C to Singularity

Gray Goo

Scenario 01 by Julien Simshäuser

Small, hungry and out-of-control. Gray goo is a scenario in which self-replicating nanobots get loose and keep duplicating indefinitely. To feed the replication process, the bots consume any carbon-based material. Unfortunately, all life on Earth is carbon-based. Calculations show that a glitch in the system would turn our planet into goo within 3.5 hours.

Machines Will Steal Your Job

Scenario 02 by Timo Lenzen

There's a 50-50 chance that a machine will replace you. Already today, machines now threaten one out of three jobs thus far held by humans. Robots taking over our jobs will inevitably lead to an even wider gap between the rich and poor, political strife and civil war.

Autonomous Killing Machines

Scenario 03 by Marti Romances

More than 50 nations are currently developing robotic weapon systems that are able to choose and fire on targets independently, without human intervention. The lack of morality and mortality could force situations to escalate with potentially terrifying consequences for civilians.

Roko’s Basilisk

Scenario 04 by Golgotha

In this Internet born thought experiment, an all-powerful AI from the future will retroactively torture those who did not actively help bring about its existence. This includes you now. Or as Golgotha put it: "He will have to recognize this footprint, look down to believe this reality and follow the path which preserves him from death."

Paper Clip Maximizer

Scenario 05 by Justin Blyth

Paperclip Maximizer is a thought experiment that shows how an apparently innocuous AI, which only job is to make paperclips, could ultimately destroy humankind. The AI would go to extremes to innovate better techniques to maximize the number of paperclips and sourcing materials. Eventually, it would consume all resources essential to our survival, or turn us humans into paperclip material.

Take-over by Transcending Upload

Scenario 06 by Michael Willis

Superhuman intelligence could be reached by successfully uploading an individual’s consciousness to a computer. The mind’s original memories, skills, values, and consciousness will all be preserved. Additional computational resources would give it enormous intellectual superiority. The post-human world would be a mere reflection of a single person’s ego and desires.

Countdown to Singularity