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Technological Singularity. Preventing Post Humanity By Alex Jarstad. Introduction to Technological Singularity. Technological singularity is the point at which computers achieve artificial intelligence that surpasses the intelligence of humans .

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technological singularity

Technological Singularity

Preventing Post Humanity

By Alex Jarstad

introduction to technological singularity
Introduction to Technological Singularity
  • Technological singularity is the point at which computers achieve artificial intelligence that surpasses the intelligence of humans.
  • Scientists generally agree that this will occur before the year 2030.
  • The term Singularity was first proposed in 1993 by Theorist VernorVinge.
technological singularity1

Technological Singularity

“Let an ultraintelligent machine be defined as a machine that can far surpass all the intellectual activities of any man however clever. Since the design of machines is one of these intellectual activities, an ultraintelligent machine could design even better machines; there would then unquestionably be an ‘intelligence explosion,’ and the intelligence of man would be left far behind. Thus the first ultraintelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make.” – I.J. Good, 1965

historical background
Historical Background
  • 3000 B.C. The Chinese invent a counting device known as the “abacus”.
  • 1623 A.D. Wilhelm Schickard develops the first automatic calculator.
  • 1679 A.D. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz develops the modern binary system.
  • 1938 A.D. As a result of World War II starting, the United States Army begins research towards the development of the ENIAC.
  • 1947 A.D. The transistor is invented at AT&T Bell labs.
  • 1965 A.D. Gordon Moore makes the discovery that the number of transistors that can be placed on a circuit board and still be cost efficient will double every 24 months.
  • 1988 A.D. Hans Moravec creates an early projection for when the intelligence explosion will occur.
moore s law
Moore’s Law
  • The number of transistors that can be placed on an integrated circuit will increase exponentially approximately every two years in relationship to cost.
  • Has held true to the test of time (Twist, 2005).

moore s law1
Moore’s Law

moravec s projection
Moravec’s Projection

what is intelligence
What is intelligence?
  • Human intelligence
  • Animal intelligence
  • Artificial intelligence

the human brain
The Human Brain
  • According to Steven Pinker, author of How the Mind Works, “The mind is a system of organs of computation, designed by natural selection to solve the kinds of problems our ancestors faced in their foraging way of life, in particular, understanding and outmaneuvering objects, animals, plants, and other people (1997).”
physical components
Physical Components
  • Neurons – Specialized Brain cells required for functioning (Bear et al., 2007).
  • Glia (Glial cells)

functional areas of the brain
Functional Areas of the Brain

complexity of human thought
Complexity of human thought
  • Years of mental development prove to be adaptive (Wundt, 1897).
  • Cortical Brain functioning allows for hypothesis testing (Bennett & Hacker, 2005).
computer intelligence
Computer Intelligence
  • Can computers think?
the turing test
The Turing Test

implications of turing test
Implications of Turing Test
  • An error in identifying the human exhibits the computer’s ability to think and trick the participant.
  • “The only way to know that a man thinks is to be that particular man (Turing, 1950).”
  • In the years that followed the work of Turing the primary question of AI turned from “Can computers think?” to “How well can computers think?” (Hayles, 1999).
computer thinking vs human thinking
Computer thinking vs. Human thinking

Computer Thinking

Human Thinking

Parallel Processing

Can analyze novel problems

  • Serial Processing
  • Can analyze preprogrammed problems

completely autonomous ai
Completely Autonomous AI
  • Understand Full Spectrum of Human Emotion
  • Experience Emotion
  • Be able to recognize images and language
  • Sense of self preservation
recent developments
Recent Developments
  • Quantum Computers – Building The Matrix (Castelvecchi, 2008).
  • Parallel Processing Computers – Cray and Intel multiyear deal (Thomas, 2008).
  • Self Aware Artificial intelligence – NaturalMotion Euphoria software (NaturalMotion, 2008)
  • Socializing Robots – Robots develop unique personalities based on interactions with humans (Ceurstemont, 2009).
  • Facial recognition software – Facial expression recognition
the singularity is near
The Singularity is Near
  • Kurzweil (2005) on reverse engineering the brain – Because human intelligence exists means it is possible to replicate it.
  • Forms of artificial intelligence already exists within search engines, video games, and cell phones.
  • One of the biggest setbacks towards developing AI is that computers right now cannot process language the way humans can. However, within the next five years computer programs should be able to model semantics, not just simply mimic syntax.
  • By the year 2029 computers will be completely indistinguishable from human intelligence (Ramaswami, 2009).
vernor vinge s 2008 scenarios for ai
VernorVinge’s (2008) Scenarios for AI
  • The AI Scenario: superhuman AI in computers.
  • The IA Scenario: humans can be essentially upgraded by computers (Intelligence Amplification).
  • The Biomedical Scenario: We alter the biological structures of our brains thus improving human intelligence
  • The Internet Scenario: All information becomes directly connected creating a super intelligent entity.
  • The Digital Gaia Scenario: Networks of microprocessors become so efficient that they are said to hold superhuman intelligence.
predicting outcomes
Predicting Outcomes
  • Virtual reality worlds (Kurzweil, 2005)
  • Cures for everything and every possible discovery made within years of intelligence explosion (Good, 1965).
  • If something can go wrong, it will (Vinge, 1993).
  • Post biological beings (Dick, 2008).

Which Future Will It Be?

regulation for ai must start now
Regulation for AI must start now
  • The Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence Mission Statement – “In the coming decades, humanity will likely create a powerful artificial intelligence. SIAI exists to handle this urgent challenge, both the opportunity and the risk (”
  • “Will the movie we live in be The Jetsons or Terminator 2? (Stix, 2000)”.
youtube the singularity
YouTube – The Singularity

  • Bear, M.F., Connors, B.W., & Paradiso, M.A. (2007). Neuroscience: Exploring the Brain. Baltimore: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
  • Bennett, M.R. and Hacker, P.M.S. (2005). Emotion and cortical-subcortical function: conceptual developments. Progress in Neurobiology, 75, 29-52.
  • Castelvecchi, D. (August 30, 2008). Building ‘The Matrix’. Retrieved February 2, 2009 from

  • Ceurstemont, S. (2009). Sociable robots learn to get along with humans. Retrieved February 23, 2009 from
  • Dick, S. (August 19, 2008). Could Robot Aliens Exist? Retrieved February 2, 2009 from
  • Good, I. J. (1965). Speculations Concerning the First Ultraintelligent Machine. Advances in

Computers (Academic Press), 6, 31-88.

  • Hayles, N.K. (1999). How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
  • Kurzweil, R. (2005) The Singularity is Near. Available February 3, 2008 from


  • Moravec, H. (1988). Mind Children. Boston: Harvard University Press.
  • NaturalMotion Ltd. (2008). FAQ. Retrieved February 23, 2009 from
  • Pinker, S. (1997). How the Mind Works. Retrieved February 3, 2009 from
  • Ramaswami, R. (2009). Artificial Intelligence: Is the Future Now For A.I.? Retrieved February 23, 2009 from
  • Stix, G. (2000). Artificial Intelligentsia. Retrieved February 3, 2009 from
  • Thomas, A. (2008). Cray goes with Intel for HPC. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from
  • Turing, A.M. (1950). Computer Machinery and Intelligence. Mind, 59, 433-460.
  • Twist, J. (2005). Law that has driven digital life. Retrieved February 16, 2009 from

  • Vinge, V. (2008). Signs of the Singularity . Retrieved March 1, 2009 from
  • Vinge, V. (1993). The Coming Technological Singularity: How to Survive in the Post-Human

Era. Retrieved February 2, 2009 from misc/singularity.html.