Re: Knowledge Doubling Time & Singularity?

From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Date: Mon Feb 18 2002 - 12:52:27 MST

BigBooster wrote:
> "Progress in medicine is expanding so rapidly that the doubling time for
> medical knowledge is now about four years. That means that during the
> next four years, we will learn as much about medicine as was discovered
> from the beginning of human existence until now." -- Jerry Emanuelson
> <>

Which is just not true. I can't remember any medical discovery since I was,
say, thirteen, that was as dramatic as Pasteur's refutation of spontaneous
generation, the synthesis of uric acid, the discovery of the smallpox vaccine,
et cetera.

The number of papers published does not necessarily measure the amount

In fact, if you track the amount of exponential-doubling hype out there, and
the rate of its increase, I think that by 2008 you'll find people predicting
that the Singularity will occur in 1840.

-- -- -- -- --
Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
Research Fellow, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

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