Best reasons why the often discussed Singularity is NOT so far fetched after all
The Internet has become an extension of the human psyche… What is so intriguing about this interplay between technology and human imagination is that we are dealing with the equation: ‘As I imagine, so I become’ — and this is the very essence of magic.
Singularities have occurred before. Kevin Kelly’s new book What Technology Wants cites the invention of language as an epochal-shifting singularity. Fifty thousand years ago, language changed the operation system of the brain and allowed it to think with purpose and deliberation, says Kelly. Within 1500 generations we took over the planet, according to the book. The book lucidly explains how the world and our understanding of it after language was unfathomable those that came before it.
In the 1960s, the consciousness movement intersected with the computer industry in silicon valley. Through LSD-tinged eyes, some say computers were reconceived as tools for personal liberation, extension of the human nervous system. Everyone should read John Markoff’s What The Doormouse Said. Today we do our mindwork in a shared interconnected space with 1.5 billion other minds. This would have sounded like lunacy to anyone not on LSD in the past, and yet today we take it for granted. This is a singularity in itself.
Technology is an accelerated form of evolution, a natural extension of it. This acceleration has been exponential, in spite of this being counterintuitive to our linear thinking. The extrapolations made by Kurzweil, when seen in this context, are not just likely, but inevitable… and when you consider things are astonishing as the invention of the language, and the computer revolution, “things indistinguishable from magic” are engineered into existence all the time. We are simply moving towards greater levels of complexity and organization. The speed is such that now it happens within our lifetimes.