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David Brown

Registered: May 2009
Posts: 173

NKS, Wolfram, Kurzweil, and the Technological Singularity

If NKS and Wolfram help to transform our civilization will that be a good thing in the long run? Are you important because you have the computational equivalent of an immortal soul? Shall human empathy, spirituality, creativity, and intellect become obsolete and perhaps extinct in a few decades?
What is the human future? Should we fear the Technological Singularity? Are the cures brought by technologies eventually worse than the diseases brought by the lack of technologies? What are the most important questions that we should ask ourselves?
Often, you don’t know the right question to ask until you’re very close to the answer. — Steven Weinberg
Hell is Truth Seen Too Late. — Thomas Hobbes
Is NKS one of the greatest books ever written? Is NKS a significant contribution to the technologies of the Technological Singularity?
Many specific systems, such as cellular automata, studied in “A New Kind of Science” are likely to find their way into a new generation of technological systems. — Stephen Wolfram
By 2045 we will have expanded the intelligence of our machine civilization by a factor of a billion. That will be truly a Singularity. — Ray Kurzweil
Wisdom comes by disillusionment. — George Santayana
If the Singularity cannot be prevented or confined, just how bad could the Post-Human era be? Well … pretty bad. — Vernor Vinge
Nature never breaks her own laws. — Leonardo da Vinci
What do the laws of Darwinian progress in technology and biology imply for the human species?
Make your own bible. — Emerson
Will the superhuman intelligences make their own bibles beneficial for people? No matter how the Technological Singularity begins, shall its development follow Darwinian evolution to a favorable conclusion for people?
The paradigm-shift rate, the rate of adopting new ideas, is actually doubling every ten years according to our models. — Ray Kurzweil
We will succeed in reverse-engineering the human brain in the 2020s. — Ray Kurzweil
Progress in science and technology is exponential — not linear. — Ray Kurzweil
http://www.ted.com/talks Ray Kurzweil on how technology shall transform us (Nov. 13, 2006)
What might be some of the greatest insights from the human experience?
The greatest discovery is discovering what people what. — Edison
One of the keys to success in business is always looking at things from the other person’s viewpoint. — Henry Ford
Only the inadequate student fails to exceed the teacher. — Leonardo da Vinci
Will the needs and desires of people become as insignificant as what mice and hamsters want? Will the human viewpoint become totally irrelevant in terms of the superhuman viewpoint? Shall beings with superhuman intelligence teach themselves so much that the human brain becomes what the dodo brain now is? Shall the epigrams of Goethe, Emerson, and Einstein ring uselessly as the human species is swept into the Technological Singularity?
Doubt grows with knowledge. — Goethe
The years teach much that the days never know. — Emerson
Technological progress is like an axe in the hands of a pathological criminal. — Einstein
If you are confronted by an important decision, a strategic necessity, or a great opportunity, then should you carefully study the epigrams of Goethe, Emerson, and Einstein? Who are your best roles models? What are your best sources of knowledge? What is the best general strategy for solving problems? Are the problems you are trying to solve really the most important problems to work on? Is your current philosophy of life really the best philosophy of life for you? What are your goals, motivations, purposes, problems, opportunities, likes, and dislikes? Have you carefully examined your assumptions and your sins? What is virtue? What is evil? How can you find truth and avoid falsehood? Is Crick’s “What Mad Pursuit” the greatest book ever written? What is consciousness in terms of molecular psychology?
What are the three most important things in life? What are the three most important things in your life? What the three most important things in the lives of all the people of planet Earth?
What are the three most important questions in life? What are the three most important questions in your life? What are the three most important questions in the lives of all the people of planet Earth?
What are the three most interesting questions in biology? What are the three most interesting questions in physics? What are the three most interesting questions in information theory? What are the three most interesting questions in technology? How can mammals be rejuvenated? How can all mammalian diseases be cured? How can superhuman intelligence be created?
Simplify, simplify, simplify. — Thoreau
Is it better to know a few, simple important things than a great many irrelevant or unimportant things? If you are confronted with any object, entity, or process, then should you ask: What is its essence? What is good about it? What is bad about it? Why is it important? Should you focus on the important and try to avoid the unimportant?
Are you important because you have the computational equivalent of an immortal soul? Should we try to communicate together because both of us are important? Is the best communication simple and important to all the communicators?
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. — Leonardo da Vinci
Who might be some excellent role models? Could the answer be Socrates, Leonardo da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin, and Francis Crick?
I can easily believe that your theory is wrong, but I find it almost impossible to believe that my theory is wrong. — Francis Crick
Only the inadequate student fails to exceed the teacher. — Leonardo da Vinci
Darwinian evolution is smarter than you are. — Francis Crick
Are we doomed to be inadequate students of the Darwinian evolution of technology and biological organisms? Are questions almost always more important than answers? Have we plumbed the depths of the genius of Einstein? What might be Einstein’s 10 most important insights about physics? What might be Einstein’s 10 most important insights about life?
I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone, best both for the body and the soul. — Einstein
Imagination is more important than knowledge. — Einstein
Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. — Einstein
Does every true assertion of religion have to be compatible with science? Does the best science need empathy, compassion, and spiritual communion?
All problems have solutions. — Ray Kurzweil
Most problems do not have solutions, but there are always ways of making the best of a bad situation. — Dave Brown
The Berserkers have been with me for forty years, and we're not done yet. — Fred Saberhagen
The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. — Einstein
I find it difficult enough to learn something I’m interested in — I find it nearly impossible to learn something I’m not interested in. — James D. Watson
What could be more foolish than to base one’s entire view of life on ideas that, however plausible at the time, now appear to be quite erroneous? And what would be more important than to find our true place in the universe by removing one by one these unfortunate vestiges of earlier beliefs? Yet it is clear that some mysteries have still to be explained scientifically. While these remain unexplained, they can serve as an easy refuge for religious superstition. It seemed to me of the first importance to identify these unexplained areas of knowledge and to work toward their scientific understanding, whether such explanations would turn out to confirm existing religious beliefs or to refute them. — Francis Crick, “What Mad Pursuit”, p. 11
Is the Technological Singularity inevitable because of economic and military competition and, above all, the triumph of curiosity? Shall thinkers like Wolfram and Kurzweil shape the future, no matter what may happen?

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David Brown

Registered: May 2009
Posts: 173

Technology and questions

Steve Jobs is never afraid to knife the baby. — Mike Daisey
Science works. It’s the best way we know of solving problems. — Sydney Brenner
Kubrick’s vision seemed to be that humans are doomed, whereas Clarke’s is that humans are moving on to a better stage of evolution. — Marvin Minsky, “The Emotion Machine”, 2007
http://books.google.com/books?isbn=0743276647 “The Emotion Machine”
Most of the great successes of exact science have ultimately come from finding mathematical formulas to describe the evolution of a system. But this requires that the evolution be computationally reducible, so that the computational work can just be reduced to evaluation of a formula. “A New Kind of Science” shows however that among most systems computational reducibility is rare, and computational irreducibility is the norm. This explains some of the observed limitations of existing science, and shows that there are cases where theoretical prediction is effectively not possible, and that observation or experiment must inevitably be used. — Stephen Wolfram
According to Warren Buffet, one of the problems with contemporary academic business administration programs is too much focus on what is measurable instead of what is meaningful. “Warren Buffett has observed that there is no need—indeed it is positively deleterious— for an investor to try constantly to come up with new ideas. He has said that it would better if the newly minted graduate of a course on investments were issued a punch card with twenty holes in it, or even fewer, which would represent all the investment concepts he would ever be entitled to try…” (p. 24, “The Midas Touch” by John Train).
http://books.google.com/books?isbn=1897597290 “The Midas Touch”, 2003
In the simplest terms of action, are there two main things to know: what to do and what not to do? If we think of physics in terms of the electromagnetic, strong, weak, and gravitational interactions, then might we say that physics is 95% electromagnetism, 2% strong force, 2% weak force, and 1% gravitation? In any case, is an understanding of electromagnetism and computational structure essential for understanding reality? If we believe Buffett and Wolfram then should we try to work within our circles of competence and attempt to be cautious and mentally flexible in dealing with computational irreducibility? Does problem solving sometimes require looking at things from two relevant but basically different viewpoints?
Consider some hypotheses:
Reductionist Formulas + Emergent Irreducibilities = Conceptual Boundaries
Should you try to organize your life according to principles and goals? And, if so, how? Human short-term memory can contain 7 ± 3 items. Thus you might periodically put, for examples, 4 basic principles and 3 basic goals into your short-term memory. Consider some slogans:
KISS — Keep it surprisingly simple. (Or, Keep it simple, Stupid!)
DOPE — Discover other people’s emotions.
SITWET — See it their way, every time.
IBIS — Imitate best-in-show.
What should you ask yourself? How, when, and where can you use your talent, experience, motivation, knowledge, and opportunity? How can I find a mentor? How I become part of a self-help network? What experiences do I have and what experiences do I need? What are my basic motivations? What knowledge do I have now? What new knowledge should I acquire? What are my opportunities in business and other domains? Which opportunities are best suited to my situation? How shall technology affect my life over the next 10 years? According to S. George Djorgovski in his talk “Evolving Science and Technology in Cyberspace”, one important question for us is : ”What comes after the Web and Internet?”
http://tedxcaltech.com 14 Jan. 2011 Feynman Influence
Even the shrewdest men are apt to be wildly astray if they prophesy so much as ten years ahead. — Bertrand Russell, “Unpopular Essays”, 1950, p. 162
http://books.google.com/books?isbn=0415473705 “Unpopular Essays"
What are the 10 greatest questions in science, technology, and the psychology of consciousness? What are the 10 greatest insights from Archimedes, Leonardo da Vinci, Newton, Gauss, Maxwell, Einstein, Fermi, Pauli, Feynman, Edison, Tesla, Mendeleev, Robert Robinson, Linus Pauling, Darwin, Pasteur, Ben Franklin, John von Neumann, Stephen Wolfram, Ray Kurzweil, Francis Crick, and Sydney Brenner? Does ultimate truth unify science, technology, art, and religion? What are the 10 greatest questions that any human being can possibly ask? Is life a trade-off between meaning and purpose, on the one hand, and possibility and causality, on the other hand? What meanings and purposes might optimize consciousness? In terms of science and technology, what might be the possibilities for consciousness, meaning, purpose, and achievement? In terms of consciousness, what is real and important and what is unreal and unimportant? What are the basic possibilities for the origin and evolution of life? Translated from the Aramaic, Jesus of Nazareth said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” Translated from the Arabic, Mohammed of Mecca said, “I am the last and greatest prophet of God.” Are the 2 preceding statements profound clues for understanding human psychology? What is the best way to organize thought, action, and knowledge? What are the 10 most important truths, goals, and hopes for people? What is life beyond causality and randomness? What is the molecular psychology of belief in God? What is the molecular psychology of belief in prophecy?

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Old Post 04-23-2011 07:38 PM
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Paul C. Meehan
PCM Solutions Ltd
Dublin, Ireland

Registered: Mar 2011
Posts: 24

Re: NKS, Wolfram, Kurzweil, and the Technological Singularity

Originally posted by David Brown Shall thinkers like Wolfram and Kurzweil shape the future, no matter what may happen?

In Jungian psychometric terms I reckon Wolfram is an INTP (the architect of ideas) and Kurzweil is an ENTP (the visionary). They'd make great pals if they're not already.

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David Brown

Registered: May 2009
Posts: 173

Various ideas on the future and the Technological Singularity

To me the Singularity comes down to making, or becoming, things that are smarter than human. — Vernor Vinge
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWnMw7Zr8w8 Vernor Vinge on the Singularity — part 1 of 2, 2008, YouTube
I think that the Singularity is scary because of the prospect of sudden onset. — Vernor Vinge
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jD5phhIu5fQ Tech4thought Interviews Vernor Vinge part 4, 2010, YouTube
Transparency is scary. … It’s unpredictable. — Morgan Spurlock
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6c0VtOdibcI Morgan Spurlock: The greatest TED talk ever sold — YouTube
… eventually I had to create a whole new kind of science. … Given our new kind of science, is there a general way to use it to make technology? … In a sense we can use the computational universe to get mass customized creativity. … Will we find the whole of physics? … I think computation is destined to be the defining idea of our future. — Stephen Wolfram
http://www.ted.com/talks/stephen_wo...everything.html Stephen Wolfram: Computing a theory of everything; TED talk posted Apr. 2010
I am sure that the hardware will be there once we figure out what we need to do. … At some point, we’re going to have to look past charge-based electronics. … There’s still a lot of cheese down that tunnel. … How do we make these machines much more aware of who we are and what we do? — Justin Rattner, Intel’s Chief Technology Officer, 2009
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvnnlVQseKA Into the Future: Man and Machine, 2009, YouTube
I discovered the computer when I was twelve … and I had this idea that the heart of human intelligence is pattern recognition. … What our brains are doing is shuffling around information. … Biological evolution is a million times slower than technological evolution. … We are literally going to transcend our biological substrate. — Ray Kurzweil, 2009
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QROMNOEI3PQ Ray Kurzweil — Futurist, 2009, YouTube
To what extent are we the authors, the creators, of our own experiences? How much are these predetermined by the brains or senses we are born with, and to what extent do we shape our brains through experience? — Oliver Sacks, “The Mind’s Eye”, p. 202
… Watson and Crick destroyed vitalism and turned genetics into information technology, just a branch of computer science. And it looks to me that embryology is going the same way, at a rather more complicated level. — Richard Dawkins
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDdG3VfxoiY PZ Myers Discussion (9/10) — Richard Dawkins, YouTube
The canon of computer science prematurely froze the model of computation based on technology that was available in 1950, and nature is a much more powerful computer than that. … Twenty years from now, we’ll make Star Trek replicators that make anything. … we are now today in the minicomputer era of digital fabrication. … the transition from 2D to 3D, from programming bits to programming atoms, turns the ends of Moore’s Law scaling from the ultimate bug to the ultimate feature. … we are just at the edge of this digital revolution in fabrication, where the output of computation programs the physical world. — Neil Gershenfeld
http://www.ted.com/talks/neil_gersh...n_fab_labs.html Neil Gershenfeld on Fab Labs, 2006
… whatever brilliant ideas you have or hear … the opposite may also be true. — Derek Sivers
http://www.ted.com/talks/derek_sive..._different.html Derek Sivers: Weird, or just different?, Ted talk posted 2010
Human knowledge is doubling every 14 months. … we will have all the models and simulations of the human brain within 20 years. … By 2029 … we will have completed the reverse engineering of the human brain. … According to my models, 15 years from now we will be adding more than a year every year not just to infant life expectancy but to your life expectancy. — Ray Kurzweil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43zo82W7aPI Authors@Google: Ray Kurzweil, 2009, YouTube
“A New Kind of Science” describes a vast array of discoveries made by thinking in terms of programs — and how these discoveries force a rethinking of the foundations of many existing areas of science. … Many specific systems, such as cellular automata, studied in “A New Kind of Science” are likely to find their way into a new generation of technological systems. — Stephen Wolfram
The problem with computer programming is that the computer does exactly what you tell it. — Ronald Graham
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_YPQpf9Cok John Conway on Games and Puzzles, 2011, YouTube
Does the future consist of Internet —> Robotnet —> Thinkingnet with robotics and digital replication integrating into the Internet, followed by consciousness integrating into the Internet? Wolfram Alpha is an innovative approach to computing answers — will the future bring Wolfram Alpha —> Robot Alpha —> Thinking Alpha? In other words, will there be successors to Wolfram Alpha consisting of conscious robots smoothly integrated into the Internet? Are we developing a computational paradigm that encompasses robotics, computer technology, biotechnology, and perhaps consciousness? How is computation related to organization? Is an individual human life a form of both computation and organization within a social environment? Are there many valid analogies between your individual life and a corporate organization?
Very few organizations know why they do what they do. … Why does your organization exist? … People don’t buy what you do — they buy why you do it. … The goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe. … And what you do simply proves what you believe. — Simon Sinek
http://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sine...ire_action.html Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action, TED talk posted 2010
http://www.ted.com/talks/pattie_mae...ixth_sense.html Pattie Maes and Pranav Mistry demo SixthSense, TED talk, posted 2009
http://www.ted.com/talks/skylar_tib...themselves.html Skylar Tibbits: Skylar Tibbits: Can we make things that make themselves? TED Talk, posted 2011

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Old Post 08-30-2011 12:35 AM
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David Brown

Registered: May 2009
Posts: 173

Purposes, mechanisms, and the Technological Singularity

What will this program do after a million steps? … A lot of these programs … have this phenomenon of computational irreducibility. … As more and more technology gets found by basically just mining the computational universe, it’s going to be less and less human-understandable. … Nature isn’t particularly human-understandable. — Stephen Wolfram
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jyj7TUUBNIw Singularity Summit 2009 — Stephen Wolfram P2, YouTube
By the time you get to 1%, you are only 7 doublings away from 100%. — Ray Kurzweil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VrXsF-sRwCE Singularity Summit 2009 — Ray Kurzweil P4, YouTube
I’ll wager two thousand one hundred twenty-seven dollars. — Watson the IBM computer system
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xm8iUjzgPTg Watson Jeopardy Full Final Game (Day 3 Feb16), YouTube
Note that it’s the model of the future that breaks down, not necessarily the future itself. — Eliezer Yudkowsky
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDhdt58ySJA Eliezer Yudkowsky — Introducing the “Singularity”: Three Major Schools of Thought (1/4), YouTube
… the tech world is best understood not as a business cycle but as a messianic movement. — Peter Hirshberg
http://www.ted.com/talks/peter_hirs...nd_the_web.html Peter Hirshberg on TV and the web; TED talk posted 2008
It’s too easy to dump the data into a computer. — Jeremy Siegel
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mT-JOqTIMk Jeremy Siegel – Efficient Market Theory and the Recent Financial Crisis, YouTube
… the really big ideas carry 95% of the freight. — Charles Munger
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRKzJlydWO8 Charles Munger Speech USC – May 2007 (part 2 of 5), YouTube
… forecast is different from prophecy, because the function of a good prophet is to mend people’s ways, to make them improve themselves and to behave better. — Paul Streeten
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-vJkyaABfs Paul Streeten: Technological Nightmares, Part 2, YouTube
We have technology that we are outsourcing our intelligence to. … Reading and writing is outsourcing of memory. … What we are going through now is outsourcing of bigger and bigger hunks of our cognition. — Vernon Vinge
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWNKVCIkNEE Vernor Vinge — Singularity Summit 2008 (Part 1) YouTube
What should human purposes be if the Technological Singularity is near in time? Is a purpose a set of mechanisms within molecular psychology? What should be the purpose of human life?
… the question of purpose, which doesn’t necessarily have to have an answer, is one that leaps to the front of the human mind — whether it’s appropriate or not. — Richard Dawkins
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mT4EWCRfdUg The Purpose of Purpose — Richard Dawkins, YouTube, 2009
What should be the main purpose of technology? Is everything a form of natural computation or technological computation? What is technology? Is music a form of technology?
Music is medicine. Music changes us. — Robert Gupta
http://www.ted.com/talks/robert_gupta.html Robert Gupta: Music is medicine, music is sanity, TED talk posted 2010
We bond when we sing together, sharing the specific affects and connections of a song; but bonding is deeper, more primal, if we dance together, coordinating our bodies and not just our voices. — Oliver Sacks, “Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain”, pp. 381-382
Is religion a form of technology promoting beliefs about purposes that have Darwinian survival value?
I don’t like science and religion hyphened together as an academic discipline. It doesn’t seem to me to make sense. … I like the metaphor of windows … We are living in a house and there’s a big universe, and we look out through two different windows. You can either look out through the science window and see a lot of things or you look out through the religion window and you see another lot of things, but you can’t look though two windows at the same time. So that’s my image of the sort of relation between science and religion. … Religion is just telling us how little we know about the purpose of things, and science is just telling us little we know about the mechanics of things. — Freeman Dyson
http://www.uctv.tv/search-details.aspx?showID=16939 “Nukes and Genomes” with Freeman Dyson & Bob Kittle, 2009, UCTV
Any time you are playing a positive-sum game, it pays to be nice. — Vernor Vinge
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwca0nLEOvM Vernor Vinge — Singularity Summit 2008 (Part 4) YouTube
Everything affects everything else. Nothing stands alone. — Jim Rohn
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShW7H5ApJF4 Jim Rohn Everything Affects Everything Else, YouTube, 2009
Enron did not lack for enabling attorneys. Nor will a future Enron lack for enabling attorneys. — Charles Munger
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6RS_PqudxU A Conversation with Charlie Munger (U of Michigan)- 2010, YouTube
Defining your circle of competence is the most important aspect of investing. — Warren Buffett
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2a9Lx9J8uSs Warren Buffett speaks to UGA students, YouTube
You are a disaster if you don’t know the edge of your own competency. — Charles Munger
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4CmboV74ek Charlie Munger – Talk at Caltech-2008, YouTube
You use free as a technique when you want to get universal coverage. — Marc Andreesen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1UAy3HgUEI Marc Andreesen On the Importance of Free, YouTube, 2009
Everybody sells. … You sell every day of your life. — Zig Ziglar
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cRMogDrHnMQ Zig Ziglar – Attitude Makes All The Difference, YouTube, 2008
… what the best companies do is they provide a stark idea of what their company is and isn’t. … I think the best companies tend to be polarizing. — Marc Andreesen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Q0LgL36Jd0 Marc Andreesen – Defining the Voice of a Start-up, YouTube, 2010
Do purpose, mechanism, and technology depend essentially upon vision, simplicity, unity, focus, money, and selling? Is money driving us inevitably toward the Technological Singularity? Are we oversold or undersold on the Singularity? Are we within our circle of competence if we evaluate the Singularity?

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Old Post 10-06-2011 01:03 AM
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David Brown

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Technological Singularity, accelerating change, and the future of planet Earth

Learning of all sorts will be increasingly important as computer power and robot programs grow. — Hans Moravec, 1997
http://www.transhumanist.com/volume1/moravec.htm “When will computer hardware match the human brain?”
According to the Wikipedia entry for “Accelerating change”, “In futures studies and the history of technology, “accelerating change” is a perceived increase in the rate of technological (and sometimes social and cultural) progress throughout history, which may suggest faster and more profound change in the future. While many have suggested accelerating change, the popularity of this theory in modern times is closely associated with various advocates of the technological singularity, such as Vernor Vinge and Ray Kurzweil.”
The capacity of the world network will continue to grow, and new abilities, such as unobtrusive language translation, intelligent search, and helpful artificial personalities, will become integral. “Tribes of common interest” will share not just text, audio, and video, but full sensory environments. — Hans Moravec, 2000, “Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind”, p. 138
http://books.google.com/books?isbn=0195136306 “Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind”
Whatever you do it’s going to be damned hard — otherwise it would have been done. … What do you really care about? And make sure you can do it. — Donald Glaser, Aug. 2008
http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_pri...-interview.html (nobelprize glaser interview)
Out there in the computational universe there’s in effect a whole seething world of creativity, ready for us to tap. — Stephen Wolfram, Oct. 2011
http://blog.stephenwolfram.com/ Oct. 18, 2011 Imagining the Future with A New Kind of Science
What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals. — Thoreau
In real life, the best ideas are cross-connected as can be. — Marvin Minsky
http://www.media.mit.edu/~minsky/pa...rsCantThink.txt “Why People Think Computers Can’t”, 1982
… most scientific laws are not physical laws, but result from the emergent properties of a large number of events at a finer level. — Ray Kurzweil, Oct. 19, 2011
http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/guest/27263 Kurzweil Responds: Don’t Underestimate the Singularity
We’ve seen smooth exponential growth in the price-performance and capacity of computing devices since the 1890 U. S. census, in the capacity of wireless data networks for over 100 years, and in biological technologies since before the genome project. There are dozens of other examples. This exponential progress applies to every aspect of the effort to reverse-engineer the human brain. — Ray Kurzweil, Aug. 20, 2010
http://www.kurzweilai.net/ray-kurzw...stand-the-brain Ray Kurzweil responds to “Ray Kurzweil does not understand the brain.”
… we are now on the edge of change comparable to the rise of human life on earth. The precise cause of this change is the imminent creation by technology of entities with greater than human intelligence. — Vernor Vinge
http://mindstalk.net/vinge/vinge-sing.html Vernor Vinge on the Singularity
It’s 2040 and nerds in old folks homes are wandering around, scratching their heads, and ask plaintively, “But … but, where’s the Singularity?” — Vernor Vinge
http://rohan.sdsu.edu/faculty/vinge/longnow/ What If the Singularity Does NOT Happen
Think about the Internet. No one knew what the Internet was going to become and how much it would become part of all of our lives and how useful it would be. When we have questions that’s where we go now. Something like Watson has that same promise. It’s transformative in the sense that you don’t even know yet what it’s going to become. — David Gondek
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lI-M7O_bRNg IBM Watson: Final Jeopardy! And the Future of Watson – YouTube
Earth cannot escape the transformation forever. The potent process that converts normal space and matter into cyberspace will eventually become too subtle to be resisted by the hobbled, slow-evolving robots defending the planet. Boring old Earth also will suddenly be swallowed by the cyberspace. Afterwards its transformed substance will host astronomically more meaningful activity than before. — Hans Moravec, 2000, “Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind”, p. 167
Even if the singularity does not happen, we are going to have to put up with singularity enthusiasms for a very long time. — Vernor Vinge
http://spectrum.ieee.org/biomedical...the-singularity “Signs of the Singularity”, 2008

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Old Post 12-20-2011 01:06 PM
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Todd Rowland
Wolfram Research

Registered: Oct 2003
Posts: 113

If NKS brings about the singularity, then one would expect that it would happen in discrete jumps. An unexpected use for rule 30 is found after one is found for rule 73 or something like that.

In that case the image of "accelerating change" is not applicable, and Kurzweil-style modeling of technological change would not be able to predict when or describe how it would happen.

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