[ExI] RIP Singularitarianism

Russell Wallace russell.wallace at gmail.com
Wed Jun 20 07:23:05 UTC 2007

I was once a Singularitarian. I will not again go into the factual truths
and falsehoods associated with this belief system (those arguments have been
had many a time and oft), merely note that I once adhered to it as a system.

Why did I change? For factual reasons, by turning around and reexamining my
inventory of beliefs and discarding those that were not supported by
material reality, to be sure.

But also - and to the point - for moral reasons. Singularitarianism was once
a beacon of hope, to which a good man would be proud to subscribe.

What went wrong? Well, it's late in the day. The meme pool is poisoned,
parasite-ridden. Fear and paranoia contaminate it on all sides.

And at the end of the day, what drove me to unsubscribe from the Singularity
list was that the most vocal contributors were and remained in a sphexish
loop that computers will spring out of basements and start devouring human
flesh and conquering the world. Over and over again, I don't mind arguing
against that nonsense once or twice, but when transmission volume is
directly proportional to fear and paranoia even - especially - among those
who claim to be technophiles, who should be forward drivers, when it is so
tireless that one wonders whether the primary contributors live under a
bridge, that they have no purpose in life than transmitting their parasitic
meme complexes... then one must bow out.

We may live, break the bounds of time and space, become the seed for
sentience in this Hubble volume. Or we may die, strangled by our own fear
until real death comes for us. Either way, explicit Singularitarian work is
already dead, cf: SIAI, Novamente. All I can do is get on with my own
(non-Singularity) work.

My point, though, is that there's a gap in meme space: anyone want to coin a
philosophy that means making actual progress, _no_ parasite memes admitted?
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