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From Ray Kurzweil's "Age of Spiritual Machines"

  • A $1,000 computing device (in 1999 dollars) is now approximately equal to the computational ability of the human brain.
  • Computers are now largely invisible and are embedded everywhere - in walls, tables, chairs, desks, clothing, jewelry, and bodies.
  • Three-dimensional virtual reality displays, embedded in glasses and contact lenses, as well as auditory "lenses," are used routinely as primary interfaces for communication with other persons, computers, the Web, and virtual reality.
  • Most interaction with computing is through gestures and two-way natural-language spoken communication.
  • Nanoengineered machines are beginning to be applied to manufacturing and process-control applications.
  • High-resolution, three-dimensional visual and auditory virtual reality and realistic all-encompassing tactile environments enable people to do virtually anything with anybody, regardless of physical proximity.
  • Paper books or documents are rarely used and most learning is conducted through intelligent, simulated software-based teachers.
  • Blind persons routinely use eyeglass-mounted reading-navigation systems. Deaf persons read what other people are saying through their lens displays. Paraplegic and some quadriplegic persons routinely walk and climb stairs through a combination of computer-controlled nerve stimulation and exoskeletal robotic devices.
  • The vast majority of transactions include a simulated person.
  • Automated driving systems are now installed in most roads.
  • People are beginning to have relationships with automated personalities and use them as companions, teachers, caretakers, and lovers.
  • Virtual artists, with their own reputations, are emerging in all of the arts.
  • There are widespread reports of computers passing the Turing Test, although these tests do not meet the criteria established by knowledgeable observers.


  • The Age of Spiritual Machines, Ray Kurzweil

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