Jaron Lanier: The Singularity Is A Religion for Geeks

Socrates /

Posted on: May 12, 2011 / Last Modified: December 4, 2021

Today my guest is Jaron Lanier. Jaron lives in Berkeley, California, and, like John Horgan, is one of the better-known critics of both Ray Kurzweil and the technological singularity. Unlike many other critics, however, Lanier is neither a technophobe nor a Luddite. In fact, he is known as the father of virtual reality technology. In addition, Jaron has worked on the interface between computer science and medicine, physics, and neuroscience. Most recently he is the author of a manifesto titled You Are Not a Gadget.

I thought of asking Jaron for an interview right after I watched a couple of YouTube videos where he argues that the Singularity is a new religion for geeks. Though I certainly disagree with this claim of his, I still think that his book is a great read with a lot of sound arguments about the pitfalls of legacy software backed up by several solid examples. Unfortunately, I have to admit that in my opinion, his reasoning during our conversation did not strike me to be as sound as that of his book. This, however, may well be a direct result of my arguably poor questions. Perhaps I somehow failed to lead the conversation in the most productive and constructive manner…

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