How to Create a Mind: The Secret of discount Human Thought lowest Revealed online sale

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of discount Human Thought lowest Revealed online sale

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of discount Human Thought lowest Revealed online sale

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The bold futurist and bestselling author explores the limitless potential of reverse-engineering the human brain

Ray Kurzweil is arguably today’s most influential—and often controversial—futurist. In How to Create a Mind, Kurzweil presents a provocative exploration of the most important project in human-machine civilization—reverse engineering the brain to understand precisely how it works and using that knowledge to create even more intelligent machines.

Kurzweil discusses how the brain functions, how the mind emerges from the brain, and the implications of vastly increasing the powers of our intelligence in addressing the world’s problems. He thoughtfully examines emotional and moral intelligence and the origins of consciousness and envisions the radical possibilities of our merging with the intelligent technology we are creating.

Certain to be one of the most widely discussed and debated science books of the year, How to Create a Mind is sure to take its place alongside Kurzweil’s previous classics which include Fantastic Voyage: Live Long Enough to Live Forever and The Age of Spiritual Machines.

From Booklist

As inventor, futurist, and noted author of several books on technology, Kurzweil has often pushed the boundaries of convention and stirred controversy with his visionary ideas. Guaranteed to trigger still more debate, his latest work expands on a theme first introduced in his best-seller, The Age of Intelligent Machines (1989); namely, a proposed project to reverse-engineer the human mind and use that information to build superintelligent computers to solve the world’s thorniest problems. Arguing against the prevailing notion that the brain is simply too complex to be replicated in machine form, either in hardware or software, Kurzweil points out how recent, groundbreaking scientific advances, from mapping the human genome to 3D molecular imaging, have resulted in exponential technological growth. On his way to demonstrating the inevitability of computer intelligence that outstrips its human creators, Kurzweil dissects such topics as the nature of consciousness and transcendent abilities like love and creativity, and seeks to rebut his potential critics. While his prose sometimes founders when analyzing abstract data, Kurzweil’s extrapolation of technology’s breathtaking potential remains provocative and inspiring. --Carl Hays

Review

Kurzweil''s vision of our super-enhanced future is completely sane and calmly reasoned, and his book should nicely smooth the path for the earth''s robot overlords, who, it turns out, will be us.
~The New York Times
 
"Kurzweil writes boldly and with a showman’s flair, expertly guiding the lay reader into deep thickets of neuroscience."
~Kate Tuttle, Boston Globe
 
This book is a breath of fresh air.... Kurzweil makes an argument for optimism.
~Laura Spinney, New Scientist
 
"A fascinating exercise in futurology."
~ Kirkus Reviews
 
"It is rare to find a book that offers unique and inspiring content on every page. How to Create a Mind achieves that and more. Ray has a way of tackling seemingly overwhelming challenges with an army of reason, in the end convincing the reader that it is within our reach to create nonbiological intelligence that will soar past our own. This is a visionary work that is also accessible and entertaining.
~Rafael Reif, president, MIT
 
"Kurzweil''s new book on the mind is magnificent, timely, and solidly argued! His best so far!"
~Marvin Minsky, MIT Toshiba Professor of Media Arts and Sciences; cofounder of the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab; widely regarded as "the father of artificial intelligence"
 
"If you ever wondered about how your mind works, read this book. Kurzweil''s insights reveal key secrets underlying human thought and our ability to recreate it. This is an eloquent and thought-provoking work."
~Dean Kamen, physicist; inventor of the first wearable insulin pump, the HomeChoice dialysis machine, and the IBOT mobility system; founder of FIRST; recipient of the National Medal of Technology
 
"One of the eminent AI pioneers, Ray Kurzweil, has created a new book to explain the true nature of intelligence, both biological and nonbiological. The book describes the human brain as a machine that can understand hierarchical concepts ranging from the form of a chair to the nature of humor. His important insights emphasize the key role of learning both in the brain and in AI. He provides a credible road map for achieving the goal of super-human intelligence, which will be necessary to solve the grand challenges of humanity.
~Raj Reddy, founding director, Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University; recipient of the Turing Award from the Association for Computing Machinery
 
"Ray Kurzweil pioneered artificial intelligence systems that could read print in any type style, synthesize speech and music, and understand speech. These were the forerunners of the present revolution in machine learning that is creating intelligent computers that can beat humans in chess, win on Jeopardy!, and drive cars. His new book is a clear and compelling overview of the progress, especially in learning, that is enabling this revolution in the technologies of intelligence. It also offers important insights into a future in which we will begin solving what I believe is the greatest problem in science and technology today: the problem of how the brain works and of how it generates intelligence."
~Tomaso Poggio, Eugene McDermott Professor, MIT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences; director, MIT Center for Biological and Computational Learning; former chair, MIT McGovern Institute for Brain Research; one of the most cited neuroscientists in the world

"This book is a Rosetta stone for the mystery of human thought. Even more remarkably, it is a blueprint for creating artificial consciousness that is as persuasive and emotional as our own. Kurzweil deals with the subject of consciousness better than anyone from Blackmore to Dennett. His persuasive thought experiment is of Einstein quality: It forces recognition of the truth."
~Martine Rothblatt, chairman and CEO, United Therapeutics; creator of Sirius XM Satellite Radio

"Kurzweil''s book is a shining example of his prodigious ability to synthesize ideas from disparate domains and explain them to readers in simple, elegant language. Just as Chanute''s Progress in Flying Machines ushered in the era of aviation over a century ago, this book is the harbinger of the coming revolution in artificial intelligence that will fulfill Kurzweil''s own prophecies about it."
~Dileep George, AI scientist; pioneer of hierarchical models of the neocortex; cofounder of Numenta and Vicarious Systems

"Ray Kurzweil''s understanding of the brain and artificial intelligence will dramatically impact every aspect of our lives, every industry on Earth, and how we think about our future. If you care about any of these, read this book!"
~Peter H. Diamandis, chairman and CEO, X PRIZE; executive chairman, Singularity University; author of the New York Times bestseller Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think
 

About the Author

Ray Kurzweil is the author of The New York Times bestseller The Singularity Is Near and the national bestseller The Age of Spiritual Machines, among others. One of the leading inventors of our time, he was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2002. He is the recipient of many honors, including the National Medal of Technology, the nation’s highest honor in technology. He lives in Boston.

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John Walker
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Understanding the brain as a hierarchical structure of pattern recognizers
Reviewed in the United States on January 17, 2020
We have heard so much about the exponential growth of computing power available at constant cost that we sometimes overlook the fact that this is just one of a number of exponentially compounding technologies which are changing our world at an ever-accelerating pace. Many... See more
We have heard so much about the exponential growth of computing power available at constant cost that we sometimes overlook the fact that this is just one of a number of exponentially compounding technologies which are changing our world at an ever-accelerating pace. Many of these technologies are interrelated: for example, the availability of very fast computers and large storage has contributed to increasingly making biology and medicine information sciences in the era of genomics and proteomics—the cost of sequencing a human genome, since the completion of the Human Genome Project, has fallen faster than the increase of computer power.

Among these seemingly inexorably rising curves have been the spatial and temporal resolution of the tools we use to image and understand the structure of the brain. So rapid has been the progress that most of the detailed understanding of the brain dates from the last decade, and new discoveries are arriving at such a rate that the author had to make substantial revisions to the manuscript of this book upon several occasions after it was already submitted for publication.

The focus here is primarily upon the neocortex, a part of the brain which exists only in mammals and is identified with “higher level thinking”: learning from experience, logic, planning, and, in humans, language and abstract reasoning. The older brain, which mammals share with other species, is discussed in chapter 5, but in mammals it is difficult to separate entirely from the neocortex, because the latter has “infiltrated” the old brain, wiring itself into its sensory and action components, allowing the neocortex to process information and override responses which are automatic in creatures such as reptiles.

Not long ago, it was thought that the brain was a soup of neurons connected in an intricately tangled manner, whose function could not be understood without comprehending the quadrillion connections in the neocortex alone, each with its own weight to promote or inhibit the firing of a neuron. Now, however, it appears, based upon improved technology for observing the structure and operation of the brain, that the fundamental unit in the brain is not the neuron, but a module of around 100 neurons which acts as a pattern recogniser. The internal structure of these modules seems to be wired up from directions from the genome, but the weights of the interconnections within the module are adjusted as the module is trained based upon the inputs presented to it. The individual pattern recognition modules are wired both to pass information on matches to higher level modules, and predictions back down to lower level recognisers. For example, if you''ve seen the letters “appl” and the next and final letter of the word is a smudge, you''ll have no trouble figuring out what the word is. (I''m not suggesting the brain works literally like this, just using this as an example to illustrate hierarchical pattern recognition.)

Another important discovery is that the architecture of these pattern recogniser modules is pretty much the same regardless of where they appear in the neocortex, or what function they perform. In a normal brain, there are distinct portions of the neocortex associated with functions such as speech, vision, complex motion sequencing, etc., and yet the physical structure of these regions is nearly identical: only the weights of the connections within the modules and the dyamically-adapted wiring among them differs. This explains how patients recovering from brain damage can re-purpose one part of the neocortex to take over (within limits) for the portion lost.

Further, the neocortex is not the rat''s nest of random connections we recently thought it to be, but is instead hierarchically structured with a topologically three dimensional “bus” of pre-wired interconnections which can be used to make long-distance links between regions.

Now, where this begins to get very interesting is when we contemplate building machines with the capabilities of the human brain. While emulating something at the level of neurons might seem impossibly daunting, if you instead assume the building block of the neocortex is on the order of 300 million more or less identical pattern recognisers wired together at a high level in a regular hierarchical manner, this is something we might be able to think about doing, especially since the brain works almost entirely in parallel, and one thing we''ve gotten really good at in the last half century is making lots and lots of tiny identical things. The implication of this is that as we continue to delve deeper into the structure of the brain and computing power continues to grow exponentially, there will come a point in the foreseeable future where emulating an entire human neocortex becomes feasible. This will permit building a machine with human-level intelligence without translating the mechanisms of the brain into those comparable to conventional computer programming. The author predicts “this will first take place in 2029 and become routine in the 2030s.”

Assuming the present exponential growth curves continue (and I see no technological reason to believe they will not), the 2020s are going to be a very interesting decade. Just as few people imagined five years ago that self-driving cars were possible, while today most major auto manufacturers have projects underway to bring them to market in the near future, in the 2020s we will see the emergence of computational power which is sufficient to “brute force” many problems which were previously considered intractable. Just as search engines and free encyclopedias have augmented our biological minds, allowing us to answer questions which, a decade ago, would have taken days in the library if we even bothered at all, the 300 million pattern recognisers in our biological brains are on the threshold of having access to billions more in the cloud, trained by interactions with billions of humans and, perhaps eventually, many more artificial intelligences. I am not talking here about implanting direct data links into the brain or uploading human brains to other computational substrates although both of these may happen in time. Instead, imagine just being able to ask a question in natural language and get an answer to it based upon a deep understanding of all of human knowledge. If you think this is crazy, reflect upon how exponential growth works or imagine travelling back in time and giving a demo of Google or Wolfram Alpha to yourself in 1990.

Ray Kurzweil, after pioneering inventions in music synthesis, optical character recognition, text to speech conversion, and speech recognition, is now a director of engineering at Google.
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ImageMD
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Beyond Human Information Processing
Reviewed in the United States on January 11, 2018
The first half of Kurzweil''s book summarizes what is known about information processing by the human brain. He details how the neocortex recognizes patterns and stores information hierarchically, producing memory, consciousness and identity. He relates this to modern... See more
The first half of Kurzweil''s book summarizes what is known about information processing by the human brain. He details how the neocortex recognizes patterns and stores information hierarchically, producing memory, consciousness and identity. He relates this to modern digital computers in terms of process and speed. After a brief look at hidden Markov chains, he arrives at his favorite topic, LOAR, the law of accelerating returns which leads him to sharing his thoughts about singularities.The victory by WATSON on the TV quiz show, ''Jeopardy'', appears frequently in this story.
Kurzweil''s successful experience with natural language processing software gives him considerable credibility and authority in this attempt to predict computer breakthroughs during the coming decades. Ray Kurzweil is one of the foremost AI geniuses of our times and you probably should read one of his books.
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Steven H Propp
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
WILL COMPUTERS EVER BE ACCEPTED AS “CONSCIOUS”? KURZWEIL THINKS SO
Reviewed in the United States on August 22, 2020
Raymond Kurzweil (born 1948) is a best-selling author, futurist, and a director of engineering for Google. He wrote in the Introduction to this 2012 book, “The primary idea in my three previous books on technology (‘The Age of Intelligent Machines’… ‘The Age of Spiritual... See more
Raymond Kurzweil (born 1948) is a best-selling author, futurist, and a director of engineering for Google. He wrote in the Introduction to this 2012 book, “The primary idea in my three previous books on technology (‘The Age of Intelligent Machines’… ‘The Age of Spiritual Machines’… and ‘The Singularity Is Near’…) is that an evolutionary process inherently accelerates … and that its products grow exponentially in complexity and capability. I call this phenomenon the law of accelerating returns (LOAR), and it pertains to both biological and technological evolution. The most dramatic example of the LOAR is the remarkably predictable exponential growth in the capacity and price/performance of information technologies.” (Pg. 2)

He continues, “There is now a grand project [the ‘Blue Brain Project’] under way involving many thousands of scientists and engineers working to understand the best example we have of an intelligent process: the human brain. It is arguably the most important effort in the history of the human-machine civilization. In ‘The Singularity Is Near’ I made the case that … other intelligent species are likely not to exist… if they existed we would have noticed them, given the relatively brief time that elapses between a civilization’s possessing crude technology … to its possessing technology that can transcend its own planet. From this perspective, reverse-engineering the human brain may be regarded as the most important project in the universe. The goal of the project is to understand precisely how the human brain works, and then to use these revealed methods to better understand ourselves, to fix the brain when needed, and… to create even more intelligent machines…” (Pg. 3)

He goes on, “In this book I present a thesis I call the pattern recognition theory of mind (PRTM), which, I argue, describes the basic algorithm of the neocortex (the region of the brain responsible for perception, memory, and critical thinking)… I describe how recent neuro-science research, as well as our own thought experiments, leads to the inescapable conclusion that this method is used consistently across the neocortex. The implication of the PRTM combined with the LOAR is that we will be able to engineer these principles to vastly extend the powers of our own intelligence.” (Pg. 3-4) Later, he adds, “My goal in this book is definitely not … attesting to how complex the brain is, but rather to impress you with the power of its simplicity. I will do so by describing how a basic ingenious mechanism for recognizing, remembering, and predicting a pattern… accounts for the great diversity of our thinking.” (Pg. 9)

He outlines the theory: “there are no images, videos, or sound recordings stored in the brain. Our memories are stored as sequences of patterns. Memories that are not accessed dim over time… We can recognize a pattern even if only part of it is perceived (seen, heard, felt) and even if it contains alterations. Our recognition ability is apparently able to detect invariant features of a pattern---characteristics that survive real-world variations… Thus our conscious experience of our perceptions is actually changed by our interpretations… This implies that we are constantly predicting the future and hypothesizing what we will experience. This expectation influences what we actually perceive… The lists of steps in my mind are organized in hierarchies…this list is not stored as one long list of thousands of steps---rather, each of our routine procedures is remembered as an elaborate hierarchy of nested activities. The same type of hierarchy is involved in our ability to recognize objects and situations.” (Pg. 29-33)

He notes, “Learning is critical to human intelligence. If we were to perfectly model an simulate the human neocortex (as the Blue Brain Project is attempting to do) and all of the other brain regions that it requires to function… it would not be able to do very much---in the same way that a newborn infant cannot do much (other than to be cute, which is definitely a key survival adaptation). Learning and recognition take place simultaneously.” (Pg. 63)

He suggests, “We have two modes of thinking. One is nondirected thinking, in which thoughts trigger one another in a nonlogical way… the triggers that led [a] thought to pop into our mind may or may not be evident… Even if we do remember it, it will be a nonlinear and circuitous sequence of associations. The second mode of thinking is directed thinking, which we use when we attempt to solve a problem of formulate an organized response…our subsequent thoughts and actions will depend on assessments made as we go through the process. Moreover, each such directed thought will trigger hierarchies of undirected thoughts… Our actual mental experience is complex and messy, made up of these lightning storms of triggered patterns, which change about a hundred times a second.” (Pg. 68-69)

He explains, “The basic algorithm of the neocortical pattern recognition modules is equivalent across the neocortex from ‘low-level’ modules, which deal with the most basic sensory patterns, to ‘high-level’ modules, which deal with the most basic sensory patterns, to ‘high-level’ modules, which recognize the most abstract concepts… Signals go up and down the conceptual hierarchy. A signal going up means, ‘I’ve detected a pattern.’ A signal going down means, ‘I’m expecting your pattern to occur,’ and is essentially a prediction… There is a great deal of redundancy in the patterns we learn, especially the important ones. The recognition of patterns … uses the same mechanism as our memories, which are just patterns we have learned. They are also stored as sequences of patterns… I maintain that the model I have presented is the only possible model that satisfies all of the constraints that the research and our thought experiments have established.” (Pg. 90-92)

He states, “From an evolutionary perspective, love itself exists to meet the needs of the neocortex. If we didn’t have a neocortex, then lust would be quite sufficient to guarantee reproduction. The ecstatic instigation of love leads to attachment and mature love, and results in a lasting bond. This in turn is designed to provide at least the possibility of a stable environment for children while their own neocortices undergo the critical learning needed to become responsible and capable adults.” (Pg. 119)

He observes, “It the Blue Brain Project brain is to ‘speak and have an intelligence and behave very much as a human does’ … then it will need to have sufficient content in its simulated neocortex to perform these tasks… there is a lot of learning that must be achieved before this is feasible. There are two obvious ways this can be done in a simulated brain such as Blue Brain. One would be to have the brain learn this content in the way a human brain does… The other approach is to take one or more biological human brains that have already gained sufficient knowledge to converse in meaningful language and to otherwise behave in a mature manner and copy their neocortical patterns into the simulated brain. The problem with this method is that it requires … scanning technology of sufficient spatial and temporal resolution and speed to perform such a task quickly and completely. I would not expect such an ‘uploading’ technology to be available until around the 2040s.” (Pg. 127)

He asks, “How do we set the many parameters that control a pattern recognition system’s functioning? … We call these parameters ‘God parameters’ because they are set prior to the self-organizing method of determining the topology of the hidden … models… This is perhaps a misnomer, given that these initial DNA-based design details are determined by biological evolution, though some may see the hand of God in that process (and … I do consider evolution to be a spiritual process…)[later, he explains that “My religious upbringing was in a Unitarian church”; pg. 222]… When it same to setting these ‘God parameters’ in our simulated hierarchical learning and recognizing system, we again took a cue from nature and decided to evolve them… using a simulation of evolution. We used what are called genetic or evolutionary algorithms… which include simulated sexual reproduction and mutations.” (Pg. 147)

He summarizes, “It is my view that self-organizing methods such as I articulated in the pattern recognition theory of mind are needed to understand the elaborate and often ambiguous hierarchies we encounter in real-world phenomena, including human language An ideal combination for a robustly intelligent system would be to combine hierarchical intelligence based on the PRTM … with precise codification of scientific knowledge and data. That essentially describes a human with a computer. We will enhance both poles of intelligence in the years ahead.” (Pg. 172)

He outlines, “Let’s use the observations I have discussed… to begin building a brain. We will start by building a pattern recognizer… Our digital brain will also accommodate substantial redundancy of each pattern, especially the ones that occur frequently… A very important consideration is the education of a brain, whether a biological or a software one…. I would also provide a critical thinking module, which would perform a continual background scan of all the existing patterns… I would also provide a module that identifies open questions in every discipline… We should provide a means of stepping through multiple lists simultaneously to provide the equivalent of structured thought… We will also want to enhance our artificial brains with the kind of intelligence that computers have always excelled in, which is the ability to master vast databases accurately and implement known algorithms quickly and efficiently… Finally, our new brain needs a purpose… a series of goals… we could give our new brain a more ambitious goal, such as contributing to a better world. A goal along these lines … raises a lot of questions: Better for whom? … For biological humans? For al conscious beings? If that is the case, who or what is conscious? As nonbiological brains become as capable as biological ones of effecting changes in the world… we will need to consider their moral education. A good place to start would be with … the golden rule.” (Pg. 172-178)

He asserts, “The issue of whether or not the computer and the human brain are at some level equivalent remains controversial today… The question… is whether or not we can find an algorithm that would turn a computer into an entity that is equivalent to a human brain. A computer, after all, can run any algorithm that we might define … The human brain, on the other hand, is running a specific set of algorithms. Its methods are clever in that it allows for significant plasticity and the restructuring of its own connections based on its experience, but these functions can be emulated in software.” (Pg. 181-182)

He muses, “The key issue for providing the requisite hardware to successfully model a human brain… is the overall memory and computational throughput required. We do not need to directly copy the brain’s architecture which would be a very inefficient and inflexible approach.” (Pg. 195)

He concludes, “my position is that I will accept nonbiological entities that are fully convincing in their emotional reactions to be conscious persons, and my prediction is that the consensus in society will accept them as well. Note that this definition extends beyond entities that can pass the Turing test… The latter are sufficiently humanlike that I would include them, and I believe that most of society will as well, but I also include entities that evidence humanlike emotional reactions but may not be able to pass the Turing test---for example, young children.” (Pg. 213) Later, he adds, “I agree that contemporary examples of technology are not yet worthy of our respect as conscious beings. My prediction is that they will become indistinguishable from biological humans… and will therefore share in the spiritual value we ascribe to consciousness… We should probably adopt a different terminology for these entities, as they will be a different sort of machine.” (Pg. 223)

He admits, “Although I share Descartes’ confidence that I am conscious, I’m not so sure about free will… Nonetheless I will continue to act as if I have free will and to believe in it, so long as I don’t have to explain why.” (Pg. 240)

Once we are able to create a ‘scan-and-instantiate’ version of our self, he states, “there are now two of you… What I believe will actually happen is that we will continue on the path of the gradual replacement and augmentation scenario until ultimately most of our thinking will be in the cloud. My leap of faith on identity is that identity is preserved through continuity of the pattern of information that makes us us… biological substrates are wonderful… but we are creating a more capable and durable substrate for very good reasons.” (Pg. 245)

For me, this book’s subtitle (which may have been added by the publisher, not Kurzweil, we should acknowledge), “The Secret of Human Thought Revealed,” is inaccurate. His model for how thinking occurs is modeled more on how computers “think” than on, say, neurophysiology. Nonetheless, this book (as all of Kurzweil’s books) is provocative and challenging, and will be “must reading” for anyone seriously studying artificial intelligence, human consciousness, and related topics.
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Derek
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
There''s a point in here somewhere...
Reviewed in the United States on August 29, 2015
A fascinating idea mired in a circuitous narrative. Kinda like having to sort through a hundred boxes of cereal for a single prize that you have to put together yourself. Perfectly fine for people with time on their hands and a fireplace to sit next to on a wintry evening.... See more
A fascinating idea mired in a circuitous narrative. Kinda like having to sort through a hundred boxes of cereal for a single prize that you have to put together yourself. Perfectly fine for people with time on their hands and a fireplace to sit next to on a wintry evening. But I found myself highly impatient as I leafed through page after page looking for his point. I will always buy Ray''s books. Make no mistake. He just needs an editor who knows how to sift the chaff. And Ray, if you are reading this, do let the editor do his/her job. Don''t get precious about concepts. We''re all pretty smart around here. Just make a point and move on.
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Lisa
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Count me a baptised Kurzweilian
Reviewed in the United States on August 22, 2015
Wonderful read, very clear. Kurzweil has achieved confidence and articulation since earlier books, which were fantastic but a bit scattered and self-exploring. This was solid thought-provocation right in the kisser, especially his "everything is hierarchical... See more
Wonderful read, very clear. Kurzweil has achieved confidence and articulation since earlier books, which were fantastic but a bit scattered and self-exploring. This was solid thought-provocation right in the kisser, especially his "everything is hierarchical patterns" grand unification theory. This stuff will change ya!

Some find his work overly optimistic / simplistic, thinking that reduces his credibility. Nay, the guy has very real acumen - OCR, Dragon Speak, now Google. His is applied science, implementing his hypotheses directly - the proof is in the pudding. Other criticisms are that this book doesn''t illuminate AI implementation ("the title makes grand claims"). Well for that you''ll need a text book friends, paperback won''t cut it. This book is "Start here. History, core theories, inspiration, grand unification". If you''re inspired, make "Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach" your next read.
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Chappy
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Interesting journey into the brain and technology as we know it.
Reviewed in the United States on November 13, 2017
In this boom Ray puts together how his knowledge of how the brain works helped in developing his technology a lot of us use daily. He deep dives into research done, as well as the why''s of how things work. It is interesting to see the predictions he has made and his reason... See more
In this boom Ray puts together how his knowledge of how the brain works helped in developing his technology a lot of us use daily. He deep dives into research done, as well as the why''s of how things work. It is interesting to see the predictions he has made and his reason as to why they came true. He is a very smart man and the book for me was a good read. Although at some points I didn''t fully understand what was being explained the majority of the book was so interesting it was hard for me to put down.
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AM First Reviews
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Put me to sleep every time
Reviewed in the United States on May 8, 2020
I can honestly say that I tried reading this book on 4 different times if not 5 and each time it put me to sleep. The best part of the book is the anecdotes at the start of the chapter. Some people are just not meant to write, yet every Tom, Dick and Harry seems to want to... See more
I can honestly say that I tried reading this book on 4 different times if not 5 and each time it put me to sleep. The best part of the book is the anecdotes at the start of the chapter. Some people are just not meant to write, yet every Tom, Dick and Harry seems to want to publish a book these days.

I blame the publishers in part for just putting "crap" out there willy nilly just for a buck or two.
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v_nieddu
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Interesting book that connects with Artificial Intelligence
Reviewed in the United States on October 6, 2019
How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed is a fascinating book tying in how the human mind works and artificial intelligence. Kurzweil deconstructs parts of the mind specifically how the mind stores memories in sequential order, and ties in how it relates... See more
How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed is a fascinating book tying in how the human mind works and artificial intelligence. Kurzweil deconstructs parts of the mind specifically how the mind stores memories in sequential order, and ties in how it relates to the kinds of artificial intelligence we have today like Siri and Alexa. He talks a lot about the Neocortex, an important part of the brain that is responsible for large patterns of information, as opposed to short-term thinking. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, however it is a little difficult to understand, not being too familiar in the science of the human brain. Another criticism of this books is the title is a little misleading, thinking that the book is mainly about how the human mind works, however Kurzweil only really talks about the Neocortex and how it is relatable to the artificial intelligence in existence today. Given those criticisms I definitely enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend.
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Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Self indulgent, unimaginative, and unoriginal
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 29, 2019
Throughout the book, Kurzweil switches between asserting very general, accepted ideas which have been the consensus in such domains as neuroscience (while hinting that they are his own thinking), and confidently asserting very general, speculative and unsubstantiated ideas,...See more
Throughout the book, Kurzweil switches between asserting very general, accepted ideas which have been the consensus in such domains as neuroscience (while hinting that they are his own thinking), and confidently asserting very general, speculative and unsubstantiated ideas, then attaching a fancy name to them. His PRTM (pattern recognition theory of mind - sigh), is based on the idea that the algorithm used by the neocortex in processing is uniform across the entire structure. He provides no evidence for this besides some silly calculations about the informational content of the genome. This is an area about which very little is known but the fact that the cellular structure of cortex varies in a way that is visible to the human eye really should be enough to give him pause. Worse still is that his "ideas" are almost exactly the same as those of Jeff Hawkins (just presented in a more arrogant way). A very disappointing read, please don''t waste your time with it.
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Judyta Szacillo
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Beautiful visions, rather unrealistic
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 27, 2017
Compared to “Surviving AI” by Colum Chase, which was the first book I’ve read on the subject, this is a very challenging read. I confess I skipped many pages, unable to follow the specialist lingo and associated equations. Nevertheless, I did manage to gain some – though...See more
Compared to “Surviving AI” by Colum Chase, which was the first book I’ve read on the subject, this is a very challenging read. I confess I skipped many pages, unable to follow the specialist lingo and associated equations. Nevertheless, I did manage to gain some – though very shallow – understanding of what those Silicon Valley dreamers are up to. Ray Kurzweil certainly is a dreamer. He ponders the questions of consciousness, free will, and identity, in order to convince us that, whatever shape or form AI takes when it arrives, it is not going to be fundamentally different from what we are now – just smarter, more efficient, and more durable. He seems to be fully convinced that it will be in a kind of symbiosis with us, or an extension of us, and that it is our destiny to infuse the whole universe with our post-biological human intelligence. I was very glad to see those dreams written down by someone else, someone who actually can and does pursue them actively. I share that dream, but I don’t have as much confidence in it. Probably that’s why Kurzweil devoted his life to it, and I’m just a sceptical observer!
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J. V. H. Urbina
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Meh!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 2, 2019
Ray Kurzweil has a massive ego, and when he''s not talking about himself or his asserted predictions or the companies he''s founded he might speak about something interesting about neuroscience or AI. All in all, this book has some interesting ideas and some that sound absurd...See more
Ray Kurzweil has a massive ego, and when he''s not talking about himself or his asserted predictions or the companies he''s founded he might speak about something interesting about neuroscience or AI. All in all, this book has some interesting ideas and some that sound absurd (e.g. chapter 9).
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George Powell
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Very interesting book, doesn''t give enough away
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 20, 2013
This book was given the title it has to sell more copies. Kurzweil doesn''t reveal any secrets and doesn''t describe any methods that haven''t been around for a long time in academia and industry already. As a software engineer working on pattern recognition systems I bought...See more
This book was given the title it has to sell more copies. Kurzweil doesn''t reveal any secrets and doesn''t describe any methods that haven''t been around for a long time in academia and industry already. As a software engineer working on pattern recognition systems I bought this book as soon as it was available, the book gave me a lot of ideas and I''m very happy I bought it. The central thesis seems to be the same as Jeff Hawkins'' On Intelligence - obviously a big influence for Kurzweil - but with a focus on developments since On Intelligence was published. Kurzweil got employed at Google very shortly after publishing this book so he could lead a team to create the mind that he''s described. He''s said in interviews that he left some details out of the book because he didn''t want to give too much away. Overall a good read that will provoke a lot of constructive thought, but don''t expect for anyone to actually build a mind based on just this book.
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Jennifer Hicks
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Readable if you really want to get to grips with the subject
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 16, 2019
A very readable account of an optimistic view of the future. You may need to skim over some of the more abstruse bits.
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