February 27, 2009

Charlie Stross on the Singularity: "Forget it"

Science fiction writer and futurist Charlie Stross has published his FAQ for the 21st Century. In discussing the technological Singularity he notes:
The rapture of the nerds, like space colonization, is likely to be a non-participatory event for 99.999% of humanity — unless we're very unlucky. If it happens and it's interested in us, all our plans go out the window. If it doesn't happen, sitting around waiting for the AIs to save us from the rising sea level/oil shortage/intelligent bioengineered termites looks like being a Real Bad Idea. The best approach to the singularity is to apply Pascal's Wager — in reverse — and plan on the assumption that it ain't going to happen, much less save us from ourselves.
I strongly recommend you read the entire FAQ.


Anonymous said...

I think he's right in that it's not something to concern oneself with (unless you're writing sci-fi). If it's going to happen, we can't do anything about it or have any real control over how it happens.

brian wang said...

Serious space colonization can start 10 years after a significant group/country chooses to develop and deploy Orion.

Tech feasibility is there and would resolve all issues of being too long in space or not being able to bring along enough protection or supplies.

Progress to cognitive enhancement is also clearly progressing.