Re: The Singularity

Dan Clemmensen (
Fri, 17 Jul 1998 18:41:27 -0400

Eugene Leitl wrote:
> Robin Hanson writes:
> > Are you saying, for example, that on average the forecasts I might make
> > today about 2098 are no more accurate than the forecast an ancestor of
> > mine might have made in 1898 about 2098?
> Essentially, yes. Assuming, 2098 is PostSingularity you can only safely
> exclude anything not in accordance with physical laws, but given what
> little we know this set of constraints is not very stringent. Of
> course if we run into saturation it might turn out your predictions
> are accurate, after all. Point is, we can't tell yet what actually
> happens.
Oh, what the heck, let's give Robin a bit more than that. Since we have a better understanding of the laws of physics, we can exclude more. Also, the curve leading to the singularity was much more subtle and harder to discern in 1898 than now, so Einstein, Hertz, Maxwell, Twain, et. al. can be excused for not predicting a singularity. They can be excused for believing that human culture would persist to 2098. We cannot.