Originally Posted by The Lone Bolt
The Singularity has been around as a concept for decades. Kurzweil just wrote a book presenting the supporting evidence and predicting when it will occur.
It's based on the Law of Accellerating Returns, which posits that technological advance is increasing as time goes by. An example of this is "Moore's Law" created by Intel founder Gordon Moore in the 1960s. It states that the number of transistors that can fit on a single microprocessor will double every 2 years. Not only has it proven accurate, but, as Kurzweil has pointed out, it has increased to every year.
(Note that this is a logarithmic chart)
So the Singularity is when technological innovation reaches the point of the curve that is almost vertical and advances come so fast they seem instantaneous. After that it's becomes imposible to predict what happens.
The problem is, you have a few people working on something like the Hadron Collider while the overwhelming majority of humans on this planet couldn't tell you how a toaster works.