There was an interesting article in The Sunday Times last weekend about how human life is evolving. This was an article about what has become known as the “singularity”. This is the time that a computer will be able to think like a human brain. It is estimated that the singularity will become a reality by about 2030 or 2040.
Once this milestone is reached scientists are saying that the content of a human brain will be able to be downloaded onto a computer. The significance of being able to do this cannot be understated. This will effectively mean that we will be able to live forever. After all, when you consider that humans are essentially a brain, with a body to carry it around and once it’s possible for a computer to be a brain then we might not need a body!
All this doesn’t sound like much fun to me but it is said that many scientists are in a race to make sure that they live long enough so that they can take advantage of this huge advance in computer science.
Another interesting suggestion made in the article is that this move towards singularity is how we are meant to evolve as a species. It’s possible, the article says, that aliens haven’t contacted us because their species has not been able to solve the problem of inter-galactic travel and have subsequently died out.
As humans it is also very likely that we won’t be able to solve the same problem to enable us to explore the universe and avoid the natural destructive forces around us. However, it’s also possible that it will be machines and the vast computer power that we are developing that will solve the travel problem and mean we can escape the confines of our small galaxy.
Would I want the content of my brain downloading to a hard drive? As long as there is a secure back-up in case of a hard drive failure I could be tempted !