The Doubling Effect and the Technological Singularity

by Sally Morem
(Nisswa, Minnesota, USA)

According to Kurzweil, technological development is accelerating by means of the doubling effect. Also, the period of doubling is getting shorter. The acceleration of technology is itself accelerating.

Therefore, over an unknown length of time, the doublings should start taking place in months, then in weeks, in days, hours, minutes.

The technological Singularity will occur when the doublings get down to seconds. The development of true Artificial Intelligence may take place before, during, or just after the Singularity is reached.

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quantity but not quality
by: Atilio

Kurzweil makes a compelling case against all kinds of instinctive resistance to such acceleration. I am personally convinced although I may have some reservations when we┬┤ll reach doubling per month. It is about the chaos that such phenomena would create.

But the most important obstacle is what are we going to do with it all?

Today nobody has any idea of what is being created in the Net and nobody can take advantage of such a bounty of information.

It is not only about the hardware. it is also about the software.

Hyperbolic growth? Let's get real!
by: Anonymous

Any growth needs to stop at least once in a while. If we think about technology, the real Golden Age was the 1900's - then technology as we know it appeared. Then the horse was replaced with the internal combustion engine, the mechanical calculus appeared, and so on. They could just as well claim all that Mr. Kurtzweil is claiming. But that technological development slowed down, not in terms of time - there are lots of technologies appearing - but in term of the number of technologies.

Today there a fewer technologies appearing and progressing, and that is not because today's humanity is less capable than the one in the 1900's, but society needs time in order to "digest" and cope with new technologies. That slows down naturally the development, and bends drasticaly the hyperbolic curve.

So, slow down, Ray!

That is correct
by: Anonymous

I'm sure that's what will happen. Teahnology grows faster and faster.

And what about the trickling down time?
by: Anonymous

Say it will happen (I believe colossal changes are coming our way anyway). Before the Singularity itself we will have a bunch of super powerful peoples, a very large number of hopeful people and the largest group of hostile and frightened people.

How long will the benefits take to trickle down? How? why?

In a time where the time itself accelerates, almost any delay is tremendous and opens the door to catastrophe (like war against the Singularitarians).

I clarify that I believe the meme of the Singularity something positive.
I started following Kurzweil in 2005 when The Singularity is Near came out. I even got pictures with the nice man (I missed the chance to ask these questions).
But eh last bit of the process is the most dangerous one.

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