Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies

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Technoprogressive? BioConservative? Huh?
Quick overview of biopolitical points of view

ieet books

Surviving AI: The promise and peril of artificial intelligence
by Calum Chace

The End of the Beginning: Life, Society and Economy on the Brink of the Singularity
by Ben Goertzel

Humans and Automata A Social Study of Robotics
by Riccardo Campa

The End: What Science and Religion Tell Us about the Apocalypse
by Phil Torres

ieet events

Vita-More @ Alcor Conference
October 9 -11, 2015
Scottsdale, AZ USA

Hughes, Prisco, Goertzel @ Modern Cosmism Conference
October 10 , 2015

Brin on “Privacy: Why Does It Matter?”
October 15 , 2015
Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY USA

Hughes, Brin, Anderson, Pellissier, Sirius, Gillis, Kuzsewski @ Future of Politics
October 18 , 2015
Oakland, California

Sorgner on “Transhumanism, Human Perfection, and the Radical Plurality of Goodness” @ TEDxStuttgart
October 19 , 2015
Stuttgart, Germany

Brin on “Beyond Curing Disease”
October 25 -29, 2015
Indian Wells, CA USA

Brin on “Human Augmentation” @ Innovation Outreach Program
October 26 , 2015
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Brin on “The Future of Virtual Reality”
October 28 , 2015
Seattle, WA USA

Orban, Wood, Pearce @ SIAI Seoul
November 6 -7, 2015
Seoul, South Korea

Sorgner@7th LUMEN international conference
November 12 -14, 2015
Targoviste, Romania

Kevin LaGrandeur @ Conference of the Society of Literature, Science, and the Arts (SLSA)
November 13 -15, 2015
Houston, Texas

Sorgner @ Transhumanism: Perspektiven, Chancen, Risiken
December 5 , 2015
Nürnberg, Germany

ieet news

IEET Audience Divided on Minimum Wage and Technological Unemployment
(Oct 3, 2015)

We asked “Should we promote higher minimum wages even if they accelerate technological unemployment?” Of the 134 of you who responded to our poll, one in six were OK with promoting higher minimum wages because you are skeptical of technological unemployment, and one in four questioned promoting higher minimum wages because you are skeptical of the feasibility of achieving a basic income guarantee. A little more than half of you thought working for higher minimum wages was OK either because a basic income guarantee is inevitable, or because we can simultaneously promote higher minimum wages and a BIG.

Visibility of IEET Jumps This Week
(Oct 3, 2015)

Due to the extraordinary viral popularity of two of our articles this last week, our weekly IEET readership jumped 50% above our highest previous recorded week. The two articles were IEET Advisor Gray Scott‘s concise and compelling “Seven Emerging Technologies That Will Change the World Forever” which exploded Tuesday while the two of us (J. Hughes and Gray Scott) were sitting together at the World Summit on Technological Unemployment. It now has almost 100,000 hits, making us think Gray may be stepping into the shoes of the late and missed Dick Pelletier, who also seemed to have his finger on the pulse of the futurist community. The other article was IEET Assistant Director Marcelo Rinesi‘s “The price of the Internet of Things will be a vague dread of a malicious world” which was praised for it’s eloquence by the blog Boing Boing.

IEET Fellow David Eagleman to host television series on how brain works (Oct 1, 2015)

Brian Hanley Joins IEET Advisory Board; Kris Notaro and Roland Benedikter are new Affiliate Scholars (Sep 28, 2015)


ieet articles

Bitcoin is Steampunk Economics
by Marcelo Rinesi
Oct 7, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

From the point of view of its largest financial backers, the fact that Bitcoin combines 21st century computer science with 17th century political economy isn’t an unfortunate limitation. It’s what they want it for.

Mindfulness-Based Therapy – Does it Work? (Summary, Part 3)
by Gareth John
Oct 7, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

Which brings me to my critique of mindfulness as therapy:

1.  Firstly, mindfulness is not and should not be viewed as the latest cure-all for those with mental health issues. It is not a panacea. By the time the Buddha started employing it within his teachings it had already had a long history of incremental development within a broader spiritual tradition and this continued up until the end of the last century. Within this tradition it is viewed as a powerful tool designed to do to the brain what the brain specifically does not want to do, i.e. remain uninvolved with thought patterns and feelings as they pass before the practitioner.

Mindfulness-Based Therapy – Examining the Studies (Part 2)
by Gareth John
Oct 7, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

So is there any hard evidence that mindfulness-based therapies work? Well, the clinical evidence for mindfulness as a way to prevent depression, stress and anxiety appears at first glance to be sound. A review of the eight-week course was published in 2011 in Clinical Psychology Review by Jacob Piet and Esben Hougaard of Aarhus University, Denmark.

What’s on your Mind? - Mindfulness-Based Therapies and Mental Health (Part 1)
by Gareth John
Oct 7, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Before I begin, full disclosure and some caveats:

* In my youth I trained for thirteen years as a Buddhist priest, first with the Japanese Zen tradition and then within the Tibetan tantric tradition. As such, mindfulness based meditation formed the basis of my practice, even when, later in my training, other methods began to be employed.

Digital Immortality Map: Reconstruction of the Personality Based on its Information Traces
by Alexey Turchin
Oct 6, 2015 • (2) CommentsPermalink

If someone has died it doesn’t mean that you should stop trying to return him to life. There is one clear thing that you should do (after cryonics): collect as much information about the person as possible, as well as store his DNA sample, and hope that future AI will return him to life based on this information.


Reverse Missionaries: Are African Churches Exporting Homophobia to the West?
by Leo Igwe
Oct 6, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

In recent years, the issue of gay rights in Africa has generated intense debate and discussions. Some countries have tried to tighten the laws against homosexuality and prohibit same sex marriage. They claim homosexuality is an evil, corrupt and immoral lifestyle which western societies are trying to impose on African nations.

Scenario 2099: Rewilding, Population Implosion, Artificial Photosynthesis, and - Global Cooling?
by Tsvi Bisk
Oct 5, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

Howard Nathan was reading his hologram news “paper” at breakfast (funny how archaisms survive, he thought— there hadn’t been paper newspapers for well over 50 years). It was December 2099, and the pundits had begun to pontificate about the new century. The headline “Worried Environmentalists” caught his eye; it was an article about the impending manmade Ice Age and the disappearance of the world’s deserts.

Predictive Commercial Technologies Will Alter the Way We Live
by Daniel Faggella
Oct 5, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Not only is artificial intelligence set to take over much of the job market in the coming decades, but it also seems to increasingly make our lives that much more convenient. Seems like a double-edged sword, for better or worse. Perhaps one or the other is not inherently bad or good, but the implications of both – this article focuses on the latter - are worth exploring and discussing.

The Simulated Future
by Gray Scott
Oct 4, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

Are we living in a simulated reality? Are we merely simulated quantum instances inside a holographic substrate? Is the cosmos an advanced computer simulation created by a future technologically mature human civilization?  Who are the original simulators and what are they looking for? Could our reality be the product of a lonely quantum AI machine stranded on the outer edges of our galaxy in the distant future? If we are inside of a simulation, does it even need a creator or could the digital simulation be a naturally emergent phenomena, an infinite fractal, with no beginning and no end. 

A Techno-Optimist Movement: For an Evenly Distributed Future

by B. J. Murphy
Oct 3, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

Prominently known as the “noir prophet” of the cyberpunk subgenre, sci-fi novelist William Ford Gibson once said, “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.”[1]

We are living in a point of time in which we can conceivably recognize the emergence of a future once envisioned throughout science-fiction literature. Unfortunately, as stated by Gibson, the future doesn’t appear to be evenly distributed. Whether or not this is merely the hallmark of a future emerging from its infancy, only to then mature over time, shouldn’t prevent us from recognizing the current problems laid before us.

Technology and Human Dignity
by David Orban
Oct 2, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

The conversation around technological unemployment, which assumes that we will see increasing amounts of social tension due to automation replacing human work in all sectors, hides a more fundamental issue. Technology must be designed and deployed in order to support human dignity, the building of sustainably meaningful lives, and the creation of resilient communities.

Manipulate Much? A Professional Video Editor Discusses Carly Fiorina’s Claims and the Campaign
by Valerie Tarico
Oct 2, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

What did you really see and hear? Don’t be so sure you know the answer.

Garth Spruiell has spent the last thirty years working as a professional video editor, most recently creating promotional content for The Weather Channel and before that tweaking everything from ads to religion to porn for an independent editing shop in Los Angeles. He knows the tricks of the trade: how to grab your attention, heighten emotion, create seamless transitions, or even weave a compelling story from a whole lot of nothing.

Could Artificial Morals and Emotions Make Robots Safer?
by Kevin LaGrandeur
Oct 2, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

This past summer saw the release of the new film “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” Like so many recent movies, the villains in this one were once again killer robots. But the idea of deadly, weaponized robots isn’t just isolated to titillating movie plots. Such machines are already with us, in one form or another, in many places on the globe.

Practicing Discipline in Scientific Endeavor
by Nicole Sallak Anderson
Oct 1, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

In 518 BC, the Greek mathematician, Pythagoras, founded a school in which the topics of mathematics, music and philosophy were studied with great discipline and secrecy. Men and women were welcome to live in community and study together, and eventually this group of individuals would contribute much to the subject of mathematics, including:

The Marxist and Christian Roots of Transhumanism
by Giulio Prisco
Oct 1, 2015 • (2) CommentsPermalink

In an article titled “Transhumanism has never been modern”  Richard Jones argues that “[Transhumanists] have deep roots, perhaps surprising roots… in the views of the early 20th century British scientific left-wing, and in the early Russian ideologues of space exploration.”

Why I still Support Charlie Hebdo
by Russell Blackford
Oct 1, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

You know the shocking story: in January 2015, two masked Islamist gunmen launched a paramilitary attack on the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical weekly magazine. The gunmen murdered twelve people: two police officers and ten of the magazine’s staff, including the much-loved editor and cartoonist Stéphane Charbonnier (known as “Charb”).

In the immediate aftermath, many people expressed solidarity with Charlie Hebdo’s staff and their loved ones, and with the citizens of Paris. There were vigils and rallies in cities across the world. Twitter hashtags proliferated, the most viral being #JeSuisCharlie: “I am Charlie.”

Driverless Cars: the Catalyst Towards Futuristic Smart Cities
by Richard van Hooijdonk
Sep 30, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Have you ever considered how many hours are wasted, traveling to work and back every day? Now picture a scenario where you can work while you are being driven to your destination along the fastest and safest routes – without it costing you anything extra? Wouldn’t that be great? Brace yourself – cities are about to change forever. It’s already happening in the backyards of tech and automobile giants like Google, Audi and Mercedes where driverless cars or self-driven automotive technology is being developed and fine-tuned.

The Natural Evolution of Prosthetic Technology
by Steven Umbrello
Sep 30, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

With the next installment of the hit video game franchise Deus Ex releasing in early 2016, I believe it is an opportune time to talk about prosthetics and the ethics of cosmetic and functional augmentation. To understand the future of prosthetics - if they call that in the future – we must first look at the history of prostheses to better grasp their evolution.



The IEET is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization registered in the State of Connecticut in the United States. Please give as you are able, and help support our work for a brighter future.

ieet multimedia

Neurotechnology Revolution Seminar
Guest image
Jen­nifer Buss

Consciousness is a Mathematical Pattern
Guest image
Max Tegmark

Could new gene therapies help us live for much longer?
Guest image
Brian Hanley

Europeans Are Desperate for Babies
Guest image
Spies Rejser

The Future of Work and Death (Trailer)
(Oct 5, 2015)

Virtual Reality and Reality Augmentation
(Oct 3, 2015)

Envy of the Future
(Oct 2, 2015)


spud100 on 'Digital Immortality Map: Reconstruction of the Personality Based on its Information Traces' (Oct 7, 2015)

johnmesserly on 'Mindfulness-Based Therapy – Does it Work? (Summary, Part 3)' (Oct 7, 2015)

rms on 'Scenario 2099: Rewilding, Population Implosion, Artificial Photosynthesis, and - Global Cooling?' (Oct 7, 2015)

Alexey Turchin on 'Digital Immortality Map: Reconstruction of the Personality Based on its Information Traces' (Oct 6, 2015)

rms on 'A Techno-Optimist Movement: For an Evenly Distributed Future
' (Oct 5, 2015)

CygnusX1 on 'The Simulated Future' (Oct 4, 2015)

Roy Alexander on 'Could Artificial Morals and Emotions Make Robots Safer?' (Oct 4, 2015)


Enframing the Flesh: Heidegger, Transhumanism, and the Body as “Standing Reserve”

Moral Enhancement and Political Realism

Intelligent Technologies and Lost Life

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The IEET is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization registered in the State of Connecticut in the United States.

East Coast Contact: Executive Director, Dr. James J. Hughes,
56 Daleville School Rd., Willington CT 06279 USA 
Email: director @     phone: 860-297-2376

West Coast Contact: Managing Director, Hank Pellissier
425 Moraga Avenue, Piedmont, CA 94611
Email: hank @