BOOK | by Ray Kurzweilthe Singularity Is Near

When humans transcend biology.
January 1, 2020

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— in this post —

~ about | the book
~ books by Ray Kurzweil
~ comments from publications
~ reviews by publications
~ lists + awards
~ celebrity quotes


book title: the Singularity Is Near
deck: When humans transcend biology.
author: by Ray Kurzweil
year: 2005


This book is available at fine book-sellers.


about | the book

the Singularity Is Near
When humans transcend biology.

The role of tech in humanity’s future.

For over 30 years best-selling author, inventor, and futurist Ray Kurzweil has been one of the most respected and provocative advocates of the role of tech in our future.

In his optimistic book — the Singularity Is Near — Kurzweil explains that civilization will soon achieve new heights of intelligence, material progress, and longevity. In the 21 century, humanity stands on the verge of the most transformative era in history. Human life will be enriched, but also challenged, as we end biological disability like aging + disease — and surpass limits to human thinking + perception.

The next step in our evolution.

He presents the startling argument: that with the ever-accelerating rate of technological advance, computers will soon be capable of the full range of human intelligence + abilities. Kurzweil examines the next step in evolution: the union of human + machine. He imagines that the know-how + skills inherent in human intellect will be combined with vastly greater capacity, speed, and knowledge-sharing ability of computers.

This will happen through human / machine interfaces and cybernetics that haven’t yet been invented. But also through virtual / augmented immersive realities — and wearable digital tech — that we already use today.

Astonishing new capabilities + abundance.

He calls this merger the singularity — a future time in the history of civilization where human intelligence + capability will become non-biological, and trillions of times more powerful. He explains this is the dawn of a new society — enabling us to live better, solve the world’s biggest crises, and amplify our creativity. At the heart of this sea-change: is the proliferation and increasing power of digital devices.

In the near future, Kurzweil says there will be no clear distinction between human + machine, real reality + virtual reality. People will be able to take the shape of different virtual bodies — or control remote physical avatars. Human aging + illness will be cured. We’ll end pollution, hunger, and poverty — ushering-in abundance and equity world-wide.

Technologies like micro-sized nano-tech and novel materials will make it possible to create astonishing physical products. Manufacturing will become inexpensive as economies-of-scale, robotics, and better digital processes make factories cheaper.

But with this profound progress, there are also new threats — from increasingly powerful tech like robotics, particle physics, biological contagions, chemical warfare, high-tech pollution, and advanced weapons. Plus the risk of easier access to ever-more dangerous abilities — by terrorist groups or individuals.

In conclusion.

Ultimately, Ray Kurzweil maintains an inspiring view of tomorrow: our future will be a dramatic culmination of centuries of tech ingenuity. His series of books is designed to be read in order: tracking the development of tech + science + world progress — as we move forward in time. He makes bold predictions with incredible accuracy — a 20-year track record that unfolds through-out his writings from 1999 to today.


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comments | from publications

publication: the New York Times
quote: Startling in scope and bravado.

publication: the Los Angeles Times
quote: Artfully envisions a breathtakingly better world.

publication: the Boston Globe
quote: Elaborate, smart, and persuasive.

publication: the Wall Street Journal
quote: A pleasure to read.


reviews | by publications

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best book | from lists

broadcast: CBS
list: the best fall books ~ year 2005

publication: the St. Louis Dispatch
list: the best non-fiction books ~ year 2005

shop: Amazon
list: the best science Books ~ year 2005


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quotes | from celebrities

quote: by Bill Gates
bio: founder of Microsoft
bio: philanthropist

Ray Kurzweil is the best person I know at predicting the future of artificial intelligence.


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— notes —

AI = artificial intelligence


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box 1: book | by Ray Kurzweil
box 2:

post title: the Singularity Is Near
deck: When humans transcend biology.

collection: Books by Ray Kurzweil
tab: books