Monday, September 04, 2006

From a 1999 Book By Ray Kurzweil

"2009 [many of the things below are already happening; you'll see if you research them; most of his predictions for the 1990s in a ~1990 book were correct]
-A $1,000 personal computer can perform a trillion calculations per second.
-Personal computers with high-resolution visual displays come in a range of sizes, from those small enough to be embedded in clothing and jewelry up to the size of a thin book.
-Cables are disappearing. Communication between components uses short-distance wireless technology. High-speed wreless communication provides access to the Web.
-The majoity of text is created using continuous speech recognition [in Windows vista]. Also ubiquitous are language user interfaces.
-Most routine business transactions (purchases, travel, reservations) take place between a human and a virtual personality. Often, the virtual personality includes an animated visual presence that looks like a human face.
-Although traditional classroom organization is still common, intelligent courseware has emerged as a common means of learning.
-Pocket-sized reading machines for the blind and visually impaired, "listening machines" (speech to text-conversion) for the deaf, and computer-controlled orthotic devices for paraplegeic individuals result in a growing perception that primary disabilities do not necessarily impart handicaps.
-Translating telephones (speech-to-speech language translation) are commonly used for many language pairs.
-Bioengineered treatments for cancer and heart disease have greatly reduced the mortality from these diseases.
-The neo-Luddite movement is growing.

-A $1,000 computing device (in 1999 dollars) is now approximately equal to the computational ability of the human brain.
-Computers are now largely invisible and are embedded everywhere---in walls, tables, chairs, desks, clothing, jewelry and bodies.
-Three-dimensional virtual reality displays, embedded in glasses and contact lenses, as well as auditory lenses are used routinely as primary interfaces for communication with other persons, computers, the Web, and virtual reality.
-Most interaction with computing is through gestures and two-way language spoken communication.
-Nanoengineered machines are beginning to be applied to manufacturing and process-control applications.
-Most learning is conducted through intelligent, simulated software-based teachers.
-Automated driving systems are now installed in most roads.
-Virtual artists, with their own reputations, are emerging in all the arts.

2029: A $1,000 (in 1999 dollars) unit of computation has the computing capacity of approximately 1,000 human brains.

Permanent or removable implants (similar to contact lenses) for the eyes as well as cochlear implants are now used to provide input and output between the human user and the worldwide computing network.

Direct neural pathways have been perfected for high-bandwidth connection to the human brain. A range of neural implants is becoming available to enhance visual and auditory perception and interpretation, memory, and reasoning.

Automated agents are now learning on their own, and significant knowledge is being created by machines with little or no human intervention.

Computers have read all available human- and machine-generated literature and multimedia material.

There is widespread use of all-encompassing visual, auditory, and tactile communication using direct neural connections, allowing virtual reality to take place without having to be in a "total touch enclosure."

The majority of communication does not involve a human. There is almost no human employment in production, agriculture, or transportation. Basic life needs are available for the vast majority of the human race.

There is a growing discussion about the legal rights of computers and what constitutes being "human."

Although computers routinely pass apparently valid forms of the Turing Test, controversy persists about whether or not machine intelligence equals human intelligence in all of its diversity.

Machines claim to be conscious. These claims are largely accepted.

2049: The common use of nanoproduced food, which has the correct nutritional composition and the same taste and texture of organically produced food, means that the availability of food is no longer affected by limited resources, bad crop weather, or spoilage.

Nanobot swarm projections are used to create visual-auditory-tactile projections of people and objects in real reality.

2072: Picoengineering (developing technology at the scale of picometers or trillionths of a meter = size of 10 protons) becomes practical.

By the year 2099:
There is a strong trend toward a merger of human thinking with the world of machine intelligence that the human species initially created.

There is no longer any clear distinction between humans and computers.
Most conscious entities do not have a permanent physical presence.

Machine-based intelligences derived from extended models of human intelligence claim to be human, although their brains are not based on carbon-based cellular processes, but rather electronic and photonic equivalents. Most of these intelligences are not tied to a specific computational processing unit. The number of software-based humans vastly exceeds those still using native neuron-cell-based computation.

Even among those human intelligences still using carbon-based neurons, there is ubiquitous use of neural-implant technology, which provides enormous augmentation of human perceptual and cognitive abilities. Humans who do not utilize such implants are unable to meaningfully participate in dialogues with those who do.

Because most information is published using standard assimilated knowledge protocols, information can be instantly understood. The goal of education, and of intelligent beings, is discovering new knowledge to learn.

Femtoengineering (engineering at the scale of femtometers or one thousandth of a trillionth of a meter = engineering new subatomic particles the size of quarks) proposals are controversial.

Life expectancy is no longer a viable term in relation to intelligent beings.


Blogger Tay Ween said...

Have you read Kurzweil's "The Singularity is Near?" He extrapolates a little bit further and it is quite interesting, especially when you consider how dead on he has been in the past like you've stated. I haven't read "Spritual Machines" since I read TSIN first, think it's worth it anyway?

8:47 PM  

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