Source: Newsweek (May 25 issue), original story by Daniel Lyons.

Ray Kurzweil

Ray Kurzweil has given many a speech about how The Singularity - the point when humanity will be surpassed by technology - will actually benefit humanity by allowing them to become cyborgs - and he wants to be one.

Somebody call the Borg. Ray Kurzweil actually wants to be assimilated; To become the man-machine hybrid of sci-fi and cyberpunk lore. He has given speeches about the fabled “Singularity” where machine intelligence supplants human intelligence and the meat is no longer needed… or possibly wanted. But Kurzweil also believes that the Singularity presents an opportunity for humanity to forever alter the course of evolution by merging with machines. He is hopes to be one of the lucky ones to be assimilated, and is currently preparing for the event by dieting and taking supplements to get his biochemistry ready. He expects The Singularity to happen around 2045, when he will be 97. Kurzweil may be cutting it a little close.

Ray Kurzweil’s wildest dream is to be turned into a cyborg—a flesh-and-blood human enhanced with tiny embedded computers, a man-machine hybrid with billions of microscopic nanobots coursing through his bloodstream. And there’s a moment, halfway through a conversation in his office in Wellesley, Mass., when I start to think that Kurzweil’s transformation has already begun. It’s the way he talks—in a flat, robotic monotone.


… and you thought a fossil can piss a creationist off? Ray Kurzweil has is share of detractors who call him a bona fide wingnut:

P. Z. Myers, a biologist at the University of Minnesota, Morris, who has used his blog to poke fun at Kurzweil and other armchair futurists who, according to Myers, rely on junk science and don’t understand basic biology. “I am completely baffled by Kurzweil’s popularity, and in particular the respect he gets in some circles, since his claims simply do not hold up to even casually critical examination,” writes Myers. He says Kurzweil’s Singularity theories are closer to a deluded religious movement than they are to science. “It’s a New Age spiritualism—that’s all it is,” Myers says. “Even geeks want to find God somewhere, and Kurzweil provides it for them.”

Even one of Kurzweil’s colleagues said “Ray is going through the single most public midlife crisis that any male has ever gone through.”

Kurzweil, being the futurist that he is, has made some other out-there predictions that were nowhere near true. But there may be a real deep-seated reason why some are hating The Singularity so intensely:

(Peter) Diamandis says academics who scoff at The Singularity are just threatened because the established order will be disrupted. “These technologies can topple major companies, even governments,” he says. “All these ideas are about empowering the individual.”

Locutus of Borg

Friend or Foe? One major question about The Singularity yet to be answered is: Will the machines even want us around? Ray Kurzweil believes they will, but we will have to wait until 2045 to know for sure.

That’s assuming some ultra-religious dickhead doesn’t make the 2012 “apocalypse” a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This post has been filed under Cyberpunked living by Mr. Roboto.

May 18, 2009


Movie Review By: Mr. Roboto

Year: 2009

Film by: Ben Zasadzki

Key Cast Members:

  • Maya: Kay Teevan, Amanda Bates, Ashley Pontius, Lucia Correira (Voice)
  • Doctors: Kenni Wright, Daniel Nethery
  • Guards: Barrie Connell, Baikal Librian, Alfredo Cardenoas Flores
  • Degree of Cyberpunk Visuals: High

    Correlation to Cyberpunk Themes: High

    Rating: 7 out of 10

    Maya (final Cut) - Funny videos are here

    Synopsis: With Terminator: Salvation coming this Thursday, it’s time I got my review circuits ready by doing a short review of a short movie, Maya. I found this short while searching for cyberpunk music on YouTube. A vid for a song called “Organics (Slowmotion Mix)” by Evil’s Toy had a link to MetaCafe and Maya. Note: The version embedded and reviewed here is the Final Cut version.

    The film starts out with Maya, decked-out in some near-future laser-tag gear, stalking a structure with some guards. She manages to take out one guard, but winds up getting shot dead, only to awaken back in reality… or what we think is reality. From there, we witness Maya “reawakening” with different outcomes, like a dream within a dream. [Obligatory “Yo, Dawg!” goes here]

    While the philosophical use of VR is nothing new, this piece does make the best of its ten minutes of low-budget cyberpunk. It certainly fills a need for a shot of cyberpunk when you need more than a music video but you don’t have the appetite for a feature-length film.



    Here’s the video that lead me to Maya. Lady-bots and gentle-borgs, I give you German EBM band Evil’s Toy with “Organics (Slowmotion Mix).” Enjoy!
    This post has been filed under Amateur Film Production, Internet Find, Internet Short, Man-machine Interface, Cyberpunk movies from 2000 - 2009, Cyberpunk Theme by Mr. Roboto.

    Source: BBC News, UAE University IRML Site.

    Ibn Sina

    Meet Ibn Sina (on the left) on his Facebook page.


    Friend invitation extended to John Connor. Depending on how you feel about robots, this is either a major step forward or a sign of the apocalypse. A month-long experiment is going to be run on Facebook where a robot, complete with a profile, will be used to see if humans are willing to make friends with the machine. The experiment is being run by Nikolaos Mavridis and the United Arab Emirates University’s Interactive Robots and Media Laboratory (IRML), which explains the bot’s name and appearance. Details can be found on the IRML website and a paper is available (PDF) from


    Technical difficulties. Of course, to make friends with Ibn, you need to be registered with Facebook, then find the right Ibn Sina to befriend. I’ve made an attempt to register to see if this is for real, but something is fubar with their registration system. Maybe others are trying to make friends with the robot as well. I’ll keep trying and let you know if it ends well, or if we give birth to Skynet.

    Stay Tuned…

    This post has been filed under Rise of the Robots, Cyberpunked living, News as Cyberpunk by Mr. Roboto.

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