In fact, there was general agreement that minds can exist on nonbiological substrates and that algorithms are of central importance to the existence of minds.
The problem is not simply that the Singularity represents the passing of humankind from center stage, but that it contradicts our most deeply held notions of being.
When I began writing science fiction in the middle '60s, it seemed very easy to find ideas that took decades to percolate into the cultural consciousness; now the lead time seems more like eighteen months.
And for all my rampant technological optimism, sometimes I think I'd be more comfortable if I were regarding these transcendental events from one thousand years remove... instead of twenty.
I have argued above that we cannot prevent the Singularity, that its coming is an inevitable consequence of the humans' natural competitiveness and the possibilities inherent in technology.
Another symptom of progress toward the Singularity: ideas themselves should spread ever faster, and even the most radical will quickly become commonplace.
But every time our ability to access information and to communicate it to others is improved, in some sense we have achieved an increase over natural intelligence.
I am suggesting that we recognize that in network and interface research there is something as profound (and potential wild) as Artificial Intelligence.
Animals can adapt to problems and make inventions, but often no faster than natural selection can do its work - the world acts as its own simulator in the case of natural selection.