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Ray Kurzweil Joins Google As Director of Engineering 148

dgharmon points out news at CNET and on Ray Kurzweil's own site that Kurzweil will join Google as Director of Engineering. Specifically, "he will be joining Google to work on new projects involving machine learning and language processing," which sounds to me like another way to say "quickening the singularity."
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Ray Kurzweil Joins Google As Director of Engineering

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  • Re:SkyNet (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jeremiah Cornelius ( 137 ) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @10:52AM (#42301141) Homepage Journal

    I had a better summary in my submission. ;-)

    Kurzweil is famous for his breakthroughs in OCR, computer speech synthesis and digital music creation â" as well as his theory of âoeThe Singularity,â that point when technology is sufficiently advanced that it contests and surpasses human intelligence."

    "I'm thrilled to be teaming up with Google to work on some of the hardest problems in computer science so we can turn the next decade's 'unrealistic' visions into reality." said Kurzweil.

    Peter Norvig, Google's director of research, said "We appreciate his ambitious, long-term thinking, and we think his approach to problem-solving will be incredibly valuable to projects we're working on at Google."

    Hal 9000 was unavailable for comment, as were Colossus, Guardian and Dr. Charles A. Forbin.

  • by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @12:06PM (#42301511)

    Some of his views are very debatable, but he is still a reasonably accomplished engineer. He may not be bringing about the revolution he wants, but he should be able to recognise good directions to spend resources to achieve more immediate goals. I know that Google has been very interested in machine learning applied to language translation - just the sort of field Kurzweil should have some familiarity with. It'll even satisfy his ambition to change the world - bring down the language barriers, and you've just made a significent step towards world peace. It's much harder to justify a war when the populations of both sides are in constant communication and have established social relationships over the internet.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kurzweilfreak ( 829276 ) <kurzweilfreak@gC ... l.com minus city> on Saturday December 15, 2012 @02:19PM (#42302337) Journal

    Kurzweil's impression that superhuman intelligence will automagically arise from raw computing power is thoroughly laughable.

    Thank you for showing us just how little you understand about what the man has actually said.

  • Re:SkyNet (Score:3, Insightful)

    by stenvar ( 2789879 ) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @02:27PM (#42302403)

    So I gather you don't know either what technologies he actually invented.

  • Re:SkyNet (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MikeBabcock ( 65886 ) <mtb-slashdot@mikebabcock.ca> on Saturday December 15, 2012 @04:01PM (#42303003) Homepage Journal

    To be fair, having a long-term visionary on staff is just as important as having good engineers.

"You must have an IQ of at least half a million." -- Popeye