A brain in a vat cannot break out: why the singularity must be extended, embedded and embodied

Here is a pre-published version of Francis Heylighen’s paper from JCS

The present paper criticizes Chalmers’s discussion of the Singularity, viewed as the emergence of a superhuman intelligence via the self-amplifying development of artificial intelligence. The situated and embodied view of cognition rejects the notion that intelligence could arise in a closed ‘brain-in-a-vat’ system, because intelligence is rooted in a high-bandwidth, sensory-motor interaction with the outside world. Instead, it is proposed that superhuman intelligence can emerge only in a distributed fashion, in the form of a self-organizing network of humans, computers, and other technologies: the ‘Global Brain’.