Futurists, today

Just had the pretty wonderful experience of seeing Ray Kurzweil talk - Kurzweil is an absolutely spectacularly intelligent person who spends a lot of time looking out towards the future and speculating where we're going and where we'll end up. He's written The Age of Intelligent Machines, The Age of Spiritual Machines, and most recently The Singularity is Near. Given our current rate of advancement in technology, which icreases exponentially, and not linearly (which is strange to imagine, since we instinctivly project linearly), will be advancing faster than ever before and are rapidly changing our society. So much so that the line between technology and biology is becoming more and more blurred, and that within the next few decades, extension of life expectancy will start to increase faster than we can age. That is, for every one year you live, the life expectancy will increase by at least one year, almost certainly more, leading to a sense of immortality. He even postulates that within two decades, computing will reach orders of magnitude over the computing power of the human brain.

Ponder that for a while. Crazy science fiction? It's certainly pretty hard for a lot of people to swallow. But if you this is interesting to you at all, and even if you read his books as fully fiction, I would definitely recommend The Singularity. It's a brick of a book, but it's interesting in a really nerdy, tech way. It certainly paves the road for the imagination to run wild at the potential futures. What would happen in a world where nanomachines could augment your health to always be in a spectacular state? A world where it was possible to actually live (essentially) forever?

Stuff that's really out there - but wouldn't it be intersting if that's where we headed?

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