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The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology by [Ray Kurzweil]
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The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 1,098 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Renowned inventor Kurzweil (The Age of Spiritual Machines) may be technology's most credibly hyperbolic optimist. Elsewhere he has argued that eliminating fat intake can prevent cancer; here, his quarry is the future of consciousness and intelligence. Humankind, it runs, is at the threshold of an epoch ("the singularity," a reference to the theoretical limitlessness of exponential expansion) that will see the merging of our biology with the staggering achievements of "GNR" (genetics, nanotechnology and robotics) to create a species of unrecognizably high intelligence, durability, comprehension, memory and so on. The word "unrecognizable" is not chosen lightly: wherever this is heading, it won't look like us. Kurzweil's argument is necessarily twofold: it's not enough to argue that there are virtually no constraints on our capacity; he must also convince readers that such developments are desirable. In essence, he conflates the wholesale transformation of the species with "immortality," for which read a repeal of human limit. In less capable hands, this phantasmagoria of speculative extrapolation, which incorporates a bewildering variety of charts, quotations, playful Socratic dialogues and sidebars, would be easier to dismiss. But Kurzweil is a true scientist—a large-minded one at that—and gives due space both to "the panoply of existential risks" as he sees them and the many presumed lines of attack others might bring to bear. What's arresting isn't the degree to which Kurzweil's heady and bracing vision fails to convince—given the scope of his projections, that's inevitable—but the degree to which it seems downright plausible. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

From the Back Cover

Advance Praise For The Singularity is Near

"Ray Kurzweil is the best person I know at predicting the future of artificial intelligence. His intriguing new book envisions a future in which information technologies have advanced so far and fast that they enable humanity to transcend its biological limitations-transforming our lives in ways we can't yet imagine."
-Bill Gates

"A brilliant book with deep insights into the future from one of the leading futurists of our time."
-Marvin Minsky, Toshiba Professor of Media Arts and Sciences, MIT

"If you have ever wondered about the nature and impact of the next profound discontinuities that will fundamentally change the way we live, work, and perceive our world, read this book. Kurzweil's Singularity is a tour de force, imagining the unimaginable and eloquently exploring the coming disruptive events that will alter our fundamental perspectives as significantly as did electricity and the computer."
-Dean Kamen, physicist and inventor of the first wearable insulin pump, the HomeChoice portable dialysis machine, the IBOT Mobility System, and the Segway Human Transporter; recipient of the National Medal of Technology

"One of our leading AI practitioners, Ray Kurzweil, has once again created a 'must-read' book for anyone interested in the future of science, the social impact of technology, and indeed the future of our species. His though-provoking book envisages a future in which we transcend our biological limitations, while making a compelling case that a human civilization with superhuman capabilities is closer at hand than most people realize."
-Raj Reddy, founding director, Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University; recipient of the Turing Award from the Association for Computing Machinery

"Ray's optimistic book well merits both reading and thoughtful response. For those like myself whose views differ from Ray's on the balance of promise and peril, The Singularity is Near is a clear call for a continuing dialogue to address the greater concerns arising from these accelerating possibilities."
-Bill Joy, cofounder and former chief scientist, Sun Microsystems --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B07H2M361D
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Duckworth (February 11, 2010)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ February 11, 2010
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 3310 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 1011 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 1,098 ratings

Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
1,098 global ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on February 10, 2015
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Reviewed in the United States on October 17, 2017
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A
5.0 out of 5 stars Thicc
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 20, 2020
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Mark W.
4.0 out of 5 stars times,they are a changing!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 8, 2018
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Tom Watson
5.0 out of 5 stars The future is beyond our comprehension when tech merges with our cellular biology
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 11, 2019
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Rob
3.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking, but gets annoying
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 13, 2013
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Modafinil
3.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating,perplexing but worth the effort.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 26, 2012
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