Re: poly: Modeling Economic Singularities

From: Peter C. McCluskey <>
Date: Sun May 03 1998 - 22:47:36 PDT (Carl Feynman) writes:
>At 05:37 PM 4/28/98 -0700, Peter McCluskey wrote:
>>Let T2 be the time when the total value of physical goods (measured using
>>prices that prevailed at time T1) produced in the wealthiest countries is
>>100 times what it was at T2.
>This isn't a very good standard,

 Compared to what? Most alternative ways that people have actually used
to describe a singularity are nebulous enough enough that it's hard to
tell whether they are falsifiable.

> because a large increase in the production
>of a product whose price declines very fast could do this, without really
>affecting anything. For example, in 1988 prices, the production of
>computers in 1998 is probably worth a trillion dollars. I wouldn't be
>surprised if there is some biochemical that was first produced in milligram
>quantities in a lab ten years ago for billions of dollars a gram and is now
>churned out by a factory at a rate of a hundred kilograms a year, amounting
>to more than the entire value of the 1988 economy.

 Yes, a perfect description of what I meant would contain something to
limit the effects of large changes in relative quantities of goods.
 And my standard clearly becomes useless when applied to time periods much
longer than a decade.

Peter McCluskey          | Critmail ( | Accept nothing less to archive your mailing list
Received on Mon May 4 05:49:15 1998

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