In response to:
Why Ray Kurzweil’s theory about how the human mind works is not better than the others, and, ... in fairness, no worse.
Let me start off by saying I'm surprised someone of Kurzweil's caliber doesn't know about the No Free Lunch Theorem and its implications!
Regardless of whether he's a materialist or not, he should know the NFLT proves all AI algorithms are equivalent, and there's nothing special about his particular idea.
If Kurzweil has read Russell and Norvig's "AI: A Modern Approach", which is THE AI textbook (and is written by the director of research at the company where he works!!!) Kurzweil would know all AI is search and representation. The whole point of the NFLT is that it proves there is no one best search algorithm, they are all exactly equivalent over all problem domains. It doesn't matter what philosophy he happens to believe, he could be materialist, substance dualist, Unicornitarian, Gnomist, whatever. The only contribution he can make is to say what what particular problem domain his AI algorithm happens to be good in.
This is not an ideological or philosophical issue. The NFLT is mathematically proven, recognized by all computer scientists, and he should know a fundamental result in his own field of expertise! This is a supposed computer science genius who doesn't know basic graduate computer science!
I can't believe Google hired this charlatan!
At least PZ Myers gets it right for once:
P.Z. Myers calls Kurzweil “one of the greatest hucksters of the age.” Furthermore, Professor Myers has said he’s "completely baffled by Kurzweil's popularity, and in particular the respect he gets in some circles, since his claims simply do not hold up to even casually critical examination."
Clearly Google needs a witch doctor for their religion of transhumanism!
The Singularity, says Professor Myers, is “a New Age spiritualism—that's all it is. Even geeks want to find God somewhere, and Kurzweil provides it for them."
But Google's newly hired director of engineering isn't laughing. He's serious (im)mortally so. "I find death unacceptable," says Mr. Kurzweil. "Natural selection isn't significant anymore. Technological change is the cutting edge of evolution."
As the wise GKC once said:
"When people stop believing in God, they don't believe in nothing — they believe in anything."