Ray Kurzweil would be an intriguing man to listen to and hear about his accomplishments and has been compared to Thomas Edison by Time Magazine.  In today’s times we take for granted the technological advancements and opportunities we have around us.  Kurzweil invented the first optical character recognition software (OCR).  “OCR transforms the written word into data, the first print-to-speech software for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer and many electronic instruments.”  Furthermore, Kurzweil has two best-selling books, one of which became a movie by the name of The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology.  Over the decades technology has advanced and become a prominent part of every day life.  Kurzweil addresses the human life over time as technologies continue to accelerate and blur the line between human and machine.  Kurzweil is an inventor, a futurist, and a philosopher.  Anyone with these attributes would be a privilege to listen to and learn from.

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6 responses »

  1. bmp007 says:

    Ray Kurzweli seems like an incredible man, one who is using his mind and skills to help those who are disabled. However, I wonder where he stands on current political issues that would be relevant for our lives.

  2. hannahglos says:

    While I believe that Kurzweil is knowledgable in his subject field, I am not sure if he would be as engaging as a speaker as some of the others mentioned so far. As Scout mentioned, he speaks of the line between human and machine, and while that idea is intriguing, it might not draw as much attention as the piracy issues that Kapor and Stallman would be able to speak about. I feel that the other speakers might be able to speak about issues more relatable to us.

    • scoutberger says:

      To be honest I agree with Hannah. While Ray Kurzweil is a brilliant man, I think that Stallman would be a better person to come to Bucknell to speak to us. Kurzweil’s material might not be as stimulating and spark as much discussion as some of the other speakers.

  3. kas054 says:

    I believe that Kurzweil would be a great speaker because he could spark interesting discussions over technology’s potential as well as its unintended consequences. Kurzweil co-founded Singularity University, whose mission is to help the world prepare and take “advantage of exponential change rather than being crushed by it.” I would be intrigued to hear Kurzweil’s recommendations on how to prepare for the future, especially since our generation is becoming increasingly more dependent on technology.

  4. smz006 says:

    Based on reading the blogs about four of the potential speakers, Mr. Kurzweil would not be my top pick. Although the software he has invented has helped mesh technology and other forms of communication such a speech and written work, I feel some of the other speakers would be more exciting. I think Clay Shirky and Arianna Huffington for example are more on the pulse of what is currently happening with technology and society. They interact daily with social media, and I feel would be more insightful about technology and the issues surrounding its use today.

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