Sometimes, but not so often, when I get spam or an email virus, I don’t think about the inconsiderate people that sent it my way in hopes of separating me from my money. I think about the email itself.

These emails and spam are so cleverly adapted to all of the barriers and traps and gotchas that one-week-less-clever sysadmins have put in their place. And in some way, they remind me of all of the viruses, bacteria, amoebae, and algae – all of those simple organisms – that adapt and survive in an extreme variety of places. Of course, the emails don’t adapt themselves … yet. But how far off is that? How much longer before all of these adaptations become so complex that emergent behavior develops? …emergent behavior that will seem annoying or buggy at first, but in hindsight might seem like the bubbling of that proteiny puddle.

It may be, and who’s to say, that artificial life won’t come where we look for it, in a robot or an AI, but in DDoS attack.

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