This is insane. The entire premise the system is built on is "bigger is better". But everything in modern society proves that axiom to be fundamentally destructive to human life.
You propose building a system with no internal compas, no controls - either internal or external, no means for communication with its "handlers", and no actual understanding of what it's doing in and to the world, as the path towards an intelligent system whose entire and only mandate is to occupy infinitely increasing space in the world. In what reality does this work out in humanity's favor?
We have to stop hiding behind "pure science" ideology when designing sytems that are intended to occupy our actual reality.
This is a fucked up design theory in that the "reward function" essentially requires the AI to destroy or absorb all that takes up space outside of itself. The fact that no one saw or felt the need to consider the real-world ramifications of this theory is... mindblowing.