Re: extropians-digest V1 #110

Michael Lorrey (
Mon, 18 Nov 1996 09:08:23 -0500

Robin Hanson wrote:
> Eliezer Yudkowsky writes:
> >The essence of the Singularity is that a smarter being has an
> >increased capacity to invent still smarter beings; that's why
> >everything goes to infinity. ...
> >Computer power doubles every two years.
> >Computer power doubles every two *subjective* years.
> >Computer power goes to infinity four years after computer researchers
> >reach human equivalence.
> >Mathematically, I believe it's called a "singularity".
> >You don't need enhanced smartness to outrun *any* task no matter
> >*how* it scales up, all you need is recursive Moore's Law.
> 1. Computer power does not equal smartness.
> 2. You'll need a bit more detailed argument to show that computer power
> doubles every two subjective years.
> Robin D. Hanson

Actually, the current rate is still on line with Moore's Law. More is
one of Intel's founders, and came up with the observation that computers
were (for equivalent cost) doubling in power every 18 months (not two
years), and the cost of the same power computer was decreasing by half
every 18 months. THis is used by software and electronic product
manufacturers worldwide to time the introduction of products and
technologies to the marketplace. When the price of the computational
power they need for a given product decreases to the point at which it
is cost effective to put that product on the market, they do so. Doing
so beforehand is a money loser.