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My Disappointment at the Future


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#1 forever freedom

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 04:31 AM


Well i've always been enthusiastic about the future ever since i started reading ray kurzweil's web materials and articles. I was a Kurzweil's big fan and believed most of what he said. But i must say i recently got a big hit in the nose at my expectations, because i've purchased "The Age of Spiritual Machines" (from year 1999) by Ray Kurzweil and he makes some predictions about technology of years 2000-2009.

I've got very disappointed at the predictions because many of them are still, in our current 2007, far from becoming true. So if kurzweil fails to make even short term predictions what can i say about long term ones? The impression i now started having is that he "rushes" these predictions so much so they will match his wishful thinking of being still alive when we have the technology to give us indefinite lifespans.

Still, i DO belive all his predictions will come true, but with some decades of delay, which might make Kurzweil feel unfomfortable, but i don't know, who am I to judge him anyways? I just got disappointed with the predictions he made in 1999 for the decade we're living.

Here they are, all found in the book, but i can't say where it is on the book because i got the audio version of it so i don't know the pages.



Predictions for the Decade of 2000-2009 by Ray Kurzweil

· Individuals primarily use portable computers
· Portable computers have dramatically become lighter and thinner
· Personal computers are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes, and are commonly embedded in clothing and jewelry, like wrist watches, rings, earrings and other body ornaments
· Computers with a high-resolution visual interface range from rings and pins and credit cards up to the size of a thin book. People typically have at least a dozen computers on and around their bodies, which are networked, using body LANS (local area networks)
· These computers monitor body functions, provide automated identity to conduct financial transactions and allow entry into secure areas. They also provide directions for navigation, and a variety of other services.
· Most portable computers do not have keyboards
· Rotating memories such as Hard Drives, CD roms, and DVDs are on their way out.
· Most users have servers on their homes and offices where they keep large stores of digital objects, including, among other things, virtual reality environments, although these are still on an early stage
· Cables are disappearing,
· The majority of texts is created using continuous speech recognition, or CSR (dictation software). CSRs are very accurate, far more than the human transcriptionists, who were used up until a few years ago.
· Books, magazines, and newspapers are now routinely read on displays that are the size of small books
· Computer displays built into eyeglasses are also used. These specialized glasses allow the users to see the normal environment while creating a virtual image that appears to hover in front of the viewer.
· Computers routinely include moving picture image cameras and are able to reliably identify their owners from their faces
· Three dimensional chips are commonly used
· Students from all ages have a portable computer, very thin and soft, weighting less than 1 pound. They interact with their computers primarily by voice and by pointing with a device that looks like a pencil. Keybords still exist but most textual language is created by speaking.
· Intelligent courseware has emerged as a common means of learning, recent controversial studies have shown that students can learn basic skills such as reading and math just as readily with interactive learning software as with human teachers.
· Schools are increasingly relying on software approaches. Many children learn to read on their own using personal computers before entering grade school.
· Persons with disabilities are rapidly overcoming their handicaps through intelligent technology
· Students with reading disabilities routinely use print to speech reading systems
· Print to speech reading machines for the blind are now very small, inexpensive, palm-size devices that can read books.
· Useful navigation systems have finally been developed to assist blind people in moving and avoiding obstacles. Those systems use GPS technology. The blind person communicates with his navigation system by voice.
· Deaf persons commonly use portable speech-to-text listening machines which display a real time transcription of what people are saying. The deaf user has the choice of either reading the transcribed speech as displayed text or watching an animated person gesturing in sign language.
· Listening machines cal also translate what is being said into another language in real-time, so they are commonly used by hearing people as well.
· There is a growing perception that the primary disabilities of blindness, deafness, and physical impairment do not necessarily. Disabled persons routinely describe their disabilities as mere inconveniences.
· In communications, translate telephone technology is commonly used. This allow you to speak in English, while your Japanese friend hears you in Japanese, and vice-versa.
· Telephones are primarily wireless and include high resolution moving images.
· Heptic technologies are emerging. They allow people to touch and feel objects and other persons at a distance. These force-feedback devices are wildly used in games and in training simulation systems. Interactive games routinely include all encompassing all visual and auditory environments.
· The 1999 chat rooms have been replaced with virtual environments.
· At least half of all transactions are conducted online
· Intelligent routes are in use, primarily for long distance travel. Once your car’s computer’s guiding system locks on to the control sensors on one of these highways, you can sit back, and relax.
· There is a growing neo-luditte movement.



---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Many of these predictions are very far from reality still, for some we have the technology to make it true but not the means to make it commercially viable, while for others we don't even have the technology needed for it, and i believe most of these can't be reached until 2009, as kurzweil stated in his book.


I believe the singularity kurzweil predicts to come at around 2045 will come some decades later.. around 2070-2100. I hope to be still alive by then, but if i'm not, you can visit me at Alcor [lol]

#2 Aegist

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 05:49 AM

Well while I do agree that there is some disappointment, indeed some of these predictions do seem quite hopeful, don't forget that there are still two years left in that timeframe, and part of exponential advancement is that 90% is done in the final 10%.

That taken into consideration though I think there are two major factors which Ray maybe doesn't take into full consideration in these short term predicitons. He makes his graphs from when technology is invented, and then predicts when we will see technology X, Y or Z in the future. Inventing the technology is not, as you correctly said, the same as having the technology commercially viable, nor does it ensure there is a marketplace for such items. Maybe we will have technology to have computers in our clothing by 2009...but even *I* someone who loves technology, am not excited by the idea of computer clothing. Maybe thats just because no one has *sold* me on the idea yet...but thats part of the equation which I doubt kurzweil factored in to the short term predictions. Commercialism and the uptake in society of new technology.


Secondly I think you overlook a lot of those predictions because they are not what they at first seem. For one, I don't think we 'primarily' use portable computers, but compared to 1999 laptops are incredibly more common AND nearly everyone has a PDA, an iPhone or some other sort of phone with internet access and windows installed. We DO see a nearly absolute predominence of portable computers...but the term "Primarily" may be misplaced. I still prefer to sit 'at my desk' to use my computer. That isn't a failure in the prediction of technology, that is a failure in the ability to predict how humans will use it.

2 Portable computers have dramatically become lighter and thinner
Well, they have. Since 1999, portable computers now fit in our pockets and they are thinner than our wallets.

3 Personal computers are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes, and are commonly embedded in clothing and jewelry, like wrist watches, rings, earrings and other body ornaments
Microsoft made a watch phone computer. No one liked it. (partly because of the battery requirements of it, while trying to be a watch). I have seen a desktop computer which can be wall mounted, like a powerpoint. So instead of seeing a computer, u just see all of the plug attachments in your wall. The ipod Nano isn't a computer, but it is almost a necklace and it does perform computer functions. (It is more sophisticated as a computer than most computer in history!) Maybe this is one area that wil be improved in the next 2 years?

4· Computers with a high-resolution visual interface range from rings and pins and credit cards up to the size of a thin book. People typically have at least a dozen computers on and around their bodies, which are networked, using body LANS (local area networks)
Clearly not yet true. Bluetooth has started this though, with people wearing a headphone which communicates with the phone in their pocket. Maybe advancement in the next two years will bring this along, but personally I think this prediction misses the important question: Why would someone want that? Hmm maybe not. there are applications, but the expense is still not covered by the benefit. i think this prediction is early.

6· Most portable computers do not have keyboards
Most computers (maybe not most) are mobile phones.... Microsoft has started releasing that tabletop computer. Maybe by 2009 we will see more and more of those bumptop desktop multi touch interface computers around us.

Rotating memories such as Hard Drives, CD roms, and DVDs are on their way out.
Hmmm, not with bluray coming in. But Flash drives have taken over. The hard drive stil seems firmly entrenched, so this prediction does seem early.

Telephones are primarily wireless and include high resolution moving imagesTelephones are primarily wireless and include high resolution moving images
This one is doing pretty well actually. I know lots of people who opt to not have a landline because they have a good mobile phone contract, and most mobile phones these days can do video calls. In two years it might even be the normal.

The 1999 chat rooms have been replaced with virtual environments.
imvu.com, second life, Massive Multiplayer Online RPG's. this has already happened. Chat rooms are not common at all anymore.

At least half of all transactions are conducted online
I think this one fails on a ccount of trying to predict human behaviour. The technology is there, and there certainly are more and more online transactions, but I doubt it is half.


I'll leave it at those ones.

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#3 Mind

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 06:52 AM

Inventing the technology is not, as you correctly said, the same as having the technology commercially viable, nor does it ensure there is a marketplace for such items.


Word!

I think Kurzweil's predictions of what would be invented, and what trends would be occurring are very accurate. Slow evolving humans, and human culture, have held back the predictions of what would be in use "primarily" or by the "majority".

#4 Ghostrider

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 06:58 AM

Also, the book was written near the height of the .com bubble.

#5 Live Forever

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 08:51 AM

Most of the predictions listed above seem to be coming true. Some of them aren't, but I imagine a few more will catch up by the end of 2009, and he will be batting 90-95% by then. (It already appears that about 60-70% of the above predictions have come true)

#6 advancedatheist

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 02:44 PM

Kurzweil as a mis-predictor has good company.

Back in 1981, FM Esfandiary (FM-2030) predicted that by 2010 (pdf):

Around 2010 the world will be at a new orbit in history. We will translive all over this planet and the solar sphere - at home everywhere. We will be hyperfluid: skim on land - swim in the deep oceans - flash across the sky.

Family will have given way to Universal life. People will linkup/linkout free of kinship and possessiveness.

We will stream ahead propelled by a cornucopia of abundance.

Life expectancy will be indefinite. Disease and disability will nonexist. Death will be rare and accidental - but not permanent. We will continuously jettison our obsolescence and grow younger.

At 2000 plus ten all this will be the norm-hardly considered marvelous.


Yeah, we'll have all that going on in about 2 1/2 years. I guess Bruce will have to shut down ImmInst about 30 months from now, as it will have achieved its purpose.

#7 modelcadet

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 02:47 PM

Also, don't forget, in 1999, we didn't have W.

;)

As I was reading, I was actually also thinking that Kurzweil's predictions are incredibly accurate. Anyway, his point isn't that specific time frames matter (although that ends up being the crux of a lot of his work, as it excites people the most). He's just restating the long known principle of economic growth.

While I too am bummed we don't have those hovercars they promised us so long ago, we have many new cool technologies that are proceeding at an even faster rate than expected (nanotech and quantum computing are kicking serious ass, as is IT). `

#8 Live Forever

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 02:55 PM

What is the old saying? "People tend to be over-optimistic about short-term potential for technology and under-optimistic about long term potential for technology" or something like that...

#9 AdamSummerfield

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 03:58 PM

I agree with many of the predictions of Kurzweil listed, yet I do not believe that the technologies mentioned will have achieved this magnitude of complexity, however, I do believe by 2009 we will be seeing the beginning of most of them.
I also read something interesting recently; If any of you have read about 'memory molecules', you will know that compared with the current method of storing data in bytes is far inferior to this new method for which research is underway. It harnesses isomerism to use each molecule as a byte.
- Sezarus

#10 Liquidus

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 04:10 PM

Aegist: I just noticed your signature. I'm a huge Tool fan myself. I was going to see them in concert in July but decided I'd wait. Great tune as well. I actually have Lateralus playing here at work as I type this ;)

#11 forever freedom

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 04:49 PM

I am glad to see the responses here, they make sense. I haven't thought of it that way, indeed many of the technologies ray states are becoming true, but in some different ways and shapes, which i hadn't recognized. Still, some of the technologies stated like instant language translator or complex virtual environments and some more technologies i'm lazy to mention i haven't seen yet.

And his failure as future predictor is indeed to predict the human behavior and how people will react to new products.

#12 Athanasios

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 05:10 PM

One thing that I find interesting is that people seem to be adapting to the pace at which technology develops. As science advances and tech benefits, people expect more sooner. This makes it seem as 'slow' as always.

This is also happening with cultural changes, IMO.
http://www.imminst.o...&t=17031&hl=&s=

Edited by cnorwood, 26 July 2007 - 07:32 PM.


#13 Aegist

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 01:27 AM

Still, some of the technologies stated like instant language translator or complex virtual environments and some more technologies i'm lazy to mention i haven't seen yet.

I think maybe the real time translator is a little off yet, but I dare say it won't be far off. I'm pretty sure that is something that Ray is actually working on himself. I saw him demonstrate it in one of the talks he gave (maybe TED a couple of years ago, or maybe a more recent talk, not sure which one) where someone spoke out loud, a computer took that speech and converted it into text, that text was translated and the read aloud in german. So the technology to do this is here sort of. I jsut doubt it is as smooth and fluent as would be practical for use. I find bable fish and all of the other online translators to be drastically lacking. I don't think we will actually have a good translator until we have a basic form of AI, because language isn't very rule based, it is very context driven interpretive.

But maybe by 2009 that will happen.

One other thing I was going to mention, is that many of those predictions concern blind and deaf people. Remember than many of rays projects are on this topic, that is what he spends his time inventing: text to speech, speech to text etc programs. So these predictions have more to do with what he expects and 'hopes' to come of his own work i guess. And from our point of view, how many of us are deaf or blind? So how much of our time do we notice innovations in technology to assist deaf and blind people? Maybe this stuff *is* happening already? We just haven't heard anything about it because it doesn't affect us.

#14 PWAIN

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 02:06 AM

And his failure as future predictor is indeed to predict the human behavior and how people will react to new products.


Sam988,

I think you hit the nail on the head here. Ray is piss poor at predicting human behaviour and that is where he goes so wrong. He is a geek and he thinks like a geek - ever wonder why sci-fi books always have such wooden characters and feel so artificial?

A better way to predict is to combine 3 things, a knowledge of technology, a knowledge of human social ways and a knowledge of business and busines practice.

Ray should hae done better in the translation side of things since this is his specialty. 10 Years ago, I used online translation software and the stuff available today is little better. We have had minor incremental improvements at best.

You can affirm just about any prediction if you try hard enough but you just discredit yourself if you do.

Take this:

Around 2010 the world will be at a new orbit in history. We will translive all over this planet and the solar sphere - at home everywhere. We will be hyperfluid: skim on land - swim in the deep oceans - flash across the sky.

*Boats, planes??

Family will have given way to Universal life. People will linkup/linkout free of kinship and possessiveness.

*Divorce and single life becomming the norm

We will stream ahead propelled by a cornucopia of abundance.

*we produce more now and are richer than ever before

Life expectancy will be indefinite. Disease and disability will nonexist. Death will be rare and accidental - but not permanent. We will continuously jettison our obsolescence and grow younger.

*we don't really know for sure if life expectancy is indefinite - especially in the young

At 2000 plus ten all this will be the norm-hardly considered marvelous.

*we are seldom significantly upset by technical progress.


See, even a load of rubbish can be made to look credible with very little effort. Nostradamus was a great one for doing this and his was supposed to be based on spooky power as opposed to extrapolation.

Ray should be embarressed by these predictions and go away and try do a better job next time.

#15 Ghostrider

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 05:45 AM

I am not too worried, most of his predictions concerned technologies or products that are not really essential compared to something like curing aging. I don't care if I am still using CD-ROMs or have a desktop PC instead of a watch PC as long as I am in good health for an indefinite amount of time. Look at how much progress was made against AIDs from the 90s until now. Why? Because people really wanted to cure it. The same can be done for aging and is being done for cancer.

#16 advancedatheist

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 02:57 PM

I am not too worried, most of his predictions concerned technologies or products that are not really essential compared to something like curing aging.  I don't care if I am still using CD-ROMs or have a desktop PC instead of a watch PC as long as I am in good health for an indefinite amount of time.


The progress in gadgets doesn't impress me much, either. You just waste your money on the high-tech version of grave goods.

I suspect Abrahamic theism contributes to the rapid progress we've seen in electronics and IT versus the lack of progress in the conquest of aging and death, despite the amazing tools at our disposal thanks to over 50 years of progress in biology since Watson & Crick. Theists believe that their god created life, but not electronics or computers. Therefore they try to forbid the re-engineering of the human body ("playing god"), while allowing engineers and businesses the freedom to do pretty much whatever they want with electronic circuits, computer chips and software.

Look at how much progress was made against AIDs from the 90s until now.  Why?  Because people really wanted to cure it.  The same can be done for aging and is being done for cancer.


AIDS became a public health priority in the 1980's because the ruling elite worried that it would break of the gay and IV drug using subcultures into the mainstream population. Wall Street stockbrokers, attorneys, bankers and their families can receive potentially HIV-contaminated blood transfusions after accidents or during surgeries just like everyone else; some of them even have gay sex on the side.

#17 Matt

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 03:26 PM

Actually, from reading that list the majority of his predictions, quite a few have come true already, or are very close. What kurzweil didn't do is tell you is how fast society will adopt any particular country, and lets not forget that the west are not always the first to get these things. You'd have to take a look at places like china, japan, south Korea to see the adoption of technology over there too, not just what you see at home.

Edited by Matt, 27 July 2007 - 04:41 PM.


#18 Mind

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 03:54 PM

Ray should be embarressed by these predictions and go away and try do a better job next time.


I think that is a little harsh. Most of his predictions have come true, just a few have not yet enjoyed dramatic "uptake" by society, and there is still 2.5 years left for his first slew of predictions. We'll see what happens.

#19 Matt

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 04:44 PM

I bet, sam, if you were away from 'modern society' for over 10 years, without any technology, then came back to what we have today compared to 1999, you would be amazed by the progress. Things may seem like they're moving along a little slowly, but in actual fact, we're just so used to the technology already, and we're moving with it, so it doesn't seem all that impressive (the speed of progress).

#20 Liquidus

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 04:53 PM

AIDS became a public health priority in the 1980's because the ruling elite worried that it would break of the gay and IV drug using subcultures into the mainstream population. Wall Street stockbrokers, attorneys, bankers and their families can receive potentially HIV-contaminated blood transfusions after accidents or during surgeries just like everyone else; some of them even have gay sex on the side.


It's funny, a lot of people would think this is all made up, and there's no way it can be true, so they in turn ignore it for something more 'moral'.

I've been a law undergrad for nearly 3 years now, and in multiple instances in law texts I have read claims about such things like the banning of LSD because of governmental agendas, and not for legitimate reasons. For example, the reason LSD was banned by the US Government, wasn't because LSD was considered a dangerous substance (which, with any quick point of knowledge, you would know it's less harmful than marijuana smoke), but rather because the massive movement of Chinese/Asian immigrants who were moving to the United States in order to pursue the gold rush. The US Government used LSD (which was used a lot by Chinese immigrants, and then shared with Americans) as a culture/racial clash against Chinese immigrants, creating this stigma of them bringing in illegal drugs to taint the values of American life. Read up on it, you'd be surprised.

I think people are too quick to dismiss claims that provoke thought against the government/organizations doing things with ulterior motives in mind, which isn't really that hard to explain when you consider the sheer influence of special interests.

#21 mike250

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 09:28 PM

personally none of these technological breakthroughs impress me. more money spent on computer chips and fancy gadgets and less breakthroughs in other areas e.g anti-aging medicine, cancer research, various genetic abnormalities etc... a really waste of money. I don't see whats so great about having to change my old PC for a new one every 4 or so years because of some technological breakthroughs.

#22 JohnDoe1234

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 09:55 PM

well, it isn't necessarily advances in consumer devices that are what most singularitiarians are interested in... the increasing speed of processors is a key enabling technology that will make a singularity via AGI possible.

Having to swap out your PC every several years is merely a by-product, and is a good indicator of progress.

#23 DJS

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 10:11 PM

Extrapolating future trends without qualification and/or probability estimates is (A) a total waste of time (B) intellectual flatulence and © borderline cultish.

#24 Aegist

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Posted 28 July 2007 - 01:28 AM

I was looking into a comparison between our advances in the last 25 years vs the advances made 100 years ago and one thing did really strike me: Our current advances do seem to be in the order of improving a good thing. Back then, they were more about creating new good things.

For instance at the turn of the century you saw the implementation of electricity, the electric light bulb, the mass production of cars, and the first powered flight. 4 HUGE improvements.

I guess the advent of the internet is more powerful than it may have ever been envisioned, so that could be compared. And I would say that mobile telecommunications are pretty impressive too...but I just feel like none of it really compares to the invention of electricity, lighting, cars and flight....

#25 Reno

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Posted 31 July 2007 - 06:25 AM

I think the majority of those predictions were shadowed by the author's own belief that the public would blindly accept socially these new innovations. The problem is for a technology product to become main stream it has to first fill a need, second it has to be stylish, and third it has to be affordable.

Personal computers are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes, and are commonly embedded in clothing and jewelry, like wrist watches, rings, earrings and other body ornaments


This is the trap predictions like this fall into. It took cell phones a good 10 to 20 years to become affordable and socially widespread.

Rotating media like CDs and DVDs aren't likely to go out anytime soon, because they are easily damaged and have a limited shelf life. The companies that back these forms of media and their successors realize this and depend on it to turn a profit. This is one of the reason media companies are fighting piracy so much. If people bootleg their favorite show then the monopoly is broken.

VR exists in the forms of MMRPGs online. There are millions of people addicted to these online environments.

It has been said that the governments will never allow real AI and nanotechnology to become mainstream tools in society. To tell you guys the truth I worry about what will happen too when the public acquires these tools. There are just so many unknown variables left to be taken into account. Is humanity really ready to have all its current problems solved and replaced by even more complex and radical ones.

#26 Aegist

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Posted 31 July 2007 - 07:15 AM

I know this thread is started about Rays Book, but just incase people are reading this thread with no knowledge about what Ray claims, they should read this essay:
http://www.kurzweila...tml?printable=1

I think the majority of those predictions were shadowed by the author's own belief that the public would blindly accept socially these new innovations. The problem is for a technology product to become main stream it has to first fill a need, second it has to be stylish, and third it has to be affordable.

The first problem, need, is a grey area. The main arguments against the computer was "why would you want one of those in your home for?" Of course now we can't live without them, butit wasn't apparent in the beginning that there was a 'need', and i think you could have launched a very very succesful argument as to how there is no Need for them at all, but instead we simply find things to do with them..even though none of it is necessary.

The second is a problem which i think of more than just 'stylish'. It is a combination of all factors of acceptance, psychology, marketing, and group mentality. Just remember, platforms were stylish, big hair was stylish, top hats were stylish, and then ripped pants were stylish. It isn't like a style is an absolute concept. So i think this problem is moreso an issue of "Can people be made to want it?"

And the third problem isn't a problem at all, in fact I am certain rays predictions absolute rest on this phenomenon. That is his major point, that technology is advancing so fast, AND it is becoming cheaper incredibly fast. Face it, it was only a FEW YEARS AGO that digital cameras cost tens of thousands of dolalrs, and DVD players would each cost a couple thousand each. now Digital cameras are available for a couple of hundred, and dvd's can be bought for $30.


This is the trap predictions like this fall into. It took cell phones a good 10 to 20 years to become affordable and socially widespread.

And the next technology to be invented will only take 4 - 8 years to become affordable. That is rays point. The whole process is accelerating.
(again, compare the uptake rate of digital cameras, DVD players, LCD monitors and iPods. Each of which were a technology created later than the phone, and each were taken by society significantly faster. Lets see what the next technology will be and see how long that takes)

Rotating media like CDs and DVDs aren't likely to go out anytime soon, because they are easily damaged and have a limited shelf life. The companies that back these forms of media and their successors realize this and depend on it to turn a profit. This is one of the reason media companies are fighting piracy so much. If people bootleg their favorite show then the monopoly is broken.

I disagree. Some company will develop a better technology and they will compete with the DVD companies because they will want a profit. An argument that a company will stop technological advance because they want profit, misses the point that technological advance captures future profit. Innovation is profitable.

#27 Reno

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 04:29 AM

I agree with almost everything you said. The dissecting of the first statement was pretty much just using different phrases to express the same ideas. You pretty much restated what i was attempting to get across. Stylish equals wide social acceptance. If a product doesn't have at least two of the three must haves for product acceptance its going to have a hard time getting off the ground.

Like you said, it took awhile for the personal pc to get off the ground. Companies depend on the consumer demand being high enough that you "must have" the product when it hits the shelves. Some companies are able to generate that buzz and some aren't. The iphone in my opinion is a crummy product, but steve jobs was able to generate the necessary amount of buzz to make it a must have product for apple enthusiast.

We're are also talking about a decade. If the product is invented at the beginning of the decade, it will get bought up, and then mass produced and advertised. If the public thinks it's a must have product it will become widely used in no time flat. If it doesn't become widely used, it will take far longer for it to saturate the market. In the mean time you've used over half your decade just to bring your product to market. If the publics opinion isn't enthusiastic then your fighting an uphill battle.

I disagree. Some company will develop a better technology and they will compete with the DVD companies because they will want a profit. An argument that a company will stop technological advance because they want profit, misses the point that technological advance captures future profit. Innovation is profitable.


Intel is holding back major advances in processor technology. Oil companies have been buying up innovations in energy for half a century. After the model T truck became mass produced and Ford realized that their had to be built in obsolescence the world came a very expensive place. If a chip company sold you the best chip it had produced up to present day. They would have skipped the opportunity to untold amounts of money by selling you earlier designs at a slower pace. If we didn't need oil anymore the oil companies would stop pulling in record profits. At this point the world is built on making money. I guarantee you everything in your kitchen will break down in the next decade. When your refrigerator breaks down take a drive down to your great grandmother's house and take a look at her refrigerator shes had for the last 50 years.

#28 Mind

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 06:53 AM

Intel is holding back major advances in processor technology. Oil companies have been buying up innovations in energy for half a century. After the model T truck became mass produced and Ford realized that their had to be built in obsolescence the world came a very expensive place. If a chip company sold you the best chip it had produced up to present day. They would have skipped the opportunity to untold amounts of money by selling you earlier designs at a slower pace.


If Intel didn't sell top of the line chips, they would have been out of business 30 years ago.

#29 Ghostrider

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 07:13 AM

Intel is holding back major advances in processor technology.


It was not too long ago that a smaller rival really made them look bad for a short period of time. If they had been holding back technology, don't you think they would have quickly unleashed it to prevent their stock price from being cut in half? They are the first company to apply high-k metal gate technology to consumer products with their release of Pendryn later this year. Where they are moving though is low-power mobile applications. Don't you think that they wanted Apple to use their processor in the iPhone? Of course they did, but they did not have a processor for that low-power application.

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#30 Aegist

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 07:40 AM

Understanding the ways of the world really destroys all of those 'Conspiracy' delusions which we are all prone to thinking about occasionally.

Mind and Ghostrider are completely right though, no company is holding anything back. They are all fighting against each other for your dollar. Capitalism works. It is human nature amplified.




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