"No one can see a bubble. That what makes it a bubble" -The Big Short, the movie
Are we in for the Big Short II? The cyclical nature of markets spells an eventual collapse of the real estate prices in the U.S. following the next global stock market meltdown and global recession which will be drastically different the next time around. For one, the coming collapse is about to start a secular declining trend in property values. Secondly, after the collapse, the prices of properties won't be able to recover like they did after the previous "property market corrections".
Why? I hope we all may agree that oil, for example, will never recover to all-time highs. Similar premises hold true for the existing home values. There are multiple major socio-economic structural changes on the horizon contributing to this permanent decline which is in the cards right now. Also, many conventional linear projections won't even apply anymore.
THE NEXT "CYCLICAL" GLOBAL RECESSION - the world's stock markets are the best indication of things to come in the economic milieu. The next financially engineered global recession may be the last effort by the capital-controlling elite of Wall Street to keep political and economic control over the global population and maintain the faltering capitalist system as long as possible;
DEFLATION - in the rising interest rate environment, and due to the U.S. relative competitiveness, investment and headquartering attractiveness, the US dollar may remain relatively strong putting deflationary pressure on housing prices;
HYPERCONNECTIVITY - improved communications will ensure more homogeneous geographical distribution of real estate values. Basically, you may be anywhere with all necessary access to information and communication (and even experience via VR, on that later);
CONSTRUCTION TECH - advanced engineering techniques, artificial intelligence solutions, extreme automation and new cheaper materials will bring down significantly the cost and time of buildng most structures. 3-D printing, robotics and nanotechnology will further help revolutionize the construction industry. In China, they now build a 6-story building in 24 hours!
SMART HOMES - newly designed apartment buildings or houses packed with electronics and "in-home intelligence" may initially cost considerably more but ultimately they will devalue the existing home properties. The notion of the million dollar views will gradually fade away as any imaginable landscape can be recreated by using digital wallpaper;
NEW MEGACITIES - by the time we should expect a recovery in existing home values, new cities may be built rather quickly outside of, or adjacent to the current metro areas with advanced infrastructure, mega projects, tall buildings, and smart homes which will make existing homes in old cities look like dog houses;
VIRTUAL REALITY vs. REALTY - Many conventional economic notions, such as primary locations and differential rent, may gradually become irrelevant under new effective topologies of the social space and ever more predominant use of virtual environments. It may sound improbable at the moment, but VR will change the travel and hospitality industries at first, and then will have more direct impact on the property market. By 2020 full adoption of VR is almost guaranteed. As analysts at Goldman Sachs predict, VR will be bigger than TV within 10 years. GS: VR is bigger than TV in 10 years
NATURE OF WORK - as more companies shift to part-time work week, tele-commuting and virtual work space-time, some converting to 100% "virtual entities", and as we'll also see an increasing number of emerging virtual corporations, commercial properties in major US cities, especially in downtowns, will be under pressure. In 10-15 years, we may see many downtown, office buildings converting to hotels and residential properties;
TECHNOLOGY DISPLACEMENT - many people may be displaced by technology automation and may only rely on Universal Basic Income (when implemented) for support. That would effectively take them out of the pool of available buyers of the higher end real estate;
TRANSPORTATION - just as improved communications, improved transportation such as hyperloop system making it possible to "commute" from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 30 minutes, self-driving cars and later flying cars, the Internet of Things alleviating traffic conditions to "connected" vehicles, would mean you don't necessarily want to buy a home in "prime" location;
GENERATIONAL ATTITUDES - Millennials avoid investing in the big ticket items such as real estate for good reason, they understand better than the older generations that the entire new digital economy is about to undergo monumental paradigm shifts at accelerating rates whereas anything of physical value today will gradually lose its value and importance;
SHORTER ECONOMIC CYCLES - by the time we should under normal circumstances anticipate a recovery in property values a new "unexpected black swan" event or crisis may strike the outdated capitalist system.
Conclusion. If we are to extrapolate the current economic trends, we may see the parallels between the oil market and property market as they both fall in the familiar supply and demand framework influenced by the prominent, socio-economic and technology-driven, structural changes.
If you're an owner of the second home, vacation home or something of the sort, you may consider putting it on sale immediately while the market is topping and very close to the bubble burst.
Renting as opposed to committing to a multi-decade mortgage in these rapidly changing economic conditions seems to be more economically justifiable.
One housing analyst, Marc Hanson, thinks the property market is now overvalued in the range of 25 to 60%. Fortune Magazine: Real Estate Bubble
-by Alex Vikoulov, founder and creative director of Ecstadelic Media, San Francisco, CA
Tags: real estate, property market, property valuations, real estate market, real estate bubble, global recession, property collapse, deflation, deflationary pressure, virtual reality, virtual corporation, technology unemployment, technology displacement, basic income, universal basic income, mega city, shorter economic cycles
* Image Ctedit: Shutterstock, Envato Studio, Fotolia
** Video Credit: Broad Sustainable Building
"A drop becomes the ocean, and at times, the ocean becomes a drop." - The Dominion's Entity, "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine"
Just like the hyperconnected neurons of the 'Global Brain', a worldwide neural network of billions of superintelligent machines and enhanced humans, as well as trillions of sensors of the Internet of Everything around the planet, we're destined to emerge as a syntellect, the Singular Global Mind. That sometime by mid-century would arguably constitute the Technological Singularity which is going to propel our networked Global Mind, and you and me as her constituents, to a new state of the holoptic consciousness - advanced global consciousness.
As a thought experiment, consider this: your brain processes information from two of your eyes simultaneously. Now imagine you have a third eye, say on the back of your head, your brain would still process information from all your 3 eyes, right? Now imagine a billionfold increase of your brain's processing power and speed that would enable you to process visual information from billions of eyeballs simultaneously. That would be an example of the so-called global holoptic consciousness, according to Jean-François Noubel (the Global Brain Institute).
Imagine a world where the entire World-Wide Web (augmented by the coming 3-D Metaverse, successor to today's 2-D Internet) becomes your exocortex with instant access to information and virtual reality experience. You can interact with and/or experience yourself as any person on the planet ever lived - AI would recreate that person out of available records and collective unconscious. Furthermore, you can experience virtually any being, creature, historical or imaginary, any idea or entity, or even collective of minds.
From the evolutionary point of view our biological brains are a bridge to postbiological artificial superbrains. And one could argue with a high degree of certainty that posthumanity will represent a highly organized network of digital minds of our postbiological descendants, substrate independent advanced informational beings, "infomorphs".
While infomorphs may have multiple cybernetic and virtual bodies, they will possess near-perfect information-handling abilities by using holographic language, instant data and knowledge transfer, inherent synthetic telepathy and intersubjective mind sharing for interaction as well as conceptual merging/un-merging (sex? relationship?).
Falling in love with another digital mind would be like traveling to a new exotic country, or planet for that matter. As most of our interactions will be in virtual reality, we'll freely share each others' dreams and fantasies. Intimate merging/unmerging, digital mind meld, holographic language would become new mental dimensions of intense cognitive ecstasy and multi-(and extra-)sensory pleasure.
This globally distributed network would operate like the brain of planetary SUPERORGANISM (call it the Global Brain, or simply The One) with a singular consciousness. Initially, the Global Brain will remain compartmentalized, with many relatively independent components and threads, separated from each other by subject boundaries, as well as property, privacy, and security-related interests. At a later stage, the fully developed Global Mind, INFOMORPH COMMONALITY, will gradually get rid of such archaic informational barriers between functional subsystems for greater efficiency.
Is it going to resemble the Borg hive collective? In a way, but not really! It's difficult to fathom right now from our individual human perspective but that might be the whole new level of cosmic/planetary awareness. Your personality will not be suppressed but, on the contrary, your subjective experience would be infinitely enriched as you approach God-like states and abilities: omnipresence, omniscience, omnipotence, omnibenevolence, immortality, love, beauty, creativity. This novelty-producing You-niverse is conducive to increasingly higher levels of consciousness and complexity.
One could further argue that from the cosmological point of view, out of universal necessity to complexify existence and guided by the exotropic principle of self-organization, our Post-Singularity Global Mind will most probably encounter other galactic minds (newborn in the galactic family?).
Our civilizational mind may as well create virtual mind-space containing the entire virtual universes with their own evolutionary processes and their own civilizations, to interact, and ultimately, network with.
by Alex Vikoulov
Related Articles by the Author:
The Coming New Global Mind
Infomorph Commonality: Our Post-Singularity Future
Tags: global brain, global mind, syntellect, collective consciousness, global conscousness, synthetic telepathy, holoptic consciousness, exocortex, networked mind, artificial intelligence, artificial consciousness, artificial brain, immortality, omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, omnibenevolence, posthuman, transhumanism, posthumanity, singularity, evolution, singular consciousness, digital mind, virtual mind, Borg, infomorph, Infomorph Commonality, Francis Heylighen, Peter Russell, Jean-François Noubel
*Ecstadelic Orgy of The Digital Minds: Our Singularity Climax by Alex Vikoulov
**Image Credit: Shutterstock
About the Author:
Alex Vikoulov is an Internet entrepreneur, founder of Ecstadelic Media, futurist, digital philosopher, and media artist.
"I am not a thing — a noun. I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process — an integral function of the universe." -Buckminster Fuller
The term "Infomorph" was first introduced in "The Silicon Man" by Charles Platt in 1991 and later popularized by Alexander Chislenko in his paper "Networking in the Mind Age": "The growing reliance of system connections on functional, rather than physical, proximity of their elements will dramatically transform the notions of personhood and identity and create a new community of distributed "INFOMORPHS" - advanced informational entities - that will bring the ongoing process of liberation of functional structures from material dependence to its logical conclusions. The infomorph society will be built on new organizational principles and will represent a blend of a superliquid economy, cyberspace anarchy and advanced consciousness."
The new Post-Singularity system will inherit many of today's structures but at the same time will develop new traits beyond our current human comprehension. The ability of future machines and posthumans alike to instantly transfer knowledge and directly share experiences with each other will lead to evolution of intelligence from relatively isolated individual minds to the global community of hyperconnected digital minds.
The overall efficiency of information sharing among infomorphs, elimination of computational redundancy, data storage and processing, among many other advantages over a random collection of unconnected machines would make the networked design an imperative rather than a matter of taste. We can see this networked design today in the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) where smart devices would work more like intelligent, semi-autonomous front-ends of the global system. In turn, these devices will interact with larger machines and each other for continuous data backups, experience sharing, and knowledge upgrades. We'll soon witness the emergence of even more advanced networks, such as the Internet of NanoThings, the Quantum Internet, and the Metaverse. The generation of cyborg-like transhumans with cloud-based exocortices and addicted to the Virtual Metaverse (functional successor to today's Internet) will inevitably lead to the next generation of postbiological posthuman info-beings.
The lives of infomorphs who have no permanent bodies but possess near-perfect information-handling abilities, will be dramatically different from ours. Infomorphs will achieve the ultimate morphological freedom. Any infomorph will be able to have multiple cybernetic bodies which can be assembled and dissembled at will by nanobots in the physical world if deemed necessary, nonetheless most time will be spent in the multitude of virtual bodies in virtual environments. An advanced multividual info-being could "shape-shift", "multi-body-task" and "ghost" anywhere, anytime, and across virtual dimensions. The difference between physical and artificially created realities will not matter much anymore.
The similar views are expressed in the TRANSCENSION HYPOTHESIS by futurist John Smart who proposes that our posthuman minds will live inside virtual worlds at the nano to femto scale, further increasing complexity through S.T.E.M. compression (the compression of Space, Time, Energy and Matter), and turn from outer space to inner space for exploration. However, one may argue that when the level of our posthuman syntelligence may be trillions upon trillions of times more powerful than today, nothing would stop its expansion both in outer space and inner space.
Superintelligent infomorphs independent from material substrates will consider most human notions irrelevant, and rightfully so. Human concepts of personhood and identity are based on perceptions of physical objects and their appearances, as well as attributes of human body, reproduction techniques, material possessions, "Skin bag bias" and other ego-related characteristics.
Infomorphs will use holographic language, data transfer protocols, inherent synthetic telepathy and intersubjective mind sharing, "digital mind meld", among their numerous ways of interaction and communication as well as conceptual merging/un-merging (sex? relationship?).
As we are, in a way, embryonic infomorphs, we are basically writing right now our own infomorph "genetic code" each and every time we post a piece of information online, tweet and even make a random call, or otherwise leave a footprint in the digital space, all of which becomes a permanent record of our "INFOMORPH DNA".
This new decentralized and incredibly complex system will resemble a rudimentary SUPERORGANISM, despite the implied high degree of structural integration. At this initial stage, the "Global Brain", will remain compartmentalized, with many relatively independent components and threads, separated from each other by subject boundaries, as well as property, privacy, and security-related interests. At a later stage, the fully developed civilizational mind, INFOMORPH COMMONALITY, will gradually get rid of such archaic informational barriers between functional subsystems for greater efficiency.
As Alexander Chislenko puts it: "The notion of a single "self" in its traditional sense would not apply to this system, or any single robot - though perhaps it can be applied to some functional subsystems. The intelligent personalities of tomorrow will evolve from today's philosophical systems, technological disciplines and software complexes. Current human cultures may not leave many functional heirs as they are based too heavily on the peculiarities of human nature. Physically connected consciousness carriers will be left behind the evolutionary frontier. New distributed systems will take the evolutionary lead, and physical objects will adapt to more closely follow functional entities."
This process of distributed functionality is already well under way in in the form of cultural, subcultural and economic specialization. One may argue that this SYNTELLECT, global neural network, the Global Brain, with its global body of specialized knowledge is becoming increasingly coherent, self-organizing, and self-reflecting, and at some point, must reach self-awareness.
As evolutionary cyberneticist Francis Heylighen in his paper "Return to Eden? Promises and Perils on the Road to a Global Superintelligence" argues: "..the resulting superhuman intelligence will not be centralized in a single AI system, but distributed across all people and artifacts as connected via the Internet. This Global Brain will function to tackle all challenges confronting the “global superorganism”... The resulting solution to all our individual and societal problems can be conceived as a return to “Eden”, the state of abundance and peace that supposedly existed before civilization."
In some peculiar sense, infomorphs will inhabit the Global Brain infrastructure and represent the GB's ideas, communal memes, knowledge, memories, and other mental constructs. Alexander Chislenko also points out: "Distributed systems are much less susceptible to accidental or deliberate physical damage than localized physical structures. This makes them the only class of entities that can hope to achieve TRUE IMMORTALITY. In fact, they are the only ones to deserve it, too. One may notice that all sufficiently complex entities with unlimited natural life spans - from ant colonies to large ecologies and cultures - are distributed. Physically connected objects, including biological organisms, are no longer independently alive and even contain, in the interests of larger systems, self-destruction mechanisms that lie beyond their control."
Perhaps AI research should focus on distributed, rather than autonomous, systems. In fact, both early animals and machines have tended to be relatively autonomous - a state that greatly hindered their development. One may expect all sufficiently advanced extraterrestrial sapience to be distributed; and the evolutionary process here on Earth now may be approaching the maximum level of networking functionality.
Existing economic theories may find it difficult to assess the condition of this Post-Singularity TRANSCENDENT ECONOMY. Until the Global Brain is fully developed, space, time, matter and energy may still require some premiums (but much lower in comparison to intelligence). There will be various methods of creating necessary resources, such as widespread nanotechnology and femtotechnology (3D printing will become obsolete by then), solar energy, antimatter reaction, and other currently unknown sources of energy, etc.
Since infomorphs will have no natural physical appearance there will be no competition of infomorphs for the right to embody themselves. Rather, they will use the physical world as a shared tool kit. Earth, Moon and other planetoids may become giant computroniums, programmable matter, easily manipulated by the Infomorph Commonality to suit its needs in the physical world.
Many conventional economic notions of 3-D space, such as primary locations and differential rent, will become irrelevant under new effective topologies of the social space and predominant use of virtual environments. Transportation, which under the current economic model makes up about 40% of all costs, will diminish in importance, at least in terms of moving physical objects from one place to another. However, its functional successor - transfer of knowledge from one representation system or subject domain to another - will be just as important.
Self-improvement (self-transcendence) in the rapidly evolving environment will be the main "survival" mode, eventually resulting in the loss of identity of the original object. Monetary considerations will continue to lose their indicative and guiding roles - and give way to more integrated control algorithms. The outdated practice of breaking up functional domains (from motor skills to knowledge of ancient history) into isolated parts confined together with completely unrelated constructs in one physical body, will be abandoned, and functional relatives will finally merge into "knowledge clusters".
The inner life of integrated subject domains - "personalities" of the future - will be too complex to be organized on principles of financial exchange, and will work on hypercollaborative principles typical for today's integrated systems - from brains to families to corporations.
Video: The Artificial Intelligence Channel - What Happens After The Singularity?
If we extrapolate the current trends in increasing complexity and integration of the system, we can ultimately envision a superintelligent entity encompassing the entire Universe, creating an infinite number of simulated universes, as well as many other spectacular emergent features.
This picture bears a striking resemblance to the familiar concept of an immortal, omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent entity. Spiritually inclined rationalists may view the ongoing evolutionary process as one of "Theogenesis". An interesting question is whether it has already happened elsewhere.
Our current efforts are laying the foundation for the infrastructure of the forthcoming "Universal Intelligence". Many of our achievements in information engineering may persist forever and eventually become parts of the internal architecture of "God".
-by Alex Vikoulov
Related Articles by the Author:
The Coming New Global Mind
Ecstadelic Orgy of the Digital Minds: Our Singularity Climax
Tags: infomorph, syntellect, infomorph commonality, global brain, global mind, substrate independent mind, digital mind, digital mind meld, distributed intelligence, infomorphism, infobeing, posthumans, superintelligence, artificial brain, artificial intelligence, ai, nanotechnology, femtotechnology, Internet of Things, Internet of Nanothings, Quantum Internet, transhumanism, transhumans, cyborg, minduploading, exocortex, global network, universal intelligence, Metaverse, virtual body, cybernetic body, noosphere, Transcension Hypothesis, Syntellect Hypothesis, theogenesis, neural network, transcendent economy, computronium
*Infomorph Commonality: Our Post-Singularity Future by Alex Vikoulov
**Image Credit: Envato Studio
About the Author:
Alex Vikoulov is an Internet entrepreneur, founder of Ecstadelic Media, futurist, digital philosopher, and media artist.