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The long-term future focuses on possible ways in which the future of humanity may unfold over long timescales.

Bostrom's typology of possible scenarios

Nick Bostrom has identified four broad possibilities for the future of humanity.[1]

First, humans may go prematurely extinct. Since the universe will eventually become inhospitable, extinction is inevitable in the very long run. However, it is also plausible that people will die out far before this deadline.

Second, human civilization may plateau, reaching a level of technological advancement beyond which no further advancement is feasible.

Third, human civilization may experience recurrent collapse, undergoing repeated declines or catastrophes that prevent it from moving beyond a certain level of advancement.

Fourth, human civilization may advance so significantly as to become nearly unrecognizable. Bostrom conceptualizes this scenario as a “posthuman” era where people have developed significantly different cognitive abilities, population sizes, body types, sensory or emotional experiences, or life expectancies.


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