Jan 17, 2014

Editor’s Blog Review: Singularity Rising by James D. Miller

Posted by in category: singularity
Peter Rothman - H+ Magazine
Screen Shot 2014-01-15 at 12.03.17 PM James D. Miller’s Singularity Rising is an interesting starter book for proto-transhumanists and will be a must have book for all transhumanists interested in rational and scientific approaches to transhumanism. Along with Singularity Hypotheses and The Transhumanist Reader, Singularity Rising will find a home as part of introductory courses on transhumanist ideas and transhumanism. H+ readers and others familiar with transhumanist and singularitarian scene will recognize the views presented here from publications of the Machine Intelligence Research Institute (MIRI formerly known as the SIAI) and followers of Eliezer Yudkowsky and the LessWrong community.
If you are interested in this ultra-rational approach to transhumanism, Miller provides a concise, cogent, and relatively painless math free introduction to some of the primary ideas. However he can not even scratch the surface of the vast corpus that is available online here in the book format. The book is understandable and easy to read by anyone with a high school education even when it delves into ideas such as mathematical game theory analyses of social dilemmas. I might prefer that many people start with Miller over Kurzweil personally, however if you are a critic of this rationalist school of thought you will find some of this book rough going. And you will not find any surprises here; Miller is a fan of this approach and it shows throughout the book.

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