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The biosphere is a stupendously complex and poorly understood system, which we depend on for our survival, and which we are attacking on every front. Worrying. But what has that got to do with machine learning and AI? I will explain how the complexity and stability of the entire biosphere depend on, and select for, the intelligence of the individual organisms that comprise it; why simulations of ecological tasks in naturalistic environments could be an important test bed for Artificial General Intelligence, AGI; how new technology and machine learning are already giving us a deeper understanding of life on Earth; and why AGI is needed to maintain the biosphere in a state that is compatible with the continued existence of human civilization.
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