Home Page Science Frontiers

No. 116: Mar-Apr 1998

Issue Contents

Other pages











Evolution Of Cyberlife

The evolvable hardware described in SF#115 is only one several efforts underway aimed at modeling life and evolution.

Network Tierra. Here we have a network of 150 computers linked worldwide by the Internet. One objective is the exploration of structures and patterns of information that drive evolutionary processes. A key element is an artificial lifeform that begins as a "seed organism" (modeled as information, of course) that wanders at will among the different environments presented by the computers in the network. So far, these digital organisms are surviving and changing.

(Blakeslee, Sandra; "Cyberlife Critters Evolving in Computer Network," Austin American-Statesman, November 30, 1997. Cr. D. Phelps.

Minad Project. Begun in 1953, the Minad Project is pure futurism; that is, the prediction of where the computer revolution is taking us. The Minad Project envisioned three evolutionary stages:

  1. Wiring the world (already accomplished as today's Internet);
  2. The transformation of the network into a high-speed creative mechanism (the Technosphere); and
  3. The emergence of global hyperintelligence (the Autosphere).

The Minad Project is now forecasting what this all means for non-silicon-based life in the 21st. Century.

(Baker, Lance; "They're Taking Over," New Scientist, p.55, December 6, 1997.)

Evolution of cyberlife

From Science Frontiers #116, MAR-APR 1998. 1998-2000 William R. Corliss