Kurzweil predictions on the future of technology and humanity

He is a businessman, multi-award-winning inventor, writer, Engineering director at Google, creator of the first complete OCR (Optical Character Recognition) system and some of the most well-known musical synthesizers in the world who has been awarded an Honoris Causa Doctorate by multiple universities … and also a futurist.

When talking about Ray Kurzweil, there are loads of things to talk about, but we will focus on his predictions on the future of technology and the influence on Humanity.

Creator of terms such as the Technological Singularity, if we look at his successes in the past, most of his predictions were right. He was able to foresee the massive use of the Internet before its commercial boom, and he was also able to predict 10 years before (and a margin of error of only a few months) when a computer would be able to defeat a top chess player. Due to these predictions, his opinions are always taken into account to the point that he was considered “the best person at predicting the future of Artificial Intelligence” by different personalities, such as the famous Bill Gates.

Kurzweil predictions. What does the future look like?

Along with his background and his demonstrated capacity, it is very interesting to point out some ideas that Kurzweil has on how technology will change our lives in the upcoming years. Some of these are described in the 1998 book “The Age of Spiritual Machines”. Get ready, and enjoy the ride, it will be worth it!

-Farewell keyboards!

During the 20s of this century (between 2020 and 2030) people will interact with machines just like they do now with other human beings. Keyboards will disappear and verbal communication will be fluid. Computers will have an amazing computing capacity and their software will be able to understand natural language just like human beings. Personal virtual assistants will be widely used.

-Wearable technology will be everywhere. Another one of these Kurzweil predictions

During the 20s of this century, computers will also be part of our clothing or our home. We will finally be able to say goodbye to cable connections, which, in turn, will lead to improvements in technologies such as virtual and augmented reality.

-Self-driving cars will be real.

He said that before 2030, driving would be performed by non-human intelligent systems, to the point that humans might not be allowed to drive anymore. Traffic accidents and deaths due to this will decrease drastically.

-Popularization of robots and A.I.

Domestic robots will be used massively. Some human beings will establish such deep relationships with their virtual assistants that some will worry about protecting them as individuals and “their rights”. This will also happen before 2030.

-The rise of the A.I.

In the following decades, before 2050, Artificial Intelligence will have been developed in such a way that the computational capacity of computers will outperform (more than 1000 times) the human brain. Most of the intellectual activity on the planet will be carried out by artificial intelligences.

-Brain-Internet connection.

Brain implants will connect our brain directly to the network, which will allow us to enter into virtual worlds indistinguishable from the real world. They will also provide us with “extra” features for the human being, such as an increase in our memory or intelligence. This will also happen before 2050.

-The end of poverty, violence and diseases.

Due to the massive degree of technological development, wars, hunger or disease will have disappeared almost completely. Kurzweil also expects this utopian future before 2050.

-Conscious Artificial Intelligence.

Also before 2050, artificial intelligences will claim to have self-awareness, which will cause an incredible social transformation. And it’s very likely that a process to grant them protection and rights will be developed.

-Nanotechnology will change the world. Another one of these Kurzweil predictions.

A few years later, before 2070, nanotechnology will have reached such level of development that we will be able to transform all kinds of physical objects at our will. For example, food will be created entirely by Nanomachines.

-Virtual immortality.

Before the end of the current Century, most of life and intelligence will be developed in a virtual substratum. Human beings will have definitively merged with artificial intelligences, living without their usual physical form. We will live inside computers.

This type of “beings” (which we can hardly call “human beings”) will blend themselves continuously, sharing all kinds of experiences and knowledge. To ensure their survival, these entities will create backup copies of themselves, guaranteeing their immortality. Computer viruses will become a real significant threat.

-The Intelligence Boom.

Without a fixed term, Kurzweil claims that this entire intelligence boom generated in Planet Earth will expand throughout the Universe.

Do you feel dizzy? It is normal. We feel dizzy too! One of Kurzweil’s premises for making such daring predictions is a theory created by himself known as the Law of Accelerated Returns, which means that technology is progressing at an increasing rate, faster than our “linear” way of thinking, which would cause unthinkable advances in just a few decades.

Will Kurzweil predictions come true? What is your opinion? Do you think any of these predictions are useful? Are you aware of this? Have you ever heard of this?
Some of these predictions will bring great advantages and will also make our lives a lot easier but also will bring great disadvantages for us humans, as this “technology” could get out of hand. Have you seen any films about this topic?
Or any TV series related to this? Let us know!
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