Thursday, September 04, 2003,1282,43278,00.html

Ray continues to flummox me. Among the things you'll appreciate, Rob-o...

"Kurzweil's latest work -- given the ominous title The Singularity is Near -- forecasts a century that he claims will see the merging of "biological" and "artificial" intelligence to the point that, by 2099, the two distinctions will have conjoined and perhaps even fused.

At the core of Kurzweil's thesis, summarized in his précis of Singularity, is what he argues is a double-exponential growth in technology to date..."

"Most people have a linear view of the future," he said. "People look at the 21st century, and they expect 100 years of progress at today's rate of progress. But because we're doubling the rate of progress every 10 years, we're actually looking at 20,000 years of progress during the 21st century. That's quite a difference in outlook. You get to a point where the rate of progress is so fast that it's virtually a rupture in the fabric of human history."

And this relates directly to some things we've discussed ...

"It's a continuum. If you look at how computers are designed today, human designers specify the top couple levels of parameters," he said. "But then the next 12 levels of design are done automatically by computers. Then the computers are assembled by computerized systems. It's very much a collaboration. If you compare that with how computers were first built, it was done entirely by hand."

Other interesting things. And here's a link to Bill Joy's anti-tech manifesto, if you or anyone else reading this hasn't read it, it's required reading.

Lots of commentary on this article, if you were unaware - many people taking sides with Joy or Kurzweil, ironic given the fact that they're both brilliant and both very similar thinkers in reality.  

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