Re: Stewart Brand's The Clock of the Long Now

From: Anders Sandberg (
Date: Sun Jan 14 2001 - 12:12:20 MST

Damien Broderick <> writes:

> I haven't found a copy yet. Anyone care to summarize what the book says
> about the prospects, and likely impact for their project, of an impending
> technological singularity?

They have a short chapter on the singularity. Essentially they don't
approve of it - it is exactly the kind of planning horizon they
disapprove of: "Oh, we cannot plan beyond that since by definition
everything will be changed", which makes people discount the long
future. Instead of seeing it as an inevitability (like many here) they
consider it just another possible scenario that may or may not
happen. In fact, an unattractive scenario that might even be
deliberately avoided by people.

It doesn't really impact the clock project, which is really about more
than the physical clock. I get the impression that the real impact of
the project is intended to occur in the present (and then hopefully
accumulate over long time; I really like some of their library
projects), so even if everything get changed at some point by a
singularity it doesn't diminish the present value of the project.

I liked the book - transhumanism is not just about singularities and
femtosecond processes, it is also about the real long span of human
(and posthuman) evolution. Getting a feeling of deep time is healthy,
just as learning to enjoy the rush of change.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y 

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