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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old November 12 2012, 06:51 PM   #151
RAMA
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Your puzzle pieces don't fit. That's what we've been trying to tell you.
You guys speak about beliefs as well as from a narrow linear viewpoint(which I don't blame you for) and past experience, I can cite evidence. I can also cite what's happening right now to make my beliefs and predictions happen...in other words, I'm painting a picture that creates a climate where the potential exists. My central belief is almost a certainty, but the implications of it are not. Taking it all into account, I'm talking about a time where the frame of reference has changed, and you aren't prepared for it yet.

So what's my unscientific (though researched) view to what's possible:

Singularity..the actual moment when machine AGI is smarter than us before 2050, based on mathematics and models: 100%
Singularity before 2050...as a paradigm shift for all humanity as described by proponents: 75%
Computer passing Turing test before 2030: 95%
Brain uploading before 2040: 100%
Other transhuman tech common before 2040 including brain "downloading"(like matrix): 100%
Nanotech assemblers common before 2045: 90%
Nanotech material becoming common before 2030: 100%
Foglet technology before 2050: 80%
Possibility a singularity leads to takeover by machines AGI: 50%
Possibility of an artilect war: 40%
Untethered human acting robots or androids before 2040: 100%
Renewable energy technology taking the lead over traditional energy resources by 2040: 75%
Solar power satellites before 2040: 30%
Fusion power: 10 fusion plants by 2050: 90%
Pollution control through biotech and nanotech at a high level before 2040: 90%
Genetically customized drugs common before 2025: 90%
Water scarcity post 2020: 0%
Farming technologies ending hunger before 2040: 90%
MIssion to Mars before 2035: 50%
Asteroid mining before 2040: 40%
Mission to another star 2100..most likely by Von Neumann machines: 90%








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Old November 12 2012, 07:16 PM   #152
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

The thing is, you have only ever cited pop-sci magazines as supporting evidence for any of these claims and then promptly ignored the practical criticisms for why those lofty predictions seemed overly optimistic -- which you did again, just now, when you ignored the very POSSIBILITY of a logistical curve creating a development plateau.

It isn't even that anyone here doubts the singularity IN PRINCIPLE. It's that your interpretation of the theory has been consistently overreaching and over-optimistic; rather than being based on a thoughtful analysis of the technology, it seems to be based mostly on you being really impressed by pop-sci magazines.
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Old November 12 2012, 07:45 PM   #153
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
The thing is, you have only ever cited pop-sci magazines as supporting evidence for any of these claims and then promptly ignored the practical criticisms for why those lofty predictions seemed overly optimistic -- which you did again, just now, when you ignored the very POSSIBILITY of a logistical curve creating a development plateau.

It isn't even that anyone here doubts the singularity IN PRINCIPLE. It's that your interpretation of the theory has been consistently overreaching and over-optimistic; rather than being based on a thoughtful analysis of the technology, it seems to be based mostly on you being really impressed by pop-sci magazines.
It is true I post pop-sci information, mainly because these keep pace with developments faster than most other forms of reporting, and that's what it takes to keep up. However, it is also true, where possible, I try to post information right from the expert's page, or a story where the expert(s) are given a chance to speak. I HAVE also posted from studies at labs and universities. By "expert" I mean someone in that field, or inventor, or even sometimes science writers or speculators who specialize in such information. Kurzweil it so happens is an expert in many fields and also highly accurate in his speculations/predictions.

Ok so I'll spell it out:

Main thread:

http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.ph...fiction+firsts

http://www.trekbbs.com/showpost.php?...8&postcount=76

http://www.trekbbs.com/showpost.php?...5&postcount=83

http://www.trekbbs.com/showpost.php?...1&postcount=93

http://www.trekbbs.com/showpost.php?...1&postcount=65

I also countered the criticism of software view though I couldn't find the link: Basically:

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/0...m_medium=email

http://dirkriehle.com/publications/2...f-open-source/
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Old November 12 2012, 08:20 PM   #154
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Your puzzle pieces don't fit. That's what we've been trying to tell you.
Me thinks he was one of these people that hammer and snip the puzzle pieces until they "fit" and declare it "done" in whatever mangled state it ends up.
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Old November 14 2012, 05:51 PM   #155
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

RAMA wrote: View Post
It is true I post pop-sci information, mainly because these keep pace with developments faster than most other forms of reporting
But they don't, though. They keep well ahead of developments, projecting the most extreme and most successful applications of that technology to predict how it might manifest if everything comes out alright. They do this specifically to keep their readers interested -- readers like you, who turn on their every word and never look back at old pop-sci magazines to see if the projections actually came true.

Look back, if you will, at the PopSci archives for a blast from the past. A 1995 issue of Popular Science features wirelss phone jacks, portable refrigerated beer coolers, a self-driving truck with an inertial guidance system, an experiment to produce acetylinic carbon as a possible clean-burning (and stealthy) aviation fuel, a two-in-one washer/dryer (WTF?! I want one!) and a VERY BRIEF article about the development of the P6 microarchitecture.

Pay close attention to two things in this magazine. First: of all the technologies and devices showcased in the articles, the only one that actually took off and saw widespread use was the P6 (it eventually evolved into the Pentium Pro and the Pentium III), and second, that this magazine is about 40% ads. More importantly, some of the actual articles aren't articles, but more ads disguised as articles by startup companies hoping to hype their products in a pop-sci magazine (the P6 article, ironically, is one of them).
Didn't address the issue at all, you neatly skirted it by saying "It'll just paradigm shift and go back to being exponential."

IIRC, the followup questions were a half dozen variations of "Based on what?" to which you answered by quoting more pop-sci articles.

Christopher points out that your prediction of a steady exponential growth is over simplistic.

Your response: "But we have so much to learn and I have so much optimism!" followed by more popsci articles.

Christopher explains that you cannot project a short-term trend indefinitely.

Your response is that even Kurzweil acknowledges this... but what about paradigm shifts?!
Christopher points out that people who actually work with AI on a practical level don't take much stock in singularity theory (which is true).

Your response: "That's true, but they're just being pessimistic!"

Basically, all of your responses hinge on many subtle variations of "Cool technology is cool! Here's a hyperlink! I'm sure it'll keep getting cooler if you just give it a chance!"

I refer you back to the pop-sci magazine from the archives and the fact that the majority of the technologies showcased there either failed or vanished into obscurity. Why did this happen, RAMA? It happened because TECHNOLOGY isn't the only thing we need to be looking at when we make those kinds of predictions. Technology isn't developed in a vacuum, there is also politics, finances, wars, disasters, personal disputes, legal disputes, random chance and a fickle consumer market that doesn't always reward innovation with success (seriously, where the HELL can I get one of those two-in-one washer/dryers?!?!?! I shouldn't have to move my laundry from one door to the other between cycles... what is this, Soviet Russia?!).

You're trying to project the singularity by JUST looking at the technology. It's not merely that this is an oversimplification of the way technology works, it's not merely that the logistic curve is implied in the cyclical development model that YOU YOURSELF suggested (and there's no reason to assume paradigm shift you keep mentioning would be in any way useful to computer technology). It is the fact that not everything that is POSSIBLE is actually practical, and not everything that is practical is widely done or used. Projecting the singularity would require one to recognize not only that a certain technology is achievable, but to determine to what extent that achievement will be distributed among society and whether or not it will be adopted by consumers or governments at all. If it DOES happen, it's not something you'll be reading about in pop-sci magazines; the first that most of us will know about it is when sentient androids and/or helpful AIs start showing up at Best Buy, asking us to buy them.
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Old November 14 2012, 06:30 PM   #156
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
(seriously, where the HELL can I get one of those two-in-one washer/dryers?!?!?! I shouldn't have to move my laundry from one door to the other between cycles... what is this, Soviet Russia?!)..
Bestbuy
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Old November 15 2012, 07:45 AM   #157
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

1) Autonomous cars. Maybe not fully like we saw in Demolition Man (and countless other movies) but we are already headed there.

2) Flexible, foldable display screens/touch interfaces. Your iPhone will be a pen and you'll unroll the screen out of it.

3) Your phone will be your wallet. All of your cards, everything, will be digitally stored on your phone and accessed via RFID.

4) You will control your iTV by talking to it.

5) Your computer will be able to satisfy you sexually...
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Old November 15 2012, 04:59 PM   #158
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
5. An off switch for children
^ROFLMAO!!!

These would be mine:
1) Real life TBs1-5, plus the ancillary vehicles
2) VISORs
3) Nanotechnology
4) Holodecks
5) Flying cars
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Old November 16 2012, 07:36 PM   #159
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

sojourner wrote: View Post
newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
(seriously, where the HELL can I get one of those two-in-one washer/dryers?!?!?! I shouldn't have to move my laundry from one door to the other between cycles... what is this, Soviet Russia?!)..
Bestbuy
They never have these locally, the bastards. Just the two-units-in-one stacks that always seem way too small for the pricetag.
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Old November 17 2012, 06:22 PM   #160
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
RAMA wrote: View Post
It is true I post pop-sci information, mainly because these keep pace with developments faster than most other forms of reporting
But they don't, though. They keep well ahead of developments, projecting the most extreme and most successful applications of that technology to predict how it might manifest if everything comes out alright. They do this specifically to keep their readers interested -- readers like you, who turn on their every word and never look back at old pop-sci magazines to see if the projections actually came true.

Look back, if you will, at the PopSci archives for a blast from the past. A 1995 issue of Popular Science features wirelss phone jacks, portable refrigerated beer coolers, a self-driving truck with an inertial guidance system, an experiment to produce acetylinic carbon as a possible clean-burning (and stealthy) aviation fuel, a two-in-one washer/dryer (WTF?! I want one!) and a VERY BRIEF article about the development of the P6 microarchitecture.

Pay close attention to two things in this magazine. First: of all the technologies and devices showcased in the articles, the only one that actually took off and saw widespread use was the P6 (it eventually evolved into the Pentium Pro and the Pentium III), and second, that this magazine is about 40% ads. More importantly, some of the actual articles aren't articles, but more ads disguised as articles by startup companies hoping to hype their products in a pop-sci magazine (the P6 article, ironically, is one of them).
Didn't address the issue at all, you neatly skirted it by saying "It'll just paradigm shift and go back to being exponential."

IIRC, the followup questions were a half dozen variations of "Based on what?" to which you answered by quoting more pop-sci articles.

Christopher points out that your prediction of a steady exponential growth is over simplistic.

Your response: "But we have so much to learn and I have so much optimism!" followed by more popsci articles.

Christopher explains that you cannot project a short-term trend indefinitely.

Your response is that even Kurzweil acknowledges this... but what about paradigm shifts?!
Christopher points out that people who actually work with AI on a practical level don't take much stock in singularity theory (which is true).

Your response: "That's true, but they're just being pessimistic!"

Basically, all of your responses hinge on many subtle variations of "Cool technology is cool! Here's a hyperlink! I'm sure it'll keep getting cooler if you just give it a chance!"

I refer you back to the pop-sci magazine from the archives and the fact that the majority of the technologies showcased there either failed or vanished into obscurity. Why did this happen, RAMA? It happened because TECHNOLOGY isn't the only thing we need to be looking at when we make those kinds of predictions. Technology isn't developed in a vacuum, there is also politics, finances, wars, disasters, personal disputes, legal disputes, random chance and a fickle consumer market that doesn't always reward innovation with success (seriously, where the HELL can I get one of those two-in-one washer/dryers?!?!?! I shouldn't have to move my laundry from one door to the other between cycles... what is this, Soviet Russia?!).

You're trying to project the singularity by JUST looking at the technology. It's not merely that this is an oversimplification of the way technology works, it's not merely that the logistic curve is implied in the cyclical development model that YOU YOURSELF suggested (and there's no reason to assume paradigm shift you keep mentioning would be in any way useful to computer technology). It is the fact that not everything that is POSSIBLE is actually practical, and not everything that is practical is widely done or used. Projecting the singularity would require one to recognize not only that a certain technology is achievable, but to determine to what extent that achievement will be distributed among society and whether or not it will be adopted by consumers or governments at all. If it DOES happen, it's not something you'll be reading about in pop-sci magazines; the first that most of us will know about it is when sentient androids and/or helpful AIs start showing up at Best Buy, asking us to buy them.
Sorry but the issue was directly addressed. You stated simply that exponentials don't continue indefinitely to which I reply this is true, but they develop to the point where a new paradigm takes over, and this is not fantasy, there are already 5 demonstrably true levels of paradigms that have taken place, Moore's Law is the 5th. An extension of Moore's Law takes place with the 3D chip example I gave, and nanotubes are also developing apace. These will be the 6th paradigm. It is also true that exponentials are not infinite, however the upper limit is often so far above we have now that it hardly makes a difference. How does this skirt the issue in any way? It shows the main thrust of the curve(s) still continue.

The second issue, is that such exponenetials are not a natural law, which is also directly addressed in the Kurzweil quote I posted.

The third, is Christopher's (supported by several software posters from this board) suggestion that software has not kept pace with this info curve, which is also demonstrably untrue based on the two articles I posted.

Conclusion: the criticsm by exponential not being natural law or finite in info tech (and by extension anything that becomes an infotech) is not valid.

Edit: Continuing this post now as I was busy earlier:

You mention I cite pop-sci articles, which in itself usually quotes experts, but I also refer Christopher to Hans Marovec's work, which as I state is more detailed than I can get here, and is almost completely freely available online. The proof I cite foir software's expoenetial comes from an industry report as well as a government report. One pop-sci page I assume you are talking about is Kurzweil's own page, which is a site that collects information and info exchange on the subject, since Kurzweil is a major expert on many of the subjects he discusses, and has worked in multiple fields himself, I can consider him a good source of quotes on the subject, therefore I don't consider those "pop-sci".

At this point, the meme for the Singularity is picking up amongst scientific circles, and usually there first. Economists, educators, and a very small trickle of politicans following behind. As I have argued with you on other threads, I point out where political roadbloacks(mostly useless and backwards), war (the Pinker statistics that suggest violence is decreasing and eaths in wars are lower as wars are lower scale), poverty(the rising billion--based on hard UN data), technological limitations(AGI specifically, which is now past it's "sticking point" period), innovation limitations (there are now major forums for those involved to make this stuff happen in reality not least of which is Singularity University) and funding limitations (the explosion of DIY innovator, the Technophilanthropist and projects like xprize and kickstarter; also the fact that we are going to turn to exponential economy, as the stock market is undervalued) can be mitigated or why they are not a hinderence to the continued acclerated change leading to a SIngularity. In fact, the curve continues upward even through economic blips like recessions, wars etc. It is very far from a one dimensional development, and as some of our conversations revolved around this, I'm surprised you're even bringing this up again or maybe you didn't realize why I was establishing those conditions allowing for the change. Disasters are always a possibility, but that's always the case, and I always said these could affect future history no matter what our path is.

As part of this info availabilty change, I don't just have to stick with magazines that are months out of date, I get multiple feeds of info especially on technological change right to my smartphone, literally thousands of articles through apps, email, etc. When I look deeper, then I go online to research it. It's ironic this fundamental change is also an example of the potential of exponential tech.





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Old November 17 2012, 07:27 PM   #161
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

Honestly iPad's seem to be a great advancement over mankind. We could end up just using them as our full-time OS.
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Old November 17 2012, 09:06 PM   #162
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

data909 wrote: View Post
Honestly iPad's seem to be a great advancement over mankind. We could end up just using them as our full-time OS.
The iPad is probably undervalued as an extention of our intelligenc: it stores information as it expands on human memory, let's you connect wirelessly, and generally does things if used properly that are thought of for well rounded, intelligent human beings, such as reading, listening to music, etc. all while fitting in your hand, but lots of things I talk about will immerse you in such information, and likely change not just thought but patterns of thought...so think of iPad as an early wifi brain interface.

I posted this before..



Hawking's ibrain:

http://www.devicemag.com/2012/06/25/...awkings-brain/

RAMA wrote: View Post
So what's my unscientific (though researched) view to what's possible:

Singularity..the actual moment when machine AGI is smarter than us before 2050, based on mathematics and models: 100%
Singularity before 2050...as a paradigm shift for all humanity as described by proponents: 75%
Computer passing Turing test before 2030: 95%
Brain uploading before 2040: 100%
Other transhuman tech common before 2040 including brain "downloading"(like matrix): 100%
Nanotech assemblers common before 2045: 90%
Nanotech material becoming common before 2030: 100%
Foglet technology before 2050: 80%
Possibility a singularity leads to takeover by machines AGI: 50%
Possibility of an artilect war: 40%
Untethered human acting robots or androids before 2040: 100%
Renewable energy technology taking the lead over traditional energy resources by 2040: 75%
Solar power satellites before 2040: 30%
Fusion power: 10 fusion plants by 2050: 90%
Pollution control through biotech and nanotech at a high level before 2040: 90%
Genetically customized drugs common before 2025: 90%
Water scarcity post 2020: 0%
Farming technologies ending hunger before 2040: 90%
MIssion to Mars before 2035: 50%
Asteroid mining before 2040: 40%
Mission to another star 2100..most likely by Von Neumann machines: 90%

RAMA
BTW write these down folks, especially you younger people.
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Old November 17 2012, 09:26 PM   #163
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

Why writing it down? It's just religious faith-based nonsense.
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Old November 17 2012, 10:09 PM   #164
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

RAMA wrote: View Post
BTW write these down folks, especially you younger people.
Where would I get two stone tablets at this hour?
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Old November 18 2012, 05:29 AM   #165
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Re: What are your top 5 technologies of the next 15 years?

RAMA wrote: View Post
Sorry but the issue was directly addressed. You stated simply that exponentials don't continue indefinitely to which I reply this is true, but they develop to the point where a new paradigm takes over, and this is not fantasy, there are already 5 demonstrably true levels of paradigms that have taken place, Moore's Law is the 5th.
Apart from the fact that you have essentially conceded that Moore's law is unlikely to continue exponential growth indefinitely, this still ignores the fact that the next paradigm may or may not have anything at all to do with computer technology. If it is a shift in, say, nanotechnology (and it probably will be) the result would be another logistic curve, this time for mass production capacity; the same industrial products could be produced faster and faster by increasingly smaller and smaller manufacturing machines; by the time the curve starts to level off for the next paradigm shift, you start to get industrial machines the size of skittles that can eat a pile of sawdust and spit out a kitchen table.

The new paradigm wouldn't extend Moore's law to microprocessors at all; once computer technology hits its plateau stage, it cannot really be improved further (it won't get any smaller or faster or more powerful than it already is), but in the new paradigm the same computer can be manufactured considerably faster/easier/in larger numbers and for far smaller expense.

It is also true that exponentials are not infinite
If it's not infinite then it is, by definition, not exponential.

More importantly, without knowing exactly when the curve will begin to flatten out at saturation point, it's difficult to predict exactly where the technology will end up, especially since all other social/political/economic/military factors are still difficult to nail down. The point of diminishing returns has potential to sneak up on you unexpectedly if it involves factors you had previously ignored or judged unimportant just because you assumed they would be eventually mitigated.

How does this skirt the issue in any way?
Because you're assuming the paradigm shift renders the the flattening curve irrelevant. That's an assumption without a basis; it's entirely possible that scientists will make a breakthrough with quantum computers in the next thirty years, after which it begins to become exponentially more difficult to make any advancements at all.

So it does indeed show the main thrust of the curve(s) still continue... but not necessarily for computers.

The third, is Christopher's (supported by several software posters from this board) suggestion that software has not kept pace with this info curve, which is also demonstrably untrue based on the two articles I posted.
The articles demonstrate nothing of the kind. Software HASN'T kept up with those advances, for the specific reason that software engineers develop applications based on the end user's needs, NOT on the available processor power of the platform running it.

IOW, software isn't SUPPOSED to keep pace with processing power; processing power is a potential resource that engineers can exploit when demand for new capabilities begins to manifest, but in the end, those applications are driven by consumer demand first and foremost and technical capacity second.

Conclusion: the criticsm by exponential not being natural law or finite in info tech (and by extension anything that becomes an infotech) is not valid.
Nobody made that criticism, RAMA. The criticism from the get go was that the expanding curve engendered in Moore's law is unlikely to continue indefinitely, primarily because the exponential curve looks exactly like a logistic curve until the point where it starts to level off.

And there IS, in fact, an upper limit to how far microprocessors can be miniaturized or enhanced, especially once you get down to quantum computers and molecule-sized transistors.

The proof I cite foir software's expoenetial comes from an industry report as well as a government report.
But you're conflating hardware and software as if they were the same thing. They are not, not even close. Hardware can be considered a a virtual vessel in which to contain data and overlapping processes devoted to a specific task, which in turn enables larger and more sophisticated software applications to fill that vessel. But it is ALSO true that a larger number of smaller applications can be simultaneously run on the same hardware that wouldn't have been possible otherwise; the exponential growth in computer power would NOT, in that case, lead directly to an exponential growth in software capability, as the applications themselves could follow a more linear progression by very small increases in capability spread out over a much larger number of applications.

This is most obvious in the issue of digital storage. Flash memory and nonvolatile storage devices may eventually outperform hard drives by a considerable margin, but that DOES NOT mean that all future media formats will be pigeonholed into HD quality just because more systems can handle their storage and playback. Quantity as well as quality will increase, and depending on user needs, it may be the former more than the latter.

This has very serious implications for AI and therefore the singularity (see below).

It is very far from a one dimensional development, and as some of our conversations revolved around this, I'm surprised you're even bringing this up again or maybe you didn't realize why I was establishing those conditions allowing for the change.
I bring it up again because you failed to address, in every single case, the fact that the POTENTIAL for change in no way implies the APPROACH of change. Again, the issue here is that you are very easily impressed by pop-sci articles and have a tendency to accept (and in some cases, to volunteer yourself) the most optimistic projections of those technologies based purely on a best-case scenario. You essentially live in a world where inventors never go bankrupt, where startup companies never fail, where great ideas never get pushed to the wayside, where Cisco never shut down the entire Flipcam production line just because they were bored.

The sole basis for the singularity is a projection on the future capabilities of Expert Systems. Put very simply, the Singularity is what happens when expert systems gain the capability to design improved copies of themselves without human intervention; machine intelligence becomes superior to human intelligence to the point that humans no longer control the developmental process (hence it is a Singularity by analogy to a Black Hole: you cannot see beyond the event horizon represented by the Expert System because it is impossible to make meaningful predictions about the value system or decision-making process of such a system). Singularity theory assumes the exponential growth curve is either indefinite or will continue long enough to bring this about.

In the first place, as I and others have pointed out, this is a flawed assumption because the exponential growth of hardware has an inherent upper limit that we may be approaching more rapidly than you think. In the second place -- and vastly more importantly -- software development is driven by user needs, NOT by hardware capabilities. I have myself pointed out on MANY occasions, AIs and robots are capable of replacing humans in virtually any task you can think of, provided the right software and hardware specializations are developed; even the self-improving Expert System would be a more efficient software engineer than the best human in the industry. The thing is, none of these tasks would gain any benefit from machine SENTIENCE, as even the Expert System doesn't need to have any semblance of self-awareness, self-motivation or the ability to make abstract value judgements in order to effectively analyze the needs of end users and construct software applications accordingly. In fact, sentience would almost certainly make it LESS useful, as the ability to think beyond the scope of its task would be a distraction to eat up a significant portion of its (admittedly huge) processing power.

My overall point is that your projections of singularity theory are basically a combination of jubilant optimism of all things technical, combined with reading way too much sensationalist literature without thinking critically about how that process would actually take place.

As part of this info availabilty change, I don't just have to stick with magazines that are months out of date, I get multiple feeds of info especially on technological change right to my smartphone, literally thousands of articles through apps, email, etc.
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