Tresuiri's Reviews > The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology

The Singularity Is Near by Ray Kurzweil
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Apr 24, 2012

really liked it

I enjoyed Mr. Kurzweil's world view, it was a pleasure to pick up this tome to finish from so long ago. I look forward to his recent publication: How to Create a Mind. This book has a broad futurist concept, and a realistic or you might say pragmatic approach to incremental technological growth. I agree with many of the author's premises asserted in the book (i.e. with sufficiently complexity, artificial intelligence could be conscious) , but I disagree on some of the finer points. Some of the forecasts seemed to aggressive, even if the latest of the baby-boomers took care of themselves very well, I don't think there is much of any chance they're going to see the singularity. When I saw the Big Bang Theory television episode referencing the singularity, I immediately thought of this book. Although I am hopeful that we might see it in my generation, I am increasingly doubtful; and I think it will come in my kid's generation. Honestly I am worried about the grey goo problem, but I don't see any good solution to the problem. The solution proposed by the author is only effective where there is a well regulated industry. This seems unlikely to me. The solution to the hostile strong AI problem also has this same issue. I think it is a fair chance that someone who is trying to build a strong AI will omit the precautions and doom us all. Intentional or otherwise, quite a depressing thought. If you're looking for a fairly well reasoned book on what lay in our future collectively as a human society, I recommend picking up this book. I thought it was a good read, and would consider picking it up again for a reread at some future point.
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Reading Progress

April 24, 2012 – Started Reading
April 24, 2012 – Shelved
January 15, 2014 – Finished Reading

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