Difference between revisions of "Singularitarianism"

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'''Singularitarianism''' refers to attitudes or beliefs favoring a [[Technological singularity|technological singularity]]. The term was coined by Mark Plus, then given a more specific meaning by [[Eliezer Yudkowsky]] in his [http://yudkowsky.net/obsolete/principles.html Singularitarian principles]. "Singularitarianism", early on, referred to an principled activist stance aimed at creating a singularity for the benefit of humanity as a whole, and in particular to the movement surrounding the [[Singularity Institute]]. In Yudkowsky's [http://lesswrong.com/lw/m0/guardians_of_the_gene_pool/gzo later words]:
'''Singularitarianism''' is an ideology that centers around the belief that a technological [[Singularity]] is a desirable and achievable goal for humanity in the near term future. Advocates believe that future technology will create a world where death and disease have been eliminated, [[superintelligence]] will emerge and society becomes post-scarcity. This has led to some critics to accuse the movement of being a religion and mockingly refer to the singularity as being the "rapture of the nerds"
 
  
However, many Singularitarians reject that the movement is a religion, arguing that they are free from authoritarian dogma, individuals are not required to have any mystical beliefs and there are no penalties for being a non-believer or any long term additional benefits for believers over non-believers.
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<blockquote>Mark Plus coined the term "Singularitarian", but didn't do much with it; when I decided to build a Singularitarian movement, I asked Mark Plus for ownership of the word and was granted it; and I define the term to involve activism.</blockquote>
  
There is also no definitive text that believers have to subscribe to. Though several leading figures from the movement have written extensively about what it means to be a Singularitarian. These include Ray Kurzweil, Eliezer Yudkowsky and Nick Bostrom, as well as countless academic papers from many others discussing the feasibility of Singularitarian technology.
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The term has since sometimes been used differently, without it implying the specific principles listed by Yudkowsky. For example, [[Ray Kurzweil]]'s book "The Singularity Is Near" contains a chapter titled [http://cmisley.wordpress.com/2009/05/18/chapter-seven-ich-bin-ein-singularitarian/ "Ich bin ein Singularitarian"], in which Kurzweil describes his own vision. Other examples are [http://www.singularityweblog.com/top-10-singularitarians/ this blog post] and the song [http://www.kurzweilai.net/i-am-the-very-model-of-a-singularitarian "I am the very model of a Singularitarian"], whose protagonist's ambition to "expand his mental faculties by merging with technology" also suggests a more Kurzweilian view. Others have used "Singularitarian" to refer to anyone who predicts a technological singularity will happen.
  
There is also an active, online community and annual gatherings of Singularitarians at events such as the Singularity Summit.
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Yudkowsky has (perhaps facetiously) [http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael/blog/2008/09/singularitarian/ suggested] that those adhering to the original activist stance relabel themselves "elder Singularitarians".  
  
 
==External Links==
 
==External Links==

Revision as of 17:53, 28 June 2012

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Singularitarianism refers to attitudes or beliefs favoring a technological singularity. The term was coined by Mark Plus, then given a more specific meaning by Eliezer Yudkowsky in his Singularitarian principles. "Singularitarianism", early on, referred to an principled activist stance aimed at creating a singularity for the benefit of humanity as a whole, and in particular to the movement surrounding the Singularity Institute. In Yudkowsky's later words:

Mark Plus coined the term "Singularitarian", but didn't do much with it; when I decided to build a Singularitarian movement, I asked Mark Plus for ownership of the word and was granted it; and I define the term to involve activism.

The term has since sometimes been used differently, without it implying the specific principles listed by Yudkowsky. For example, Ray Kurzweil's book "The Singularity Is Near" contains a chapter titled "Ich bin ein Singularitarian", in which Kurzweil describes his own vision. Other examples are this blog post and the song "I am the very model of a Singularitarian", whose protagonist's ambition to "expand his mental faculties by merging with technology" also suggests a more Kurzweilian view. Others have used "Singularitarian" to refer to anyone who predicts a technological singularity will happen.

Yudkowsky has (perhaps facetiously) suggested that those adhering to the original activist stance relabel themselves "elder Singularitarians".

External Links

See Also