Technological Advancement and Our Journey Towards The Singularity - Y&TW - English 9 - Sam Gualtieri

Singularity Chart -
Singularity Chart -

​Hi I'm Sam Gualtieri, I'm a freshman at Science Leadership academy and my topic for our You and The World Project is Technological advancement and the singularity. Technology is an incredibly powerful tool. It has become part of our lives, and yet most people don't know what's behind their screens.

The graph shown here represents the rate of advancement in computer technology since 1900 in comparison to human brain power. The rate consistently increases as time goes on. This consistency has lead many to expect that at some point in time not long from now, the line on the graph will be vertical. This point is most commonly known as the technological singularity. Many theories have arisen about the singularity on the graph, but the most popular and likely theory is that this is the point when computers will start building more computers, which will most likely not have an optimal outcome for humans. Scientists and engineers like Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates, and Elon Musk are among these theorists and have all expressed concern about this point in time

Computer technology is already faster and much better at retrieving information than humans are. The only thing preventing that from being a threat is that we command them what to search. But as the way computers process information becomes more and more like that of a human brain, it’s only a matter of time until a chip could be able to become aware of itself. And if that is to happen, it’s motives will be entirely up to it’s choosing. As a human would probably do if they physically could, these computers would likely start improving upon themselves. Faster processing times, faster computers, faster improvement, until robots build even more, even smarter robots in milliseconds. This sounds like pure science fiction, but humankind is alarmingly close to hitting this point. Elon Musk Said in a recent CNN report “AI is much more advanced than people realize, and the pace of progress is much greater that people realize.” He mentioned the dangers of Artificial intelligence “What’s not obvious [to detect] is a huge server bank in a dark vault somewhere with intelligence that’s potentially vastly greater that what a human mind can do.”

However, Artificial intelligence is the ultimate point at the end of a path with multiple dangerous lanes. Much technological improvement is in the name of what’s cool or marketable. Every day a new advancement is made to bring our smartphones closer and closer to us not only in lifestyle, but in physicalness. Places like Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology are working on modifications to access a mini computer through your eye contacts. Let’s cover one thing. That is super neat. And that seems to be the mass consensus amongst smartphone users around the globe. But while microscopic, less silly looking google glass does sound appealing, internet connection that’s attached to your face comes with multiple foreseeable problems. In the age of the internet, most of us know that what we do online is not private. Our search history is tracked by Google. Lot’s of our photos are stored on the cloud or an online drive. Search engines and websites track when and what we do on them. We have a severe lack of privacy online. All this information is being stored online, where a computer could easily reach it. One of the many paths on our journey towards the singularity. In the future of this project, I’m going to be going over future technological advancements, current problematic technologies, and all of their places on the path to the technological singularity. This is something I’ve discussed with my 7th grade English teacher time and time again. I’m fascinated by technological advancement and have been for a long time. Topics that will be covered include lack of privacy, the potential dangers of cellular data radiation, online storage, human workers being replaced with machines, and at the end of the road, Artificial intelligence. If you’re a frequent internet user, all these things affect you or will affect you soon. It's important that you are aware of your place in the world of technology, and how such an integral part of your life could be quite a bit more dangerous than you may have thought.

Annotated Bibliography

Privacy Comic -
Privacy Comic -

Comments (2)

Amal Giknis (Teacher)
Amal Giknis

Nice work putting this together, Sam. It is clearly something you are well-informed about, and I am excited to see you bring awareness to the issue!

Ruby Ginsburg (Student 2020)
Ruby Ginsburg

Sam, I really like your topic choice because it affects everyone. It is obvious that you did a ton of research and that you are very knowledgeable on this subject. I also think the images you chose do a great job of visualizing your writing. Overall, nice job and I'm looking forward to reading your next post!