Retired nightclub performer/computer technician, I now teach hula and ukulele to seniors, and record Hawaiian music for my halau!
Don't miss out on this book. It should start out with "Y'all ain't gonna believe this s _ _ _!"
What a wild and jaw-dropping read! Ray Kurzwell is a real visionary, and the array of subject matter contained in this book is awesome. I can hardly believe his ideas about the future of mankind and artifical intelligence. Though my back aches and my arthritis is killing me, Kurzwell makes me want to live another seventy-one years just to see if what he says turns out to be true. i can only hope that his vision of the future becomes reality so that my great-grandchildren can witness and benefit from the fantastic future outlined in his book.
Kurzwell's views on robotics and artificial intelligence, cloning, reverse-engineering the human brain (?), nanotechnology, world hunger, immortality, conquest of the Universe, treating diabetes successfully (to mention just a few topics) are logically presented, and carefully explained in layman's terms. I have listened to this book several (like seven or eight) times and it has not lost my interest yet. I love the book. I agree with the reviewer who states that it is a great introduction to the 21st century and the vast changes that are iminently possible for mankind. Wow.
The narrator is exactly as he should be. He speaks slowly enough for me to digest the material. His tone is pleasant, and he speaks as if he knows the material well. I am a stickler for narration. it's something that I often comment on, and frankly I was surprised that so many other reviewers panned his performance.
I am a "Life is Awesome! Strive to be Worthy of it." student of life kind of guy. Feeding on Chaos and Empowering the Good. Group Hug!
I have been a subscriber of Popular Science for over 10 years, and listening to this book continued to remind me of articles I had read, the difference being Pop Sci has Pictures and a lot of reference material. I felt like a lot of the material was repeated over again. There was enough material and a few really well done examples and breakdowns of some complicated area's that I enjoyed and may even listen to it again just to find those parts. I don't feel bad about purchasing it, however I was expecting a little more information about singularity, to me it was more about the history of events leading up to the ideas of singularity and a few hypothesizes on the future with possible dates. There is just something missing.
This book comes in three parts, the middle part had more of what I was looking for. The end of the book. It kept my interest.
For this type of book, I think George did great. He has the same way of speaking that you would find a lot of professors do in University. His voice doesn't put me to sleep and it was not annoying like a few other books I have purchased from Audible.
I enjoyed the formulas on how SETI depicts the possibility of ample life in the galaxy and universe.
I paid over 20 bucks for this book, I am not sure that it was worth that. Half that price would have made me feel a little better about the deal. :)
No, I only got through a few hours of this. I love the idea of the Singularity and I have great respect for Kurzweil, but the assertions he is putting forth in this book just seem overstated.
He sounds like a bored professor in a lecture hall. His voice nearly put me to sleep - and this about a topic I find very interesting.
No, I didn't even finish it though.
Chet Yarbrough, an audio book addict, exercises two cocker spaniels twice a day with an Ipod in his pocket and earbuds in his ears. Hope these few reviews seduce the public into a similar obsession but walk safely and be aware of the unaware.
The Singularity is Near bodes the impertinence of Svengali or the prescience of Leonardo da Vinci. Ask a sixty-six year old if he/she would like to be thirty-five again. Ray Kurzweil predicts it will be possible by 2048. However, there is a Faustian bargain to be struck if Kurzweil’s prediction comes true.
Ray Kurzweil’s prediction is based on three beliefs; i.e. one, continued geometric improvement in computer processing power; two, expanded use of nanotechnology with infinite improvement in artificial intelligence; and three, melding of human biology and A. I.’ technology.
The Singularity is Near is well written and a fascinating vision with an optimistic view of the future. Faust declares at the end of Act V: “He who strives on and lives to strive/ Can earn redemption still”. That is the best one can say about Kurzweil’s predictions.
I would definitely recommend this book to a friend who is into futurist type literature. Its a solid read and Kurzweil has a pretty good track record.Its not for everyone - and its so dry, in places, that I would even venture further to say its not for most folks.
The most interesting aspect of this book is the complete unabashed pursuit of his theories. I mean, this guy is unrelenting. He almost has me buying in. Its still too > for me to wrap my head around, but all of the science is there (for the most part anyway)
The least interesting is the long draw-out lambasting of his critics. Really, I stopped caring after the first 5 minutes. Why do you have to do ON and ON showing how much these folks are wrong. A Simple shout out to your haters would suffice. :) We already bought your book and many of us consider you an expert. No reason to waste our time with 2nd grade antics. but maybe that is just me. I dunno.
At first I hated it. Then I was OK with it. Then I found it endearing. but by the end I was SO ready for the book to be over. I am not sure if it was the narrator or the lambasting of critics(see above)
No extreme reactions. but I don't believe that to be the intent.
I almost don't think I recommend this is an Audible book. Not sure yet, though. there were tons of places where seeing the numbers on paper would help. but then again, the way my time goes, I never would have read this book any other way. So there you have it.
This is a fascinating book. It seems so fantastical, but also very plausible, which sounds contradictory but that is what makes the book amazing. No matter what you come away with, Kurzweil is undeniably brilliant.
The reader is unfortunate as he reminds me of a 1960's grammar school film narrator. Very dry. But I do believe it is worth the listen as the material is so good. Some of Kurzweil's humor manages to slip through, which helps.
In my opinion they should redo the reading with someone with more charisma, as the book is an important one.
The book was well researched but crammed full of too many examples. One example or maybe two is fine for the average technical person. The many many additional samples seemed gratuitous. I get bored easily and this one had it's brilliance dimmed by the desire to fill many pages with a fairly simple concept.
Some interesting concepts were overlooked in the space that was used up by the extensive examples.
If man will become god at some point then why is it assumed another species could not already be a god or God? Will there not be a parallel to racism that will inevitably emerge? What other social aspects for good or ill will play out during the years building up to the singularity? What social and political movements will attempt to control mankind's future using that very technology? How many will die from those attempts?
I wish there was more on the dark side of the singularity. It makes sense there are millions more ways to fall off the happy-path than to stay on it.
Even with the things that bugged me it did catch my imagination somewhat. Being a professional hacker I see things from the perspective of the "dark side" of the singularity- I'd love to be wrong.
its a very interesting book with great insight, just needs a better narrator, or crank the speed up if u can
much better, dont get a dry reader to read a technical book
not until i turned the speed up
i listened to this book at 1x speed on my Android app for the first 5 chapters. it was slow and my mind would wander constantly. i amped it up to 3x and it immediately kept me glued to it. i highly recommend everyone do the same
I am a young-executive with a voracious appetite for great stories. I read and listen constantly, and am very proud of my book collection.
Could have been more effective in a 5 hour book. Way too repetitive.
Sorry, as I have giving a negative review but this was not good.
Who is George Wilson and why is he reading this book? He enunciates words likes he is explaining to three-year-olds, but back in the 1950s when boredom was considered a just punishment of the young. I listened to an hour and realized that I had paid attention to maybe 20 minutes of it. CANNOT continue.