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« Science, Power, and Nanotechnology | Main | Accelerating Change »

December 11, 2004


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Michael Vassar

You can go farther than that. Steven Hawking has strongly asserted on multiple occasions that he does expect superhuman AI to be developed within 50 years, and that there is a significant chance that it will end human life. Other people who take this possibility seriously include the following list, first compiled by Michael Annisimov. If you know any of these people, or know anyone who knows any of them, please contact me to discuss building a singularity aware network/discussion group. Chris, does this list belong on Wise Nano under the heading "potential singularitarian discussion group"?

Arthur C. Clarke
Futurist, visionary, author of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Profiles of the Future
www.lsi.usp.br/~rbianchi/clarke/ - 225,000 results
John Robb
Former President and CEO of Userland Software
http://jrobb.mindplex.org/ - 70,900 results
Bill Joy
Software pioneer, formerly Chief Scientist at Sun Microsystems
http://www.sun.com/aboutsun/media/ceo/mgt_joy.html/ - 69,900 results
John von Neumann, Ph.D
Computing pioneer, information theorist, theoretical physicist, decision theorist
http://ei.cs.vt.edu/~history/VonNeumann.html - 66,400 results
Stanislaw Lem
Science fiction author, philosopher
http://www.cyberiad.info/english/main.htm - 50,100 results
Freeman Dyson, Ph.D
Former professor of physics at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton
http://www.sns.ias.edu/~dyson/ - 30,700 results
Marvin Minsky, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science at MIT, author of Society of Mind
http://web.media.mit.edu/~minsky/ - 30,500 results
Ray Kurzweil, Ph.D
Entrepreneur, author of The Age of Spiritual Machines and the forthcoming The Singularity is Near
www.kurzweiltech.com/ - 28,100 results
Vernor Vinge, Ph.D
Professor of Mathematics at San Diego University, author of A Deepness in the Sky
www.ugcs.caltech.edu/~phoenix/vinge - 27,700 results
William Calvin, Ph.D
Professor of Neurobiology at Washington University, author of A Brain for All Seasons
http://williamcalvin.com/index.html - 20,900 results
K. Eric Drexler, Ph.D
Father of nanotechnology, author of Engines of Creation and Nanosystems
www.foresight.org/FI/Drexler.html - 20,600 results
Sir Martin Rees
Professor of Astronomy and Cosmology, author of Our Final Hour
http://www.ast.cam.ac.uk/IoA/staff/mjr/ -16,300 results
Douglas Engelbart, Ph.D
Computing pioneer, inventor of the mouse, professor of Computer Science
www.bootstrap.org/ - 15,800 results
Jaron Lanier
Software pioneer, Chief Scientist of Eyematic Interfaces, Inc.
www.well.com/user/jaron/ - 14,500 results
Ben Goertzel, Ph.D
Professor of Mathematics, AGI researcher, entrepreneur, author
http://www.goertzel.org/ - 14,400 results
Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
AGI researcher, Research Fellow of the Singularity Institute for AI
http://yudkowsky.net/ - 14,200 results
Greg Egan
Science fiction author, computer programmer
http://gregegan.customer.netspace.net.au/ - 13,600 results
Max More, Ph.D
Professor of Philosophy, Chairman of the Extropy Institute, business consultant, futurist
http://www.maxmore.com/ - 12,600 results
Hans Moravec, Ph.D
Roboticist at Carnegie Mellon University, author of Mind Children
http://www.frc.ri.cmu.edu/~hpm/ - 12,200 results
Eugen Leitl
Chemist, transhumanist writer and speaker
http://www.lrz-muenchen.de/~ui22204/.html/eleitl-cv.html - 11,500 results
Anders Sandberg, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science, neurobiologist, transhumanist writer and speaker
http://www.nada.kth.se/~asa/cv.html - 10,200 results
Damien Broderick, Ph.D
Futurist, author of The Last Mortal Generation and The Spike
http://www.panterraweb.com/the_spike.htm - 9,840 results
Peter Voss
AGI researcher, entrepreneur
http://www.optimal.org/peter/peter.htm - 9,400 results
Stephen Hawkings, Ph.D
Theoretical physicist, author of A Brief History of Time
http://www.hawking.org.uk/ - 9,270 results
Gregory Stock, Ph.D
UCLA bioethicist, author of Metaman and Redesigning Humans
http://research.mednet.ucla.edu/pmts/Stock.htm - 8,880 results
John Smart
Systems theorist, futurist, author of SingularityWatch.com
http://www.singularitywatch.com/bio_johnsmart.html - 8,460 results
Hal Finney
Futurist, engineer, cryptographer
http://www.finney.org/~hal/ - 7,120 results
Samantha Atkins
Software architect
http://www.singinst.org/comments/statements.html - 5,920 results
Robin Hanson, Ph.D
Professor of Economics at George Mason University
http://hanson.gmu.edu/ - 5,810 results
Bart Kosko, Ph.D
Professor of Electrical Engineering, author of Heaven in a Chip
http://sipi.usc.edu/~kosko/ - 5,580 results
Christopher Phoenix
Director of Research, Center for Responsible Nanotechnology
http://xenophilia.org/ - 4,790 results
Christine Peterson
President of the Foresight Institute, nanotechnology spokesperson
www.foresight.org/FI/Peterson.html - 4,630 results
Nick Bostrom, Ph.D
Professor of Philosophy at Cambridge University
http://www.nickbostrom.com/ - 4,620 results
Frank Tipler, Ph.D
Professor of Mathematics at Tulane University, author of The Physics of Immortality
http://www.math.tulane.edu/~tipler/ - 4,410 results
James Hughes, Ph.D
Director of the World Transhumanist Association, author of the forthcoming Cyborg Democracy
http://www.changesurfer.com/Hughes.html - 4,200 results
Hugo de Garis, Ph.D
AI researcher, neural network pioneer, futurist, author
http://www.cs.usu.edu/~degaris/ - 3,440 results
Francis Heylighen, Ph.D
Research professor, author of the Principia Cybernetica Project
http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/HEYL.html - 3,340 results
I.J. Good, Ph.D
Computing pioneer, probability theorist, polymath, futurist
http://ei.cs.vt.edu/~history/Good.html - 2,970 results
Alex J. Champandard
Programmer, AI researcher, webmaster
http://ai-depot.com - 2,790 results
Brian Atkins
Venture capitalist, Director of the Singularity Institute for AI
http://www.posthuman.com - 2,580 results
Pei Wang, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science, AGI researcher
http://www.cis.temple.edu/~pwang/ - 2,260 results
Natasha Vita-More
President of the Extropy Institute, transhumanist writer, artist
http://www.natasha.cc/ - 2,240 results
Bruce J. Klein
Life extension activist, founder of the Immortality Institute for Infinite Lifespans
http://imminst.org - 1,600 results
J. Storrs Hall, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science, nanotechnology pioneer
www.imm.org/HallCV.html - 1,490 results
Michael Anissimov
Futurist, Singularity writer, co-directs the Immortality Institute for Infinite Lifespans
http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael - 1,200 results
Mike Treder
Executive Director, Center for Responsible Nanotechnology
www.kurzweilai.net/bios/bio0219.html - 1,030 results
Stephen Reed, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science, AI researcher for Cycorp
http://www.sl4.org/archive/0205/3754.html - 919 results
Joseph N. Pelton, Ph.D
Research Professor for the Institute for Applied Space Research
http://www.clarkeinstitute.com/lecture8.html - 851 results
Eric Boyd, Ph.D
Professor of Computer Science, entrepreneur, software architect
http://www.eecs.umich.edu/PPP/eric-boyd.html - 820 results
Gordon Worley
Programmer, Singularity advocate, transhumanist
http://homepage.mac.com/redbird/ - 800 results
James N. Gardner
Complexity theorist, science essayist, cosmologist, author of The Selfish Biocosm Hypothesis
http://www.biocosm.org/ - 500 results
Mike LaTorra
Director of the World Transhumanist Association, teacher, author of The Modern Tao
http://www.transhumanism.org/speakersbureau.htm#LaTorra - 300 results
Lyle Burkhead
Nanotechnology critic, futurist
http://www.geniebusters.org/ - 200 results
Phil Bowermaster
IT and Telecommunications company manager, blogger
http://www.speculist.com/ - 180 results

Chris Phoenix, CRN

Yes, nano-enabled AI would seem to be a valid topic for Wise-Nano.

"Singularitarian" is too jargon-y. I'd pick a more obvious title, something like "Massive disruptive runaway change."


Mike Deering

What method do you use to get the results numbers? I put "John Robb" into Google and got 219,000 results. Your number of 70,900 seems a little low.

micheal vassar

Michael Annisimov put together the list months ago. Google's probably more powerful now than then.


I believe one SF author (maybe Asimov or Clarke) once commented that, contrary to exciting stories of evil AIs run amok, there'no reason why AIs couldn't turn out to be more moral, more good, and more wise than humans.

Michael Vassar

Of course there isn't. There is obviously no reason at all to expect AIs to be evil. There is every reason to expect them to do exactly what they are told to do, whatever the intended or unintended consequences. That's where the evil comes in.

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