Lit 80, Fall 2013


According to Moore’s law the computing power of technology doubles every two years. Considering this, we are quickly approaching the time when the computational ability will be equivalent to human intelligence. With this time approaching, some questions arise. Will this increased ability increase human dependence on technology? If so, will there be a point when our dependence is our downfall? According to works of science fiction, the answer is yes. If this is the case, then we must determine at what point this is predicted to occur. To determine this I looked at science fiction novels and movies and see how the societies of fictional worlds became too dependent and what steps led up humanity’s downfall. Then I considered today’s technology, and how compared it to what is described in science fiction. Finally, I researched what today’s experts on singularity and related schools of thought feel about improvements in technology and how they’ll effect humanity. Taking all of this information, I determine an estimate for when our dependence on technology will betray us. To complement the written work, I have created physical timelines to help visualize what has occurred in science fiction novels. Additionally, I designed a program that provides the reader with a hypothetical situation and then asks the reader to determine what will happen as a result.