Last night I went out to see a movie with a friend (Atonement, highly recommended). Anyway we got to talking about stuff and one of my pet hobbies is freaking people out by saying (what they think) are completely unbelievable things about what the future might hold.
One of my favourite lines is “your great great grand children will probably be a computer simulation“, although I didn’t get that far last night.
However – when I have these conversations I seem to come up against this unbreakable mental block where people can’t conceive how much things could change as technology advances. For example I tell them that they will likely have chips implanted in their head to produce a more natural interface to the digital world.
The general response is that it would lead to some kind of mind control. However I argue that it would be like getting another sense, just like the human eye, and the human ear ultimately send electronic signals into the brain. I could go on that chips in you brain is about as unnatural as human cells assembling calcium to produce bone.
This whole area is fascinating and, I believe inevitable, but like so much social change people don’t really recognise that they are already in the pot and the gas is on.
When I read posts like this on the Singularity Institute blog, I’m reminded how much I am enjoying living in a time where our technology acquisition rate is tending from horizontal to vertical.