Singularity

The idea, widely held by the Extropian crowd, that the curve of the total knowledge of humankind will continue to accelerate (Knowledge Growth) until it goes roughly vertical, at which point we will transcend humanity itself. Or something like that.

Here's the Vernor Vinge essay: http://www.ugcs.caltech.edu/~phoenix/vinge/vinge-sing.html

Robin Hanson coordinated some critical discussion among 13 people (in 1998): http://hanson.gmu.edu/vi.html

http://www.aleph.se/Trans/Global/Singularity/

http://www.extropy.org/ideas/lextropicon.html

John Robb has a weblog about it. http://singularity.manilasites.com/

Ray Kurzweil refers to it heavily in the AgeOfSpiritualMachines. And has a website to go with it.

John Smart has a site http://www.singularitywatch.com/

Also associated with Hans Moravec, see http://www.kurzweilai.net/meme/frame.html?main=/articles/art0151.html

http://fusionanomaly.net/singularity.html

Terence McKenna was into this as well, targeting 2012 as the expected date for Timewave Zero (based, among other things, on the Mayan calendar).

  • note many freaking things are predicted for this year

Others think the whole thing is a crock: "GeekRapture".

Cosma Shalizi says we already had one: the Industrial Revolution. Creation of vast, inhuman distributed systems of information-processing, communication and control, "the coldest of all cold monsters"? Check; we call them "the self-regulating market system" and "modern bureaucracies" (public or private), and they treat men and women, even those whose minds and bodies instantiate them, like straw dogs.


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