML2 on the far side of the Moon. It is sometimes offered as an alternative to EML1, but in the near-term doesn’t offer any particular advantages to make it a priority over EML1 as a development destination.The Moon as anchor tenant: grayfields for development
Oxygen, which comprises some 40–45 percent of the Moon’s composition, although locked up in rocks, was quickly identified as a key commercial product for cislunar and trans-lunar space activities. Production of oxygen from Lunar sources leads to the production of slag as a byproduct. This slag is not useless, and can serve at least two functions. One is radiation cladding for vehicles operating in cislunar space. The slag can be shaped into pieces that can be bolted on facilities at EML1 and vehicles operating from there to other destinations. These would clearly be of interest to folks who are staging missions from EML1 out to nearby asteroids. The other use is as heat shields. These could be used by vehicles traveling from EML1 to LEO and want to use aerobraking to save fuel, or could be shipped down to LEO to be used as a bolt-on heat shield for vehicles returning from LEO to Earth (which would save weight on the launch phase of the taxi).One of the key difficulties that people have about resource utilization on the Moon is that it is going to have to be a process of aggregation of the materials desired. The challenge then becomes how to make lemonade from that lemon.
Mining oxygen on the Moon can support economic activity in cislunar space, like salvaging the zombiesats in GEO, and allow for greater shipments of hydrogen from Earth. Other materials wrested from the soil, like rare earth elements and metals, could support microgravity production facilities in cislunar space whose products, like foamed metals and unique alloys, would likely find a market on Earth.
One of the key difficulties that people have about resource utilization on the Moon is that it is going to have to be a process of aggregation of the materials desired. Mother Nature and water haven’t acted on the Moon to help pool resources together. Impact violence and destruction has thoroughly distributed the constituents, and no matter what you’re trying to collect, you’re going to have to process large volumes of material to get any amount of usable stuff that you’re interested in. The challenge then becomes how to make lemonade from that lemon.
One example is the Solar-Wind Implanted Elements (SWIEs). The Lunar Sourcebook by Heiken et al. notes that if one cubic meter of regolith is heated up to approximately 800°C, it will generate approximately ten atmospheres of pressure of volatile gases. These can be drawn off and treated separately, perhaps by creative use of cold traps at the polar regions to progressively liquefy and draw off successive elements from the product. This sets the stage for helium-3 (He-3) processing of the helium portion of the gases generated. This won’t be generating large amounts of He-3, but if the opportunity is there as part of this process it should be taken advantage of. One consideration is that samples from each batch of regolith processed needs to be forwarded to scientists for processing in their “ice core” studies.
The regolith of the Moon contains the history of the Sun’s output over billions of years (the SWIEs), as well as its journey around the galactic core (GCRs, Galactic Cosmic Rays), embedded in its grains. Scientific processing can piece together that history, in the same way the glacier core samples have given us background on the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere over time. Additionally, the face of the Moon bears the scars, the astroblemes, of aeons of impacts, and can serve as a chronometer of impact objects in the Earth’s neighborhood for as long as we’ve had the Moon. So there are valid scientific reasons, with direct impact on terrestrial life, for having equipment on the Moon. Having ready access to the Moon means that the scientists are going to want to set up shop and do research in situ. These are all datasets that can contribute significantly to the understanding we are developing of Earth. Other areas of scientific interest are explored in the report by the Space Studies Board of the National Academies, “The Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon”.
A longtime favorite in the scientific community is to have radio astronomy facilities on the far side of the Moon. The Moon would provide a shield against the radio pollution coming from Earth, creating the ultimate quiet zone for research. This quietude is spoiled by specular reflection of terrestrial signals off the small bodies in the solar system, but at a level of a whisper compared with the shouting from Earth. Some are concerned that facilities at EML2 (basically right above where the telescopes would be, though the halo orbit could be quite large), could more materially affect the noise environment. An alternative might be to position pole-sitting solar sails above the Lunar poles to provide communication links into the perpetually-shadowed “everdark” craters. And if that’s not enough, NASA has identified a large number of things to do on the Moon to keep their scientists busy.As more and more activities are undertaken on the Moon, the number of caretakers of the equipment is going to grow.
The products that come from the Moon will start out as very low-value-added goods, with little processing required before getting shipped up to the processing and production freeflyer facilities in cislunar space. Oxygen is one, radiation cladding another, and as we add equipment to the stockpile on the Moon we can start creeping up the value chain. One example is low-quality solar cells, produced from the abundant silicates in the soil. Extruded metal structural elements could be developed for use on the Moon, as well as in cislunar space and even beyond for things like solar power satellites in GEO,or the construction of Mars-bound craft at EML1.
Later, as increasingly sophisticated capabilities accrue on the Lunar surface, production methods will become more sophisticated, such as breaking down the processing remnants from regolith, likely through some combination of pyrolitic and electrophoretic methods, and storing the results. Having stockpiles of vacuum-processed ultra-pure source elements (hydrogen, oxygen, carbon, titanium, etc.), and 3D printing technology may bring us one step closer to the concept of “replicators”.
The environment of the Moon also creates its own unique laboratory that will be exploited in unusual ways. It has been suggested that cutting-edge nanotechnology research be moved to the Moon, providing a natural quarantine for the inevitable “oops” moment. The same holds true for the nastiest of biological research endeavors. Google Lunar X PRIZE competitor Moon Express has announced that they will include a telescope on their rover, the first of likely many telescopic facilities that will be set up on the Moon. Another competitor, Astrobotic Technology, is actively seeking payloads, and has published a price list.
The Moon can also serve as a celestial timekeeper. Many cultures around the world use the Lunar calendar, so it is not inconceivable that at some point someone builds a Solar Cathedral that marks the beginning of each Lunar month.
As more and more activities are undertaken on the Moon, the number of caretakers of the equipment is going to grow. The earliest persons spending time on the Moon are likely to be the engineers who repair the robots and scientists doing field work for calibration and verification purposes. As the numbers increase, more support personnel are going to be needed. Someone’s going to build a still, and expect plants to be very popular pets. Regolith will be added to the growing medium early on, and those plants that provide foodstuffs in addition to oxygen will be particularly favored.
Eventually some of those foodstuffs are going to be exported to cislunar space: to facilities at EML1 for starters, but expect demand eventually for Lunar foodstuffs from Earth. There is likely also to be demand on Earth for raw Lunar regolith, in bulk, for use in gardens, greenhouses, and other applications.
Any process that uses vacuum—and there are many—can find a home on the Moon. Nearly 39,000,000 square kilometers are available, of a quality far superior to that which can be generally provided on Earth. To preserve that vacuum at that level of quality, industry is going to have to figure out some best practices very quickly. It was estimated that each of the Apollo landings effectively doubled the ambient Lunar atmosphere. That speaks more to the almost complete absence of atmosphere rather than to the pollution-generating aspects of the Lunar Excursion Modules, but the point is important nonetheless. It might be wise then to consider putting outgassing operations in deep craters so that they can help serve as a sort of catchment for those gases. This would be particularly effective in the everdark craters of the poles.We’re seeing an increasing shift from viewing space as the domain of scientists and engineers alone, to a view of space as a place to conduct growing levels of economic activities to pursue future prosperity.
In his 1965 book The Case for Going to the Moon, Neil Ruzic polled scientists and researchers in academia and industry. When queried about what kinds of processes might be done better or easier on the Moon, results included, for those in the vacuum industry: vacuum cast alloys, vacuum welds, electron optical systems, optical components, pharmaceuticals and biologicals, industrial chemicals, and energy conversion materials and devices. He also notes the advantages that levitation melting can provide, sidestepping the issue of crucible contamination of the product.
One example of a product that would benefit from vacuum is the production of anhydrous glass. Its mechanical properties have long been suspected of being exceptional. However, its optical properties generally haven’t been considered. It may well be that an early niche on the Moon is the production of superior optical components for export to whomever wants the particular properties offered by Moonglass.
The author also points out that most if not all of the products produced on the Moon will not be for export to Earth. They will be destined primarily for use on the Moon: spare parts to fix the myriad robots, useful objects for the habitats like furniture, and new tools specific to the Lunar environment. Nevertheless, the creation of a transport network from Earth to LEO, LEO to EML1, and EML1 to a variety of destinations including the Moon, will mean that there will be the opportunity for exports, and someone is going to take advantage. Bags of raw regolith for “Moon Gardens” back on Earth. The cislunar entrepreneur producing vacuum globes may decide to add a line of regolith globes to their offerings, a unique variant of the “snow globe” so popular Earthside. Lunar handicrafts, like jewelry made of thin-sections mounted on polarized LEDs, might fetch a stiff premium, and there will always be markets for vicestuffs like moonshine and “lunajuana”.
As the infrastructure develops, increasingly sophisticated and higher value-added products can be developed. New design aesthetics can be explored. Eventually there will be tourists: those who do not have a specific task on the Moon. Except for a few scattered exceptions, the facilities will be unlikely to accommodate the additional life-support strain that tourists would entail. Nevertheless, their tickets help pay the rent, so ways to accommodate them will be found. Once the tourists start showing up, you’ll start seeing things like “rego-boarding” the craters, which should be encouraged as the extreme sports crowd will help drive advances in Moonsuit technology. They’ll have other needs and desires to be met as well, which is the foundation of business opportunity. Many of these have been explored over the years in the pages of the Moon Miners’ Manifesto.Conclusion
The above should not be viewed as a roadmap, but rather an exploration of the myriad ways that exist to create value in cislunar space. What finally does happen will be driven more by necessity than desire. Business grows by responding to needs.
What should be clear is that economic development is not easy. It depends on complex webs of inter-relationships nurturing one another to grow the whole. It also requires an openness to pursuing things in a new way, even if they are perceived as disruptive to existing markets. Potent forces are always marshaled to resist changes to the status quo, but if humanity desires long-term prosperity it must continually re-evaluate what it is doing, and must secure access to increasing amounts of resources, both energy and material. Those resources exist in abundance off-world. We can pursue them, or continue trying to reallocate the effectively fixed amount of obtainable resources available on Earth, pursuing increasingly marginal supplies.
We’re seeing an increasing shift from viewing space as the domain of scientists and engineers alone, to a view of space as a place to conduct growing levels of economic activities to pursue future prosperity. Also slowly coming into view is the realization is that this is one industry with exceedingly high barriers to entry in which we have a clear commercial competitive advantage. The priority should be on growing that industry as a specialization in which the United States excels. The Moon Society will further explore this field with their track at this year’s International Space Development Conference in Washington, D.C., which is entitled “The CisLunar EconoSphere”. Speakers interested in participating are encouraged to contact the National Space Society.
It starts with assured access to orbit by several suppliers, and suborbital researchers using parabolic flights to warm up for eventual facilities on orbit. Cubesats and Nanosats can then provide design experience for future experimenters. Bigelow Aerospace modules can be leased to research consortiums for private research. Fuel depots can gas up vehicles for the next step out. This technology is not beyond our grasp, but the government cannot provide it unto the American citizenry. The American citizenry must make it happen, through their industry, initiative, and through investing in the technology and infrastructure to make it happen. We can let it wither on the vine, as we have with so many other industries, or we can make it happen and the entire world will benefit, as they have to date. The choice is entirely ours.Bibliography
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Time-Life Books, Voyage through the Universe: Spacefarers. Time-Life Books Inc., 1989.
The scene in the cramped ofﬁce in Berkeley on a recent Saturday feels like a typical start-up carried along by the tech boom, with engineers working through the weekend in a race against time. The long whiteboard down one wall has been scrawled over in different-coloured pens. A large jar of candy and a glass-doored fridge full of soda sit by the entrance.
Nate Soares, a former Google engineer, is sitting on the edge of a sofa weighing up the chances of success for the project he is working on. He puts them at only about 5 per cent. But the odds he is calculating aren’t for some new smartphone app. Instead, Soares is talking about something much more arresting: whether programmers like him will be able to save mankind from extinction at the hands of its own most powerful creation.Silicon Valley Special
The object of concern – both for him and the Machine Intelligence Research Institute (Miri), whose ofﬁces these are – is artiﬁcial intelligence. Super-smart machines with malicious intent are a staple of science ﬁction, from the soft-spoken Hal 9000 to the scarily violent Skynet. But the AI that people like Soares believe is coming mankind’s way, very probably before the end of this century, would be much worse.
If it were a sci-fi movie, a small band of misfits would be thrown together at this point to save the planet. To the people involved in this race, that doesn’t seem so far from reality. Besides Soares, there are probably only four computer scientists in the world currently working on how to programme the super-smart machines of the not-too-distant future to make sure AI remains “friendly”, says Luke Muehlhauser, Miri’s director.
Their effort is prompted by a fear of what will happen when computers match humans in intelligence. At that point, humans would cede leadership in technological development, since the machines would be capable of improving their own designs by themselves. And with the accelerating pace of technological change, it wouldn’t be long before the capabilities – and goals – of the computers would far surpass human understanding.
In their single-mindedness, they would view their biological creators as mere collections of matter, waiting to be reprocessed into something they find more useful, says Muehlhauser. They would consume all the resources on earth before propelling themselves into space, sucking energy from distant stars and ultimately devouring much of the visible universe.
On a sunny Saturday morning in northern California, this provokes a distinct sense of unreality. Alternately leaning back or perching forward awkwardly on this too-low sofa, are we really trying to hold a rational conversation about something so far beyond human conception?
…Terminator 3: The Rise of the Machines (2003) depicts a world terrorised by malevolent, human-killing robots
It isn’t unusual to hear people express big thoughts about the future in Silicon Valley these days – though most of the technology visions are much more benign. It sometimes sounds as if every entrepreneur, however trivial the start-up, has taken a leaf from Google’s mission statement and is out to “make the world a better place”.
Usually this is just rhetoric. But there is also a strand of thinking that draws on the supposedly transformative effects of the technologies that will soon be within mankind’s grasp. It assumes that the human race is about to take its fate into its hands – for good or ill.
Peter Diamandis, a serial entrepreneur, author and space enthusiast, is one of the prophets of the advanced technological civilisation supposedly at hand. He was the brains nearly 20 years ago behind the XPrize Foundation, which offered $10m to the first privately funded, reusable spacecraft. Among his current projects is a plan to mine minerals from asteroids. One large space rock in his sights contains platinum that he estimates would be worth $5,400bn at today’s prices on planet Earth.
For techno-optimists like him, the idea that computers will soon far outstrip their creators is both a given and something to be celebrated. Why would these machines bother to harm us, he says, when, to them, we will be about as interesting as “the bacteria in the soil outside in the backyard”?'We haven’t seen 1 per cent of the change we’re going to see in the next 10 years' - Peter Diamandis
Countering the disaster-movie scenario of Miri, he sketches a future in which the machines shake off their earthly shackles and leave mankind behind: “It’s a huge universe, there’s plenty of resources and energy for them.” His matter-of-fact tone makes this science fiction outcome sound almost a given. “There’s no reason for them to stay here and battle with us – they can escape at the speed of light if they want.”
Connecting the present to a future in which humanity is liberated by advanced technology is what prophets like Diamandis are all about. He points to the members of a new super-rich class who sit at the head of the biggest tech companies and have both the money and the ambition to pursue true breakthrough ideas – people like Elon Musk of Tesla Motors and SpaceX, Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Larry Page of Google. “They have the wherewithal to make their dreams come true or to go after the world’s biggest problems,” he says. “It has very little value to work on an app for them.”
Artificial intelligence is one of the main ingredients in this. It is a technology that promises to make possible many others, for instance by letting people interact with computers by just talking to them, and by making computers far better at coming up with useful answers. AI also acts as the “brains” in robots, drones and driverless cars, bringing an awareness of the world to inanimate objects.
Companies that have stepped up investments in AI research over the past year, either by buying promising start-ups in the field or hiring well-known talent, include Google, Facebook and Amazon, as well as Chinese internet company Baidu. Asked at an internal Google event earlier this year whether the company had plans to try to develop human-level machine intelligence, co-founder Larry Page expressed optimism about the progress that might be made in future, though he also suggested the technology was still some way off, according to people familiar with his comments.
The history of AI research, which can be traced back 58 years to a conference at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire where the phrase was coined, has been littered with false dawns. If the latest hopes also fall short, it won’t be because of a lack of ambition or effort.
…Google’s driverless car reflects co-founder Larry Page’s optimistic views on machine intellige
Extinction events are hard to contemplate for long, and not just because of their sheer awfulness. It is impossible to know how seriously to take them, since non-experts have no way of calculating the probability of catastrophes that have such a stark, binary outcome.
There is also extinction fatigue. The list of things that might finish us off has been growing. It includes not just global warming, but the microscopic, self-replicating machines of nanotechnology that might reduce the world to a grey goo or a plague released by irresponsible bioengineering. Frankly, who has time to worry about all this stuff?
Provided they seem sufficiently remote, truly horrific events can even be a little thrilling. From Icarus on, the idea of the creator being destroyed by his creation has been a compelling fantasy, a sort of Frankenstein narcissism for the tech elite. As Silicon Valley futurist Paul Saffo puts it, this touches on “a real, deep yearning. It’s the fall from the garden, it’s original sin.”
That might explain why the subject holds such fascination, both for those who warn of the risks as well as those who see AI as the tool that will instead liberate mankind. “Both sides are treating this like a secular religion,” Saffo says.
If this was all there was to the nightmare scenario of artificial intelligence, it might be easy to set aside. But the warnings have been growing louder. Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, writing earlier this year, said that AI would be “the biggest event in human history”. But he added: “Unfortunately, it might also be the last.”'AI is potentially more dangerous than nukes’ - Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Motors
Elon Musk – whose successes with electric cars (through Tesla Motors) and private space flight (SpaceX) have elevated him to almost superhero status in Silicon Valley – has also spoken up. Several weeks ago, he advised his nearly 1.2 million Twitter followers to read Superintelligence, a book about the dangers of AI, which has made him think the technology is “potentially more dangerous than nukes”.
Mankind, as Musk sees it, might be like a computer program whose usefulness ends once it has started up a more complex piece of software. “Hope we’re not just the biological boot loader for digital superintelligence,” he tweeted. “Unfortunately, that is increasingly probable.”
Nick Bostrom, the author of the book that provoked Musk’s alarming warning, has a dry and deliberate delivery. A Swedish philosophy professor and director of the University of Oxford’s Future of Humanity Institute, his clipped accent and sardonic delivery make him typecast for the role of Jeremiah.
Bostrom says he got interested in the subject in the 1990s, in an email discussion forum for an odd group known as the Extropians. Among the assorted “cranks” and “crackpots”, he says, was a handful of serious thinkers who were already looking ahead to a trans-humanist future in which technology would carry mankind beyond its biological limitations. They included Eliezer Yudkowsky, the guiding spirit behind Miri in Berkeley.AI on the big screen
Ten landmark films
The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951, Robert Wise)
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968, Stanley Kubrick)
Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977, George Lucas
The Terminator (1984, James Cameron)
The Matrix (1999, Wachowski & Lana Wachowski)
A.I. (2001, Steven Spielberg)
I, Robot (2004, Alex Proyas)
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005, Garth Jennings)
Her (2013, Spike Jonze)
Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015, Joss Whedon)
The belief that self-inflicted extinction through technology is something worthy of serious academic study has been spreading. This year has seen the formation of the Future of Life Institute in the US (Musk is on the advisory board), while Cambridge university has created the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk. With no shortage of cataclysmic events to worry about, the most pressing question may be to decide what to worry about most.
“People are spending way too much time thinking about climate change, way too little thinking about AI,” says Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley investor who is both a friend of Musk and a big financial backer of Yudkowsky’s group.
Behind all the warnings is a growing belief among computer scientists that machines will, within decades, reach the condition of “artificial general intelligence” and match humans in their intellectual capacity. That moment, Thiel says, “will be as momentous an event as extraterrestrials landing on this planet”. It will mark the birth of an intellect that is as capable as that of humans but is entirely inhuman, with unpredictable results.
Artificial intelligence has already provoked a public debate in recent months about a different kind of risk. This has centred on how it might wipe out human work, as clever computers and the robots they make possible take over most types of human employment. But the bigger issue may be whether AI wipes out mankind itself.
“The first question we would ask if aliens landed on this planet is not, what does this mean for the economy or jobs,” says Thiel. “It would be: are they friendly or unfriendly?”
Strictly speaking, according to Bostrom, the kind of machine-based intelligence that is heading humanity’s way wouldn’t wish its makers harm. But it would be so intent on its own goals that it could end up crushing mankind without a thought, like a human stepping carelessly on an ant. This is where the nightmare scenarios come into play. Once they soar past the intellects of their creators, machines are likely to reach their own conclusions about how best to achieve the goals programmed into them. And if humans can’t even prevent accidents in the moderately complex technological systems of today, what chance is there of controlling the systems to come?
Miri was founded on the belief that mankind’s ant brains will have to find a way to programme safety into these godlike machines before they can reach their full potential. But anything human minds can dream up to restrain the unfathomable will of the supercomputers seems almost guaranteed to fail. And with complex systems governed by computers playing an increasingly central role in everyday life, that puts humanity at a distinct disadvantage if things go wrong.
Even the pessimists, however, say they are prepared to consider a happier outcome. Bostrom, for his part, says that there’s a chance things could turn out very well indeed. Aided by their brilliant machines, humans could quickly colonise space, cure ageing and upload their minds into computers – it’s just a case of getting past the dangerous moment of the intelligence explosion.
“If we can make it to the next century and achieve technological maturity, we could have another billion years,” he says.
…Japan is a leading developer of robots designed to help humans: Toshiba’s 'ApriAttenda' housekeeper can open a fridge door
Like all technology races, the pursuit of a human-like machine intelligence is propelled by hope, idealism, ambition and greed. It is also carried along by its own momentum, as the exponential growth in computing power that has accompanied the information revolution adds inexorably to the capabilities at the disposal of the computer scientists.
Peter Diamandis embodies the hope that many in Silicon Valley feel these days with this accelerating pace of technological change. Standing before an audience at Singularity University, the private training centre he helped to found a stone’s throw from Google’s headquarters, he predicts that a “massive tsunami of change” is coming. It will put an end to want for billions of people, he says – by which he means meeting the basic needs of “every man, woman and child. I don’t mean Louis Vuitton and Ferraris.” Provided the cost of computing power continues to fall at the rate it has since the arrival of the microchip, he predicts: “We haven’t seen 1 per cent of the change we’re going to see in the next 10 years.”
To optimists like Diamandis, an irrepressible human drive for discovery means that it is both impossible and undesirable to restrain new inventions. That is the case even if some of their users are potentially harmful: “There is this genetic drive we have to explore. It drives us to do more because we can – and if we can, why wouldn’t we want to?”
There is also an unquestioned assumption in Silicon Valley that if something can be built, then, inevitably, it will be. To deliberately hold back from advancing a technology to its local, logical conclusion seems not just negligent but, in some unspoken way, morally wrong.
That is the assumption that Neil Jacobstein, co-head of the AI course at Singularity University, makes when describing how computers will one day become so advanced that they can simulate human brains. “We’re going to reverse-engineer the brain, that’s just the way it is,” he says.'Do we need more innovation? It’s non-obvious’ - Nick Bostrom, Director, University of Oxford’s Future of Humanity Institute
Nor is there much social questioning of the headlong rush of technological development in the hands of private corporations. “Discussions around innovation are built on the premise that we need more,” says Bostrom. “It’s non-obvious, if you take a step back and look at the macro picture for humanity, that more innovation would be better.” Such dour pronouncements sound profoundly out of tune with the times.
And then there is the tech industry’s wealth-creation engine. Once cranked up, it becomes hard to apply the brakes. Technologies are built in a hurry and rushed to market. Fixes, where needed, are added later.
“There are many incentives to getting something built and very few to getting it right,” says Soares. Against these urges, self-restraint seems highly unlikely, he adds: “In history, that has almost never happened.” It is these unbalanced incentives that have persuaded him there is only a 5 per cent chance of programming sufficient safeguards into advanced AI (although he adds another 15 per cent that something will happen that we can’t even imagine for now).
For an idea of how things could turn out, the internet is a model held up by those on both sides. A complex, networked system that draws together both human and machine intelligence, it has advanced in an ad hoc way. To some tech visionaries, it may even become the place that a collective hive mind emerges, transcending the individual.
Pervasive cyber security flaws show how systems like this are inherently vulnerable, says Soares. If similar glitches creep into the super-intelligent computer systems of the future, the prospects for mankind could be bleak.
Others, by contrast, see the internet as a forerunner of a more harmonious marriage of human and machine minds. To Google’s Larry Page, AI is already woven inextricably into online life. Services like web search or automatic translation between languages represent a high level of machine intelligence under control of people. “It’s learning from you and you’re learning from it,” he says. “In some sense the internet is already that: it’s a combination of people and machine intelligence to make our lives better.”
Page, who is halfway through reading Bostrom’s book, says he is glad that the risks of AI are being aired – though he also criticises the “alarmism” around the subject. There will be plenty of time later on to work out how to control the advanced machine intelligence that is coming: “As we get closer and closer to it, I think we’ll know. I think we’ll learn a lot in the process.”
Yet that isn’t likely to silence the apocalyptic warnings. As Muehlhauser, the director of Miri, puts it: “We’re toying with the intelligence of the gods. And there isn’t an off switch.”
Photographs: Warner Bros/The Kobal Collection; MGM/The Kobal Collection; Getty Images; Bloomberg; Google
Letter in response to this article:
AI may conclude that existence is pointless / from Pascal Michels, Barcelona, Spain
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EMC [128 Certification Exam(s) ]
Enterasys [13 Certification Exam(s) ]
Ericsson [5 Certification Exam(s) ]
ESPA [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Esri [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
ExamExpress [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
Exin [40 Certification Exam(s) ]
ExtremeNetworks [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
F5-Networks [20 Certification Exam(s) ]
FCTC [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
Filemaker [9 Certification Exam(s) ]
Financial [36 Certification Exam(s) ]
Food [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
Fortinet [14 Certification Exam(s) ]
Foundry [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
FSMTB [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Fujitsu [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
GAQM [9 Certification Exam(s) ]
Genesys [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
GIAC [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
Google [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
GuidanceSoftware [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
H3C [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
HDI [9 Certification Exam(s) ]
Healthcare [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
HIPAA [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
Hitachi [30 Certification Exam(s) ]
Hortonworks [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
Hospitality [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
HP [752 Certification Exam(s) ]
HR [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
HRCI [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Huawei [21 Certification Exam(s) ]
Hyperion [10 Certification Exam(s) ]
IAAP [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IAHCSMM [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IBM [1533 Certification Exam(s) ]
IBQH [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
ICAI [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
ICDL [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
IEEE [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IELTS [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IFPUG [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IIA [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
IIBA [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
IISFA [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Intel [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
IQN [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
IRS [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
ISA [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
ISACA [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
ISC2 [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
ISEB [24 Certification Exam(s) ]
Isilon [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
ISM [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
iSQI [7 Certification Exam(s) ]
ITEC [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Juniper [65 Certification Exam(s) ]
LEED [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Legato [5 Certification Exam(s) ]
Liferay [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Logical-Operations [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Lotus [66 Certification Exam(s) ]
LPI [24 Certification Exam(s) ]
LSI [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Magento [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Maintenance [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
McAfee [8 Certification Exam(s) ]
McData [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Medical [68 Certification Exam(s) ]
Microsoft [375 Certification Exam(s) ]
Mile2 [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Military [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Misc [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Motorola [7 Certification Exam(s) ]
mySQL [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
NBSTSA [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
NCEES [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
NCIDQ [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
NCLEX [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Network-General [12 Certification Exam(s) ]
NetworkAppliance [39 Certification Exam(s) ]
NI [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
NIELIT [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Nokia [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
Nortel [130 Certification Exam(s) ]
Novell [37 Certification Exam(s) ]
OMG [10 Certification Exam(s) ]
Oracle [282 Certification Exam(s) ]
P&C [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
Palo-Alto [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
PARCC [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
PayPal [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Pegasystems [12 Certification Exam(s) ]
PEOPLECERT [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
PMI [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
Polycom [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
PostgreSQL-CE [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Prince2 [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
PRMIA [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
PsychCorp [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
PTCB [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
QAI [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
QlikView [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Quality-Assurance [7 Certification Exam(s) ]
RACC [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Real Estate [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Real-Estate [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
RedHat [8 Certification Exam(s) ]
RES [5 Certification Exam(s) ]
Riverbed [8 Certification Exam(s) ]
RSA [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
Sair [8 Certification Exam(s) ]
Salesforce [5 Certification Exam(s) ]
SANS [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
SAP [98 Certification Exam(s) ]
SASInstitute [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
SAT [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
SCO [10 Certification Exam(s) ]
SCP [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
SDI [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
See-Beyond [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Siemens [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Snia [7 Certification Exam(s) ]
SOA [15 Certification Exam(s) ]
Social-Work-Board [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
SpringSource [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
SUN [63 Certification Exam(s) ]
SUSE [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
Sybase [17 Certification Exam(s) ]
Symantec [135 Certification Exam(s) ]
Teacher-Certification [4 Certification Exam(s) ]
The-Open-Group [8 Certification Exam(s) ]
TIA [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Tibco [18 Certification Exam(s) ]
Trainers [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Trend [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
TruSecure [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
USMLE [1 Certification Exam(s) ]
VCE [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
Veeam [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
Veritas [33 Certification Exam(s) ]
Vmware [58 Certification Exam(s) ]
Wonderlic [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
Worldatwork [2 Certification Exam(s) ]
XML-Master [3 Certification Exam(s) ]
Zend [6 Certification Exam(s) ]
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