Jürgen Schmidhuber is an artificial intelligence researcher who not only walks the walk, he also talks a darn good talk — just witness his recent TEDxLausanne lecture, embedded below, entitled When Creative Machines Overtake Man.
He walks his audience through a wonderful, ideosyncratic version of Kurzweill’s law of exponential returns, laced with some pretty good jokes, concluding with the moment when we humans — who are only progenitors of intelligence, not its ultimate expression — pass the torch to something that is not us.
Selected papers available online:
Philosophers & Futurists, Catch Up! Response to The Singularity [pdf]. Abstract: Responding to Chalmers’ The Singularity (2010), I argue that progress towards self-improving AIs is already substantially beyond what many futurists and philosophers are aware of. Instead of rehashing well-trodden topics of the previous millennium, let us start focusing on relevant new millennium results.
A Computer Scientist’s View of Life, the Universe, and Everything [pdf]: Abstract - Is the universe computable? If so, it may be much cheaper in terms of information requirements to compute all computable universes instead of just ours. I apply basic concepts of Kolmogorov complexity theory to the set of possible universes, and chat about perceived and true randomness, life, generalization, and learning in a given universe.
Formal Theory of Creativity, Fun, and Intrinsic Motivation (1990-2010)[draft][pdf]: Partial Abstract—The simple but general formal theory of fun & intrinsic motivation & creativity (1990-) is based on the concept of maximizing intrinsic reward for the active creation or discovery of novel, surprising patterns allowing for improved prediction or data compression.
An AI is a central character in my novel Luck and Death at the Edge of the World, due out in May 2012. Get details on the Luck & Death Page and download a free, previously published short story on the My Writing Page of my site.