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Ray Kurzweil’s Double-Edged Absurdity

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    Technology isn’t a doubled-edged sword. At worst it is a 99% good sword and tiny 1% bad sword. Doubled-edged implies a 50/50 harm/goodness.

    [See the full post at: Ray Kurzweil’s Double-Edged Absurdity]


    I must disagree with you, or maybe agree with Kurzweil, on this topic.
    Having a healthy dose of skepticism towards new ideas is actually a good thing.
    Neither stories about flying out uteri stopped development of trains nor
    popularity of opinion that Newtonian physics described whole reality stopped Einstein.

    However blind trust in fruits progress gave us radium craze and cocaine cough syrup.
    We must move forward but it cannot be blind rush, otherwise we can do ourselves more harm than good.

    And to finish my argument, double edged sword don’t imply that there is exactly
    50% divide between positive and negative consequences, it means that something
    can be use for our benefit but if used without care it may as well hurt us.


    AI similar to trains cannot be stopped, but it is possible irrational anti-train propaganda delayed progress. The uptake of GM foods or research with embryonic stem cells are two modern examples regarding how progress can be delayed.

    Professor Yolanda Gil (Department of Computer Science at USC) said regarding AI fears: “My worry is that we’ll have constraints on the types of research we can do. I worry about fears causing limitations on what we can work on and that will mean missed opportunities.”

    A healthy dose of skepticism applied to everything is actually unhealthy. Skepticism should not be indiscriminately applied in a blanket manner. Skepticism should be based upon logic, rationality. It is unhealthy for me to think I am not typing with a keyboard, or to be skeptical about whether or not these words are not really words, likewise I should not worry about these words destroying the human race.

    Unwarranted skepticism can be an illness (did I lock the door, are my hands dirty despite being washed 20 times). I do not advocate blind trust, but it seems you advocate blind skepticism, although oddly you should (according to your “logic”) be skeptical about your comment but it appears you are not.

    I think two edges implies a 50/50 split, although in the case of a parallelogram the split is not 50/50. Swords (the double-edge we are considering) usually have two edges of equal length, thus it seems a 50/50 split is implied by Ray. The phrase is imprecise along with being unfounded, thus Ray should stop using it due to the impreciseness.

    My point is that harm factor in our technological world is evidentially very low, furthermore the harm factor is evidentially decreasing.

    Currently the blind trust resides in the minds of scaremongers, they blindly trust their fears to be valid despite a total lack of logic to support their blind fears. I wish they would show some skepticism regarding their fears because a massive dose of skepticism is very warranted regarding their unreasonable fears.


    He desires (consciously or otherwise) precisely that: Not to be associated with utopianism even while wanting to be optimistic.

    Probably trying to avoid historical associations and/or believing he can mitigate a wave of neo ludittes. (another example of misplaced fear? lol)

    Another frequent statement is “he’s no pollyanna”, this is a theme throughout his discourse. He seeks acceptance of radical technology while trying to sound realistic to the common folk, to whom artificial light may be the apogee of human achievement.

    There is no point though, he’s got this stuff committed to heart, down to the same jokes, he’s not changing it anytime soon, as long as it works to get interviews and talks. 🙂

    Also, how else could he brag about ‘working with the military on it’? And how else could the military justify ‘working on it’ in the first place?

    No fingers were hurt during the making of this post. (tho tendinitis may be a double-edged sword)

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