Ray Kurzweil invented the Kurzweil keyboard, predicted the fall of the Soviet Union, and foresaw the defeat of chess genius Gary Kasparov at the hands of a computer. I heard Ray speak at Summit Series a few weeks ago, and the guy had the same effect on me that he had with everyone else in the room -- We were all pretty stunned. So I bought his book, which I should have done years ago, and began reading it. Ray's book, THE SINGULARITY IS NEAR, ponders a post-biological world in which the course of human development leads us to inconceivable heights of intelligence, progress and longevity.
Meaning, among other things, that we will have microchips in our brains and bodies in the next 25 years. So when you want to learn how to play chess, you can just embed the chess chip in your head. Why read a book, when you can just download it into your brain. Got a disease? Just download a program to kill it. The permutations are driving me nuts, so I try not to think about what this will mean for our kids. Most mornings, I check out Shelly Palmer's blog. Last week, Shelly did a post about Mark Gasson, a British scientist, who wondered what would happen if the computer chips in surgically implanted prosthetics got computer viruses. To find out, Mark infected himself with a computer virus. Shelly commented: "Sound funny? No one is going to thinks it's funny when computer virus on a wireless network can kill you. It may sound like science fiction, trust me, it isn't." Here's Engadget's frighteningly real story.