Radical Evolution

Topics: Technological singularity, Transhumanism, Raymond Kurzweil Pages: 4 (1414 words) Published: May 2, 2013
“Radical Evolution”

In Joel Garreau’s book “Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies- and What It Means to Be Human” Garreau discusses the concept “singularity” along with views from Vernon Vinge, Ray Kurzweil and others. Singularity is this drastic change that will take place during a period of accelerating change in particular with technology. “The Curve implies one of the all-time changes in the rules. Those who study it call it “The Singularity”. (p.67) Garreau covers three different scenarios of singularity one he calls it heaven, which is viewed as something good taking place for humanity. Another scenario is if technology gets into the wrong hands and this scenario he calls it Hell. Lastly he discusses a possible scenario where people can alter conditions leading to singularity which he calls this prevail. Garreau first gives Vinge’s on take on the idea of singularity as he describes it as “huge but unpredictable social change driven by The Curve” (p. 71). Vinge alerts us that greater than human intelligence is upon us very soon. And he even compares it to when human life on earth started. Vinge who is a professor in the specializing in the field of Mathematics and Computer Science is able to give us a math and physics approach to the concept of singularity. He explains “singularities are the pointes where everything stops making sense. In math it is a point where you are dividing through zero, for example. The result is so whacked out as to be meaningless” (p. 72). Vinge also compares singularity to a black hole where light can not escape gravity and the laws of physics no longer apply there. Singularity is not an easy concept to grasp because it is a time when one is not able to escape or understand what is going on or what will happen next. This scenario we would be out of control.

Garreau discusses several scenarios how singularity can occur: 1.) supercomputers causes humanity to cross the line over...
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