Wednesday, November 2

Little Green Book Review: The Singularity is Near

Well, the real reason I can't accept justdannie's proposal and avail myself of his, umm, unique and considerable talents, is that my heart belongs to the Instapundit. I just adore him. We are so sympatico. We are both uber-techno geeks, and nothing gets us high like a good shot of nanotech or longevity research. He always has the 411 on autonomous land vehicles and space elevators. And the best linkage for transhuman bioengineering and the approaching Singularity. And we both loathe the "bioethics" council with the fire of a thousand suns.
So, the instadude, himself the very epitome of coolsomeness, has links here and here and here on reviews of Kurzweil's book. A lot of the reviewers seem to have only read the first two or three chapters, on the acceleration of technology and the exponential curve leading to the Singularity.
But I am more interested in the reverse engineering of human intelligence. That is the tipping point for me in Kurzweil's argument. If we can reverse engineer the human brain, we can build autonomous self-replicating artificial intelligences, silicon intelligences that will surpass the current state of the art (ie human wetware) and bring on all the wonderful things promised in the book, virtual reality, space travel, nanotech, quantum computing, longevity, bioengineering.... that that is the part I am not totally conviced of. But I certainly hope Kurzweil is right, and I think there is a strong possibility that he is. If we can use nanotech to reverse engineer the human brain from the inside out, oh, what a wonderful world it will be.
Tune in for part two tomorrow, when i compare and contrast Peggy Noonan's depressing wheels falling off essay with the expanding world of science and technology, and explain why Peggy is full of it, at least on this issue.
This is a wonderful, wonderful book, and you all should read it!
The Singularity approaches! Get ready!

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