Is Technological Singularity Possible?

Technology has developed in so many ways during the past 100 years, that no one can tell you where the limit lies. Would you believe me if I told that the first computer was big as your bedroom?

Is Technological Singularity Possible?

The First Computers

Technology has developed in so many ways during the past 100 years, that no one can tell you where the limit lies. Would you believe me if I told that the first computer was as big as your bedroom? To gain your trust, look at the picture below. It shows a picture of ENIAC, the first Turing-complete device, and performed ballistics trajectory calculations for the United States Army.


Picture from Wikipedia

Or perhaps you should look at Colossus, the first electronic digital programmable computing device, and was used to break German ciphers during World War II.

Picture form Wikipedia

Right now, our technology just keeps evolving and getting better. The question is: “Where is the limit?”

What Is Technological Singularity?

To put it in simple words, we’re speaking about robots and computers capable of self-improving themselves. This happens as a hypothetical event which seems nearly impossible for the human understanding. That’s why it’s referred to as super intelligence. Proponents believe that technological singularity may become unpredictable or even unfathomable to human intelligence. If we were to invent a new language, could an artificial intelligence learn that language just like humans do without anyone having to “translate” it into codes?

Why Is Technological Singularity Hard To Achieve?

While we humans can learn from experience, lose control over our logical ways of thinking because we’re in an emotional state (example love) and overcome challenges that seem impossible, computers only do what they are meant to do without any sign of emotions. One could say that they possess a radical way of thinking. One can create a super computer, but will it be perfect? Can an imperfect being, the human, create something perfect?

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Criticism & Derivations

Paradigm shift is a very popular word combination. In relation with this topic, the word “paradigm” is used as “example”. Raymond Kurzweil, an American computer scientist, believes that paradigm shifts extend the exponential growth of Moore’s law, which contains following facts: Integrated circuits to earlier transistors, vacuum tubes, relays, and electromechanical computers.

Picture from Wikipedia

Raymond Kurzweil predicts that the exponential growth will continue, and that in a few decades the computing power of all computers will exceed that of (“unenhanced”) human brains, with superhuman artificial intelligence appearing around the same time.

While some scientists support the thesis, others criticize it and believe that no computer or machine will ever live up to such “ridiculous” expectations. Steven Spinker, Canadian-born American cognitive scientist & popular scientist, once said: “There is not the slightest reason to believe in a coming singularity. The fact that you can visualize a future in your imagination is not evidence that it is likely or even possible. Look at domed cities, jet-pack commuting, underwater cities, mile-high buildings, and nuclear-powered automobiles — all staples of futuristic fantasies when I was a child, that have never arrived. Sheer processing power is not a pixie dust that magically solves all your problems.” The list of critics is just as long as the one full of supporters. Only the future will show who was right.

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