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The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Ray Kurzweil
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1. Januar 2000
Ray Kurzweil is the inventor of the most innovative and compelling technology of our era, an international authority on artificial intelligence, and one of our greatest living visionaries. Now he offers a framework for envisioning the twenty-first century--an age in which the marriage of human sensitivity and artificial intelligence fundamentally alters and improves the way we live. Kurzweil's prophetic blueprint for the future takes us through the advances that inexorably result in computers exceeding the memory capacity and computational ability of the human brain by the year 2020 (with human-level capabilities not far behind); in relationships with automated personalities who will be our teachers, companions, and lovers; and in information fed straight into our brains along direct neural pathways. Optimistic and challenging, thought-provoking and engaging, The Age of Spiritual Machines is the ultimate guide on our road into the next century.

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The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence + The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology + How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed
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  • Taschenbuch: 400 Seiten
  • Verlag: Penguin Books (1. Januar 2000)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0140282025
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140282023
  • Vom Hersteller empfohlenes Alter: Ab 18 Jahren
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 23,5 x 15,3 x 2,3 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.9 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (72 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 24.480 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
  • Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen

Mehr über den Autor

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How much do we humans enjoy our current status as the most intelligent beings on earth? Enough to try to stop our own inventions from surpassing us in smarts? If so, we'd better pull the plug right now, because if Ray Kurzweil is right we've only got until about 2020 before computers outpace the human brain in computational power. Kurzweil, artificial intelligence expert and author of The Age of Intelligent Machines, shows that technological evolution moves at an exponential pace. Further, he asserts, in a sort of swirling postulate, time speeds up as order increases, and vice versa. He calls this the "Law of Time and Chaos," and it means that although entropy is slowing the stream of time down for the universe overall, and thus vastly increasing the amount of time between major events, in the eddy of technological evolution the exact opposite is happening, and events will soon be coming faster and more furiously. This means that we'd better figure out how to deal with conscious machines as soon as possible--they'll soon not only be able to beat us at chess, but also likely demand civil rights, and might at last realize the very human dream of immortality.

The Age of Spiritual Machines is compelling and accessible, and not necessarily best read from front to back--it's less heavily historical if you jump around (Kurzweil encourages this). Much of the content of the book lays the groundwork to justify Kurzweil's timeline, providing an engaging primer on the philosophical and technological ideas behind the study of consciousness. Instead of being a gee-whiz futurist manifesto, Spiritual Machines reads like a history of the future, without too much science fiction dystopianism. Instead, Kurzweil shows us the logical outgrowths of current trends, with all their attendant possibilities. This is the book we'll turn to when our computers first say "hello." --Therese Littleton

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Ray Kurzweil is a prize-winning author and scientist. Recipient of the MIT-Lemelson Prize (the world’s largest for innovation), and inducted into the Inventor’s Hall of Fame, he received the 1999 National Medal of Technology. His books include The Age of Spiritual Machines and The Age of Intelligent Machines.

Visit Ray Kurzweil on the web:


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As we start at the beginning, we will notice an unusual attribute of the nature of time, one that is critical to our passage to the twenty-first century. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Von Lene
There are lots of reasons to criticize this book, especially ten years after it was written. Nevertheless, I completely endorse it, whether you agree with the author or not. "The Age of Spiritual Machines" is about no less than the future evolution of mankind, and this is a topic everybody should be concerned about and (still) almost nobody is.

Kurzweil is a relentless optimist, both about the time frame of his predictions and about their implications. Reading his predictions for the year 2009, two economy crashes after the book was written, makes you want to smile about the naivete prevailing in the late nineties, the New Economy times when everything seemed possible. Kurzweil also mostly ignores social and political factors, basing his book solely on a technological view of development. That there are more factors to societal progress than technology was clear even in the nineties. In ignoring those factors, Kurzweil outs himself as a complete technocrat, a computer geek without much contact with the "Real World (TM)".

Also, he bases all his assumptions on his self-styled "Law of Accelerating Returns", which (simplified) states that evolution accelerates exponentially, that evolution compulsorily leads to technology and computing, and that computing power grows exponentially over time (as per Moore's Law). While his deduction of this so-called law is plausible, it is by no means scientifically sound. Plausibility is no substitute for scientific rigor. (The idea that god placed dinosaur bones in the ground when he created the Earth six thousand years ago is plausible too, if only you want to believe it.) This law could at best be called a conjecture. Still, Kurzweil accepts it uncritically as a fact and bases his book entirely on it.
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Von Ein Kunde
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is definitely an adventure. I'll admit I found some parts challenging, such as some of the quantum physics stuff, but like all good books, this one is worth more than a few reads. Just the historical perspective is valuable - Mr. Kurzweil has put together a very comprehensive overview of the development of key ideas in Western civilization relevant to his ideas about the future. I especially appreciate that he discusses, in detail, the philosophical views that have shaped our world. And the timeline is fascinating. It is just amazing how quickly technology has advanced, especially over the past 50 or so years. One important aspect that a lot of futurists seem to miss is this accelerating pace of technical advancement. One of the things I really like about this book is that it does not present farfetched visions and is not based on a limited worldview. Because the logic behind Kurzweil's train of thought is so grounded in facts and rational progressions, the predictions are unsettling, if not downright scary. He never says that computers will necessarily be conscious or "spiritual." He only says that we will eventually accept that they are. Although I am convinced, after reading the book, that extremely advanced new forms of intelligence will happen, exactly how this will all play out is not yet clear. Our earth, the universe, and we humans are all ultimately unpredictable in the actual stories that will unfold. He acknowledges that a man-made, environmental, or celestial disaster could put and end to the current trend in technological growth - although, he does firmly believe that technology, as a natural extension of evolution, will inevitably develop beyond its organic origins. Although I am not a scientist myself, I know an important book when I see one. And, I would encourage teachers to include this book in their curriculums - lots to think about!
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4.0 von 5 Sternen A Flawed Masterpiece 26. Januar 1999
Although not a perfect book, "The Age of Spiritual Machines" is destined (IMO) to become one of the more important books of the late 20th Century.
Kurzweil begins all the way back at the Big Bang, clearly unable to limit his scope to something more appropriate. He starts with an outdated summary of creation physics, then contrasts the slowing timeline of phase changes in the universe with the speeding up of the evolution of life -- as if the two are somehow related. He puts forth the curious idea that technology is "inevitable" wherever life evolves. Both these arguments exemplify the homocentric hubris that the universe was created for the emergence of mankind.
Nevermind. Skip the first chapter (as Kurzweil himself suggests in the prefatory note) and you'll quickly get into the good stuff. His chapters on the evolution of intelligence and the growth of computing power are well founded.
Where he really hits his stride however is in the second section, "Preparing the Present," where he puts forth cogent arguments for quantum computing based on DNA, mentality-enhancing neural implants, and "downloading your mind to your personal computer." He then goes on to discuss nanotechnology and life-extending technologies. This section alone is worth the price of the book.
After the past and the present, he gives quick snapshots of where he thinks we may be in 10, 20, 30, and 100 years. These too are well thought out and insightful. He is generally conservative, foreseeing no large "phase changes" which could radically affect current trends. It'll be interesting to check back to see how his predictions held up.
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Die neuesten Kundenrezensionen
5.0 von 5 Sternen Das Buch hat meine Weltanschaung verändert
Ich habe es nochnicht ganz durch, aber mir hat es schon jetzt mehr als genug denkanstösse gegeben. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 13. Dezember 2000 von Soulreaper
5.0 von 5 Sternen evolution of technologie in the terms of memetics
Kurzweils assumption that technological development is just a inevitable effect of biological evolution made him vulnerable for criticism. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 28. November 2000 von
4.0 von 5 Sternen A very good book, but...
I enjoyed this book very much; there is no doubt Kurzweil is an engaging, convincing, and even daring author with an impressive track record for his predictions. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 19. September 2000 veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen optomistic view of a depressing future
Kurtzweil's future is astonishingly different than most of what one comes across in contemporary science and science fiction writing. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 19. Juli 2000 von Alan Brown
5.0 von 5 Sternen Quick and Simple
This book gives some insight to the possible future, and makes you think what you might be able to do with it...
Veröffentlicht am 27. Juni 2000 von "graphite200"
2.0 von 5 Sternen evolution misunderstood
Kurzweil's book is based for a large part on the premise that evolution (biological evolution) leads to ever more complex forms as if that is the 'goal' of evolution. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 26. Juni 2000 von goossens r.a.e.
5.0 von 5 Sternen A Potentially Flawed Premise Still Offers Amazing Insight
This book is simply amazing! Its portrait of the computing world to come (as well as the developing one of today) is both fascinating and horrifying. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 17. Juni 2000 von Scott Eckert
4.0 von 5 Sternen So overconfident, Kurzweil misses the obvious
Kurzweil misses a very crucial point when it comes to intelligence and behavior. All behavior centers around survival and reproduction, and the human brain comes equipped with... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 14. Juni 2000 von Luv to Read
1.0 von 5 Sternen A book built on fundamentally flawed assumptions
This was a book so torturous, so sensationalistic, it was a brutally difficult read. Unfortunately, the premises of this book are so crucially flawed for all but the most... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 7. Juni 2000 von Christopher Farrell
5.0 von 5 Sternen difficult to put down
Even though I haven't finished this book, so far I've found it simply fascinating. Maybe it's because this is a possible future I'm looking forward to. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 1. Juni 2000 von JOHN NATHAN
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