Immortality will be Delivered by the Singularity Say Scientists

Immortality will be Delivered by the Singularity Say Scientists

You may never have heard of the Singularity, but many scientists call its advent “inevitable,” and it has the potential-some would even say the promise-to deliver the human race to immortality. In order to understand how we can become immortal via the Singularity, we first have to understand what it is. According to Ray Kurzweil, author of The Singularity is Near and co-founder of Singularity University:

The Singularity is an era in which our intelligence will become increasingly nonbiological and trillions of times more powerful than it is today—the dawning of a new civilization that will enable us to transcend our biological limitations and amplify our creativity.

To put this in layperson’s terms, the Singularity is the exact moment in time when computers, in all their incarnations, become smarter than people. When this occurs, computers will be able to grow exponentially upon themselves and reproduce themselves, and their intelligence, billions of times faster than human intelligence can grow.

It sounds identical to the plot of many science fiction films, but rest assured, real scientists are feverishly working toward making this rather far-out sounding vision a reality. At Singularity University, computer scientists, top entrepreneurs, and giant corporations come together to expedite the moment of Singularity via intensive study led by top technology evangelists and experts. It should come as no surprise to anyone that one of the corporate founders of Singularity University is Google.

The Singularity University website makes their mission sound very rosy and altruistic. “Singularity University utilizes accelerating technologies to address humanity’s hardest problems,” claims their website. The University works on a global scale:

We travel the world to facilitate disruptive thinking. Singularity University has a number of global initiatives that provide a multidisciplinary approach for understanding the core concepts and trends for exponential technologies, and also how the culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley is facilitating these developments. This knowledge enables understanding for how these exponential trends will transform companies, industries, and societies through the breakthroughs these technologies will create.

“Exponential technologies” include exponentially expanding artificial intelligence. Essentially, these technology visionaries want to put an end to the human race as we know it and instead, create a “new civilization,” and a “new species,” one in which artificial intelligence is far superior to human intelligence. Kurzweil explains:

Within a quarter century, nonbiological intelligence will match the range and subtlety of human intelligence. It will then soar past it because of the continuing acceleration of information-based technologies, as well as the ability of machines to instantly share their knowledge. Intelligent nanorobots will be deeply integrated in our bodies, our brains, and our environment, overcoming pollution and poverty, providing vastly extended longevity, full-immersion virtual reality incorporating all of the senses (like “The Matrix”), “experience beaming” (like “Being John Malkovich”), and vastly enhanced human intelligence. The result will be an intimate merger between the technology-creating species and the technological evolutionary process it spawned…We’ll get to a point where technical progress will be so fast that unenhanced human intelligence will be unable to follow it. That will mark the Singularity.

To summarize: Kurzweil and his cronies at Google are actively seeking to put an end to humanity and create a new species altogether.

The technology evangelists who are working toward the Singularity feel certain that this new species will be benign; that is, that the new species will want to solve problems in an altruistic way. The fact that some of today’s humans may not want to have “nanorobots deeply integrated into our brains, our bodies and our environment” is of no concern to Kurzweil and Google whatsoever.

According to Kurzweil, scientists have come “much farther than people realize” to “reverse engineer the human brain.” He also says that nothing will be important except for information technology; so we can forget about most of the things we now hold dear in our current lifestyles. “Ultimately, everything of importance will be comprised essentially of information technology,” he says.

According to Kurzweil, immortality will be delivered via nanorobots that will travel within our bodies and reverse the aging process. We will be able to order designer babies and re-design ourselves:

Biotechnology is providing the means to actually change your genes: not just designer babies but designer baby boomers…the nanotechnology revolution…will achieve maturity in the 2020s. With nanotechnology, we will be able to go beyond the limits of biology, and replace your current “human body version 1.0” with a dramatically upgraded version 2.0, providing radical life extension…As we get to the 2030s, the nonbiological portion of our intelligence will predominate.

For folks who are concerned about abuses of such technologies and the dangers of nanorobots, or even those who possess a love of all that is natural; perhaps peace can be found in knowing there is nothing you can do about it. Google and like-minded individuals in Silicon Valley will have their way. Their concern lies with their own profits and the profits of all technology evangelists; the destruction of all that is natural; domination of the human race via nanorobots and the realization of all of their hard work. But hey, they can deliver immortality via the Singularity, so sit back, relax, and watch as the human race disappears. It will be replaced with a new species of “thing;” a species which is immortal, and in which the natural human experience-the core of humanity itself-is no more.

By: Rebecca Savastio

(op-ed)

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20 Responses to Immortality will be Delivered by the Singularity Say Scientists

  1. hinton lewis August 29, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    I agree with the author. Although I am highly adaptable to all forms of technology. In fact I love technology. But I believe we as a race are foolish to think we can control a technology that has this capability to radically change our race and even destroy it. At best it will be like the the spread of all weapons technologies. At worst it will be the extinction of of us all.

    Reply
  2. nero August 29, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    So we basically become the borg?

    Reply
  3. mccarty August 26, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    the lady that wrote this article sounds like a complete fing ahole. You like nature, you can stick with malaria and rotting teeth.

    Reply
  4. Toni Ferraté August 25, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    @Rebecca,

    Moore’s Law is exponential and empirical since 1958: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moore%27s_law

    Happens the same (exponentialy growth) with a lot of related new technologies: Mobility (Smartphones), Cloud Computing, Cloud Robotics, etc, tools which will make your life more easy and probably save human civilization which is close to collapse:
    http://www.robotica-personal.es/2013/01/cloud-robotics-new-paradigm-is-near.html

    Technology changes Social and culture. The reverse sentence is not true, cuture and social and media doeesn’t change technology, despite some bit of feedback. Human culture and social civilization and its perception as yours trends to perceive all changes as linear, and this will not change technology:
    http://www.robotica-personal.es/cloud-robotics

    All exponentiality implies a singularity

    Reply
  5. Art Toegemann August 23, 2013 at 11:05 am

    I hope we control aging by genetics.

    Reply
  6. Wayne August 23, 2013 at 12:38 am

    I’m sure everyone will have the option to die the old fashioned way if they want to so opponents to the Singularity need not worry.
    Few people would currently oppose cochlear implants for deaf people, robotic limbs for amputees and antibiotics for life threatening infections so I see no reason to stop pursuing the next generation of biotech enhancements.

    Reply
  7. mjblake August 22, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    This article is so dumb! Nobody will force anybody else to be a new ‘species of thing’. You wanna die? Knock yourself out? Just leave me the option to choose my own path. And developing technology to save lives really IS a good thing. I feel like Luddites shouldn’t be allowed to write stories about technology. And YES, this is an inaccurate portrayal of the Singularity.

    Reply
  8. Rebecca Savastio August 20, 2013 at 11:49 pm

    @Diane Murphy: It’s an opinion piece. I’m sorry you don’t like my opinion, but that does not make it “inaccurate.”

    Reply
  9. Tim Whitcher August 20, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    The matrix.

    Reply
  10. Peter O'Neill August 20, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    Sounds more like Scientology than science fiction.

    Reply
  11. Diane Murphy August 20, 2013 at 8:07 am

    This article by Rebecca Savastio is completely inaccurate in its portrayal of Singularity University, its mission and vision, which is to understand the rapid advancement of technology and the ability to use these technologies to improve the lives of people around the world, by creating technology solutions to many of our greatest challenges: including clean water, abundant energy, food supplies, security and healthcare. Singularity University is now 5 years old and many reputable journalists have attended and written about it, including Bloomberg, NYT, ABC, Economist, the News Hour, WIRED, among others and their reporting can be found on our website: http://www.singularityu.org. If Ms. Savastio would like to personally attend and see what SU actually does and talks about – we welcome her to visit so that her reporting in the future can be based on reality.

    Diane Murphy, Communications
    Singularity University

    Reply
  12. Brad Arnold August 19, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Human culture changes much more slowly than technology. Therefore, a tension exists between our exponentially advancing technology, and our (slower than?) linearly changing culture. You will find as time progresses, and technology proceeds exponentially, that humanity clumps into opposing camps. Do you want to live forever? Are you afraid of utilizing content computing (i.e. social networks, google, etc)? Will you end up implanting technology under your skin (i.e. health monitors, computer interfaces, etc)? Transhumanists and Singulartarians only want to be left alone, and you can take or leave their technological advances, but you can bet that cultural conservatives will want to legislate their values into law to stifle progress. Stay tuned.

    Reply
    • Jeff August 23, 2013 at 3:56 pm

      This rings true to me, segregation seems to be the natural resistance with pockets of humanity in all eras.

      Reply
  13. Chad August 19, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    All I want to know is, how do I become a test subject?

    Reply
  14. Mark Plus August 19, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    So what will these people say when their hero Ray Kurzweil dies on schedule like everyone else? I looked up the actuarial tables and used a spreadsheet to perform a calculation, and it turns out that a man Kurzweil’s age had 22 percent odds of dying in the next ten years.

    Reply
    • Matt August 19, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      What about the other 78%?

      Reply
    • metamartyr August 21, 2013 at 5:05 pm

      Kurzweil isn’t a hero, such a title is a waste of time. He is a great spokesperson though and has a lot of evidence to back up his predictions. Not only that, but his predictions have a good track record for coming true. Also, I think it’d more likely serve as a sign for why this kind of research is important. There are far less fortunate people dying all over the world for stupid reasons like poverty and poor health; it would be a cold reminder of this fact if the man trying promoting life saving technology died before he was able to use it.

      It’s good to be sceptical, but don’t base your scepticism off one poorly represented news article. I would recommend watching one of his TED talks. Aubrey de Grey has made a lot of good material and has contributed a lot of research into biology and ageing, so is another good name to read about. Jason Silva has released some awe-inspiring videos too, you can find his channels on Youtube and Vimeo.

      Reply

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