Michael Chorost‘s new book World Wide Mind:  The Coming Integration of Humanity, Machines, and the Internet is in bookstores as of today.   The 5 minute video below describes his thesis:

The worldwide mind is the combination of humans & the internet acting together in concert.  The combination of the two yields a being which is more powerful than either in isolation.  That, I argue gives you the seed of an intelligence that neither has by its own.

Together with his last book (Rebuilt:  How Becoming Part Computer Made Me More Human), World Wide Mind shares Michael’s own personal story of living with a cochlear impant and how this positive augmentation adds a computational element to his life that in some ways changes who he is.

For more on Michael, see this IFTF Futurecast we did with him in November 2010, or this New York Times review of his work from yesterday.

Additional key points from Michael’s video:

  • worldwide mind is a coming global intelligence (with intentionality and consciousness of its own)
  • the internet by itself is not going to become intelligent
  • using technology with the body, you can make the connection part of your own internal bodily experience.
  • there is a new way to think about how technology & human relationships can be brought together.  Right now people think of these domains as mutually exclusive.  Chorost thinks there is a way to put these togehter with physical integration of humans and machines (as exemplified by his own personal experience of having a cochlear implant)
  • technology can be used to create more humane connections between people


Note:  Also posted on the IFTF blog, FutureNow