This year's Singularity Summit was held in San Francisco a few days ago, and generated a fair amount of coverage. The event was largely focused on artificial intelligence and other topics not directly related to engineering greater human longevity, but there were nevertheless one or two interesting presentations that touched on related science. Here is a small selection of links for those who didn't manage to make it to the event:
The Singularity Summit is a weird beast. Part science lectures, part networking, part philosophical discussion it comes off as an enthusiastic collection of people who aren’t afraid to think well outside the box. ... [Ben] Goertzel shared his recent collaborations with Genescient using AI to examine the genomes of fruit flies bred for incredible longevity (five times the normal). He thinks AI biologists are the key to understanding human genes and extending human life spans.
The idea over time is to improve people’s thinking about the future and increasing public awareness of radical technologies under development today and of the transformative implications of such technologies as part of a larger process.
Reverse-engineering the human brain so we can simulate it using computers may be just two decades away, says Ray Kurzweil, artificial intelligence expert and author of the best-selling book The Singularity is Near.
I came here pretty skeptical about it. When you look at what has actually been achieved so far on the AI front, it's all pretty primitive. But I can't deny that my skepticism is being, if not assuaged, at least chipped away at and complicated. ... And you talk to a guy who's been breeding fruit flies for longevity for 30 years and studying the changes in their genome and figuring out how we could manipulate the human genome in similar ways ... well, it's good to know somebody's working on that.
You'll find a whole bunch of archived liveblogging from the Summit at the Speculist:
- Singularity Summit 10 Morning
- Singularity Summit 10 Mid-Day
- Singularity Summit 10 Afternoon
- Singularity Summit 10 Evening
- FastForward Radio -- Live from Singularity Summit 2010
- Singularity Summit Day 2 Morning
- Singularity Summit Day 2 Mid-Day
- Singularity Summit Day 2 Afternoon
- Singularity Summit Day 2 Evening
- What Next?
The Singularity Summit was an exciting two days. I had a great time meeting up with old friends and making new ones. I hope I was able to convey a little of the energy and give a glimpse of some of the amazing ideas that were covered.
Now if we could just arrange matters such that the engineered longevity conferences generate this much discussion, light, and noise. This is not a trivial task, of course. Behind the chatter lies a great deal of careful arrangement, networking, and years of groundwork by the Summit organizers - making a splash doesn't just happen. This is something that the longevity science community isn't good at yet, sad to say: it must be added to the list of critical areas to work on.