Here’s one of our favorite blogs on the net: GNRinvestor
A post written by it’s dedicated founder and dear friend:
“I remember watching a Larry King interview back sometime in 2006, and I realized two things that struck me as particulary bizarre – well three things if you count the fact that I was intrigued and could not seem to change the channel as I normally would be quick to do if I flicked to a Larry King interview. The first was that I did not recognize the man that was being interviewed. He did not appear to be a celebrity of any kind which is standard Larry King fare, and I assumed at first that he might have been some under-my-radar US politician. The second thing that was bizarre was that he was talking about a multitude of futuristic technologies, in particular artificial intelligence. It was his contention that it was only a matter of ‘when’ (and not a matter of ‘if’), that computers would be smarter than humans. When I heard this at first I thought this must be some kind of joke, or that this guy was another 21st century doomsday philoshopher who still slept in his Terminator PJs and had Matrix posters in his bedroom.
But when I listened to him speak a little longer, I realized that he was different than any person I had ever hear speak about such topics. Beyond that first interview I had to find out more about this person, and since then I have come to personally regard him as the smartest person on the planet. His name is Ray Kurzweil.
The goal of this post is not to be a Kurzweil biography (there are countless other sources that do that in detail), although if you have never heard about him, you will learn something about him in this post. Rather, I would like to share how coming to know about this man, his work, and his theories and most relevant to this site, his predictions have impacted my life and my dreams.
I had been less skeptical of Kurzweil’s words that first time I saw him because he seemed to posess this quiet confidence and matter of factness in the way he spoke that could only come from someone who had a domain of expertise – his being artificial intelligence.
As someone who has a bit of a background in computer science and what software can accomplish, I was amazed to learn that Kurzweil had been the brains behind some of the most important software breakthroughs including the first scanner, test to speech synthesizer, and digital keyboards that reproduced sound indistinguishable from live grand pianos. Let me give you a bit of background. Throughout the age of computing, if we have been able to define certain behavior with rigid rules (like math), we can be reasonably sure that it can be virtualized in a computer (like a calculator).
We have been able to get computers to perform tasks that we are not very good at; remembering things, calculating things and logical reasoning (we reason better than any animal, but frequently our emotions interfere with sound rational thought). Things that we do really well and take for granted are exceptionally difficult to replicate in a machine; socializing, navigating our physical environment and pattern recognition.” – Geoffrey Fernandez
Raymond Kurzweil, alongside Google and NASA, recently launched one of the coolest Universities I’ve ever heard of: Singularity University. Listen to Kurzweil speak about the impact of information technology:
To learn more about Singularity University, click here.