November 13, 2012
Ray Kurzweil, the bold futurist and author of the New York Times bestseller The Singularity Is Near, is arguably today’s most influential technological visionary. A pioneering inventor and theorist, he has explored for decades how artificial intelligence can enrich and expand human capabilities.
Now, in his much-anticipated How to Create a Mind, he takes this exploration to the next step: reverse-engineering the brain to understand precisely how it works, then applying that knowledge to create vastly intelligent machines.
Drawing on the most recent neuroscience research, his own research and inventions in artificial intelligence, and compelling thought experiments, he describes his new theory of how the neocortex (the thinking part of the brain) works: as a self-organizing hierarchical system of pattern recognizers. Kurzweil shows how these insights will enable us to greatly extend the powers of our own mind and provides a road map for the creation of super-intelligence – humankind’s most exciting next venture. We are now at the dawn of an era of radical possibilities in which merging with our technology will enable us to effectively address the world’s grand challenges.
How to Create a Mind is certain to be one of the most widely discussed and debated science books in many years – a touchstone for any consideration of the path of human progress.
Ray Kurzweil is one of the world’s leading inventors, thinkers, and futurists, with a thirty-year track record of accurate predictions. Called “the restless genius” by the Wall Street Journal and “the ultimate thinking machine” by Forbes magazine, Kurzweil was selected as one of the top entrepreneurs by Inc. magazine, which described him as the “rightful heir to Thomas Edison.” PBS selected him as one of the “sixteen revolutionaries who made America.”
Kurzweil was the principal inventor of the first CCD flat-bed scanner, the first omni-font optical character recognition, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition.
A recipient of the National Medal of Technology, Kurzweil was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame and holds nineteen honorary doctorates, as well as honors from three U.S. presidents.