Technological Singularity

In a class I had taken previously we discussed the topic of technological singularity and I think it definitely has a place here in this blog. “Technological singularity is a hypothetical moment in time when artificial intelligence, human biological enhancement, or brain-computer interfaces will have progressed to the point of a greater-than-human intelligence, radically changing civilization, and perhaps human nature.” In this class we read a story that was published in 1989 called “The Gentle Seduction” by Marc Stiegler, in this story we followed a woman who was skeptical about technology and gradually became accepting of it. Little by little she would use body enhancing technology to cure the effects of aging, then to improve her mind, then to travel through space leaving her body behind, and eventually relinquishing her individual mind to join the collective mind of the rest of the human population. There was no death, you could engineer your children to be perfect instead of having a natural birth. I found this amazing because this story was written 25 years ago and there is already technology being developed that is in the story that didn’t exist then. Singularity is a concept I find terrifying, however, if the human race stayed away from everything we were frightened of we wouldn’t be living here in this country with the freedoms we enjoy every day. We would likely be ruled by one empire or another. A lot of the luxuries and scientific knowledge we have access to today would not be here and everyone may still be ruled by the beliefs of some religious empire that demonized and shunned scientific findings and progress. So even though singularity scares me, it also excites me and is something I hope I get to live to see. Hopefully, it’s a bright future and not one that resembles the matrix where we are farmed or where we are enslaved by the very machines we create. I would be excited to experience the moment when I can go to the store and take a pill that will cure all of my ailments by releasing a million tiny nano bots into my body. I want to be able to have instant access to knowledge i would like to know instead of having to look it up on my computer, having a way to just know and have that information somehow “beamed” to my mind. Nano bots have already been created. We have 3D printing and even 3D printed buildings. We have holograms that we can interact with. We have cellphones that connect us to every bit of information we could want that we keep in our pockets. All of this technology that we have has been developed in the last 40-50 years. I don’t think it’s too farfetched an idea that technological singularity can occur. It may not happen the way it is depicted in “A Gentle Seduction” but I believe that the point where technology starts developing at an exponential rate is not far off. It only takes about six months for the new model gadgets get announced from when the previous models were released and it seems like that time frame is getting shorter and shorter. I can’t wait. 


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