Ray Kurzweil: Longevity by 2030
Some people say that we will cease to be human if our machines merge. That is not what it means for us to be humans.
Please answer the following question, Dr. Kurtzweil. Many of your predictions have already come true. I have no doubt that many more will. What would be your top three predictions for the next decade?
One is health and medical care. Our bodies are information, because they’re governed by genes. They are informational processes. We used to not treat them that way. It was a hit-or-miss situation. We would find something. Here’s something to lower blood pressure. Oh, here’s something to kill HIV. We would discover these things by accident, so the progress was linear. Still valuable. In a recent speech, I told 12 and 13-year-old science award winners that you would all be seniors if this progress hadn’t happened because the life expectancy back then was only 19 years. This is about to get into high gear. Genome project was the key to making health and medicine an information technology. This is an exponential growth. We now have software for life, and are making rapid progress in understanding, modeling, simulating, and reprogramming it.
I could go on and on about the examples we use to do this. Now you can fix a broken hearted. It’s not yet romance. That will take some more advancements in virtual reality. But it is a heartattack. In the 1960s, my father suffered a heartattack. There was nothing anyone could do to help him, and he could barely walk. Now I have talked to people who were unable to walk before and they are rejuvenated. Israel is a destination for medical tourists. This is just one of many examples. What is a trickle now will be a flood in ten years. They will be 1,000 times more powerful because their power doubles every year. In 20 years, they’ll be a thousand times more powerful.