RE: Hans Moravec

Billy Brown (
Sun, 21 Nov 1999 12:36:33 -0600 wrote:
> The problem with this line of reasoning is that it is unlikely that the
> rate of growth of knowledge can continue to be proportional to total
> computing power. Diminishing returns will kick in,

Not anytime soon. "Make faster computers" is more like "make more efficient factories" than "make faster airplanes", in that it allows a great deal of latitude in taking different approaches to get around physical constraints. Currently we don't see any hard limits on what is possible until you reach the realm of large-scale nanocomputer networks, and minds with that kind of hardware to work with would be so far ahead of us that it seems unlikely that we could accurately predict their limitations.

> and further there
> will be "friction" losses and inefficiency in coordinating the increasing
> number of computers (and people) in the world.

The current trend is in the opposite direction. Increasing automation allows you to replace inefficient human interaction with ever more efficient types of software interaction, which give huge increases overall efficiency. Again, I don't see a hard limit until the system becomes so fast that light speed delays are the limiting factor, and that doesn't happen until you've gone well beyond most people's concept of a post-singularity world.

Billy Brown, MCSE+I