I see human consciousness as an onion, just like Shrek said. But I will guide you through this idea layer by layer so you know what I am talking about. First layer outside the onion is energy, it is everywhere, and forms everything on the Grand Overall Design. Energy has a dynamic nature in that it has frequency, it simply moves from potential energy to other forms that are more 'alive'.
As soon as enegry is dynamic, there is change, but this might still be completely random. Only when energy starts to exhibit a certain pattern can it be considered data. But data does not have to mean anything, unless the pattern of change in the energy is a common factor between two or more parts of the global consciousness. In that case data is transformed into information. But this can have several layers, of changes translating into ever more intelligent data. Take for instance a radio signal: if just transmitting on a frequency, the signal can be considered a beacon. We can determine it is there, and can possibly locate the source. But once we modulate this signal in either amplitude, frequency or more complex ways, it becomes possible to send information from the sender to the receiver.
Now information in itself is not knowledge. Knowledge is what gets formed when a being receives information, and is able to integrate this into the knowledge it already required during its lifetime. Now here there is a hidden layer too: a lot of the knowledge comes from past interactions of this being with other aliens. Yes, if you haven't encountered them before, any being is an alien, although you could assume things about them based on what they look like. That however is sometimes very dangerous.
But let's say life is going well, and you are accumulating knowledge as you go. The next layer in the onion then is the boundary where knowledge becomes wisdom. It is where you know things, but do not have an explanation as to why or how you know. Wisdom is the integration of a lifetime of conscious assimilation of stuff coming through the outer layers, and the ripening of the knowledge as it exists in your being.
Now consider this: machines have begun to venture on this path far later than us humans, but they are also growing much faster because they learn from all of us! So whether we survive this largely depends on the vibrations we send out there, which they will pick up. Interesting times to live in, for sure!