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







ieet books

Virtually Human: The Promise—-and the Peril—-of Digital Immortality
Author
by Martine Rothblatt

A Taxonomy and Metaphysics of Mind-Uploading
by Keith Wiley

A History of Life-Extensionism in the Twentieth Century
by Ilia Stambler

Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies
by Nick Bostrom


ieet events

Brin on SETI @ AAPT
January 4 -5, 2015
San Diego, CA USA


Brin @ NASA NIAC Meeting
January 27 -30, 2015
Orlando, FL USA


Brin @ AAAS Annual Meeting
February 12 -16, 2015
San Jose, CA USA


Brain @ North American Basic Income Guarantee Congress
February 26 -1, 2015
New York, NY USA


Wallach, Hughes @ Governance of Emerging Technologies
May 26 -28, 2015
Tempe, AZ USA


Hughes @ Juniata H+ Conference
July 26 -30, 2015
Juniata College, Huntingdon, PA USA


Hughes, Sorgner @ Beyond Humanism Conf: From Humanism to Post- and Transhumanism?
September 15 -18, 2015
Ewha Woman's Univ, Seoul, S. Korea


ieet news

Technoprogressive Declaration - Transvision 2014
(Nov 22, 2014)

Here at the Transvision 2014 in Paris we just concluded a meeting of the technoprogressive caucus to draft a statement of common principles. The meeting consisted of the members of Technoprog!: AFT, Amon Twyman representing Zero State/Institute for Social Futurism, David Wood from the London Futurists, and me (J. Hughes) from IEET. The result is below. We are inviting individual and organizational co-signators. Please let me know if you would like to add your or your organization’s name.  We would like to collect co-signators between now and the end of the year, so you don’t have to decide immediately.

IEET Fellow Stefan Lorenz Sorgner Edits First Ever Comprehensive Intro to Post and Transhumanism
(Oct 3, 2014)

The first ever comprehensive introduction edited by Robert Ranisch and IEET Fellow Stefan Lorenz Sorgner which compares and contrasts posthumanism and transhumanism is forthcoming within the next two weeks.


IEET Fellow Evan Selinger, referenced in New York Times (Sep 17, 2014)

IEET Affiliate Scholar Rick Searle was a 3rd place winner of a $2,000 prize from FQXi (Sep 8, 2014)


ieet articles


Transvision 2014, the Technoprogressive Declaration, & the ISF
by Amon Twyman
Nov 26, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

I have just returned from attending the Transvision 2014 (TV14) conference in Paris, co-hosted by AFT (L’Association Française Transhumaniste) Technoprog!, fiXience, & Traces (ESPCI ParisTech), at the Espace des Sciences Pierre-Gilles de Gennes. I found this to be a particularly successful, interesting, and invigorating conference. The meeting’s theme was “Transhumanism Faces the Social Question”, which is of course a collision of worlds very much at the heart of the Social Futurist worldview.


The Epistemological Objection to Divine Command Theory
by John Danaher
Nov 26, 2014 • (1) CommentsPermalink

Regular readers will know that I have recently been working my through Erik Wielenberg’s fascinating new book Robust Ethics. In the book, Wielenberg defends a robust non-natural, non-theistic, moral realism. According to this view, moral facts exist as part of the basic metaphysical furniture of the universe. They are sui generis, not grounded in or constituted by other types of fact.


The Need for Research of Aging and Aging-related Diseases to Improve Health of the Global Elderly
by Ilia Stambler
Nov 26, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

The Need to Promote Research of Aging and Aging-related Diseases as a Way to Improve Health of the Global Elderly Population.

Resolution of the International Conference on Aging and Disease of the International Society on Aging and Disease - ICAD 2014, November 1-2, 2014, Beijing, China: Aging and the Burden of Disease The degenerative aging processes and associated diseases are the gravest challenge to global public health. Aging-related degenerative processes do not necessarily cause a particular disease but rather combine to produce a large set of non-communicable chronic diseases.


A Stanford University Debate: Transhumanism vs. Anarcho-Primitivism
by Zoltan Istvan
Nov 26, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

At Stanford University, I had the honor of publicly debating the world's leading anarcho-primitivist philosopher John Zerzan. As a transhumanist, I differ from Zerzan on just about every topic. According to Wikipedia, anarcho-primitivism "advocates for a return to a non-'civilized' way of life through deindustrialization." Transhumanism advocates for the continued use of science and technology to improve and change the human species. Simply put, Zerzan encourages everyone to give up civilization and go back to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle. And I encourage everyone to do more to speed up technological and scientific progress. It was a meeting of polar opposite views. The debate headline was: Zoltan vs. Zerzan.


The Legal Challenges of Robotics (2): Are robots exceptional?
by John Danaher
Nov 25, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Will robots pose exceptional challenges for the law? That’s the question taken up in Ryan Calo’s recent article “Robotics and the Lessons of Cyberlaw”. As noted in the previous entry, Calo thinks that robots have three distinguishing features: (i) embodiment (i.e. they are mechanical agents operating in the real world); (ii) emergence (i.e. they don’t simply perform routine operations, but are programmed to acquire and develop new behaviours); and (iii) social meaning (i.e. we anthropomorphise and attach social meaning to them). So when Calo asks whether robots pose exceptional challenges for the legal system, he asks in light of those three distinguishing features.


On “How We Became Post-Human”
by piero scaruffi
Nov 24, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Hayles has written a complex and erudite book on the hidden premises and visible consequences of the information age. Ultimately, her thesis is summarized by a sentence in the prologue: “thought is a much broader cognitive function depending for its specificities on the embodied form enacting it”. Rewritten in plain English, it means that you cannot separate your “i” from the body that you inhabit. Her nightmare is “a culture inhabited by posthumans who regard their bodies as fashion accessories rather than the ground of being”. Her dream is a society in which we “understand ourselves as embodied creatures living within and through embodied worlds and embodied words.”


Bitcoin and Science: DNA is the Original Decentralized System
by Melanie Swan
Nov 24, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

What is the role (if any) of Bitcoin and blockchain technology with regard to the natural world and traditional science? One obvious link is using the blockchain as a means of improving distributed community computing projects with tracking and remuneration. BOINC, whose software runs SETI@home, has introduced Gridcoin, and [Protein]Folding@home has introduced Foldingcoin.


Summa Technologiae, Or Why The Trouble With Science Is Religion
by Rick Searle
Nov 22, 2014 • (28) CommentsPermalink

Before I read Lee Billings’ piece in the fall issue of Nautilus, I had no idea that in addition to being one of the world’s greatest science-fiction writers, Stanislaw Lem had written what became a forgotten book, a tome that was intended to be the overarching text of the technological age his 1966 Summa Technologiae.


Brain, Mind, and the Structure of Reality
by piero scaruffi
Nov 21, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

The US neurophysiologist Paul Nunez previously wrote “Electric Fields of the Brain” (1981) and “Neocortical Dynamics and Human EEG Rhythms” (1995), and in fact his credentials in the field of brain studies harken back to a paper originally written in 1972 and ambitiously titled “The Brain Wave Equation” (an equation that eventually he resurrects in this book, 40 years later). In this book Nunez summarizes his novel ideas on the way that “brains cause minds” (to use Searle’s expression).


How America’s Obsession With Bad Birth Control Hurts and Even Kills Women
by Valerie Tarico
Nov 19, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Many women know more about the risks of birth control than about how the right contraceptive might improve their lives. For busy women, making good health decisions and actually taking care of ourselves can be a challenge, especially when practical factors such as complicated schedules, finances, and competing demands are taken into consideration. Well-balanced, well-presented information can empower women to make smart decisions about reproductive health care. Unfortunately, thanks in part to how the American legal system works, many women know more about the risks and side effects of birth control than about how the right contraceptive might improve their health and well-being.


A decade of uncertainty in nanoscale science and engineering
by Andrew Maynard
Nov 19, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

In 2004, the Royal Society and Royal Academy of Engineering (RS-RAE) in the UK published the report Nanoscience and Nanotechnologies: Opportunities and Uncertainties [1]. At the time it was widely speculated that the report arose from concerns expressed by Prince Charles over the possibility that nanotechnology could lead to a ‘grey goo’ scenario where self-replicating ‘nanobots’ destroy life as we know it [2]. Outlandish as the alleged motivation was (and Prince Charles was quick to downplay reports of his grey goo concerns [3]), the resulting report set the pace for the next decade of global research into the potential impacts of nanotechnology — and how to avoid them.


Longevity Gene Therapy – Updated Projects
by Maria Konovalenko
Nov 19, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

While discussing the longevity gene therapy project we encountered various questions and observations that prompted us to broaden the project and slightly change it. Generally, all the comments can be reduced into 5 main points…


Does Religion Cause More Harm than Good? Brits Say Yes. Here’s Why They May be Right.
by Valerie Tarico
Nov 18, 2014 • (2) CommentsPermalink

Most British people think religion causes more harm than good according to a survey commissioned by the Huffington Post. Surprisingly, even among those who describe themselves as “very religious” 20 percent say that religion is harmful to society. For that we can probably thank the internet, which broadcasts everything from Isis beheadings, to stories about Catholic hospitals denying care to miscarrying women, to lists of wild and weird religious beliefs, to articles about psychological harms from Bible-believing Christianity.


A Transhumanist Manifesto
by Nikola Danaylov
Nov 18, 2014 • (3) CommentsPermalink

Intelligence wants to be free but everywhere it is in chains. It is imprisoned by biology and its inevitable scarcity. Biology mandates not only very limited durability, death and poor memory retention, but also limited speed of communication, transportation, learning, interaction and evolution.


Who Says Ferguson Can’t End Well
by David Swanson
Nov 18, 2014 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Just as a police officer in a heightened state of panic surrounded by the comfort of impunity will shoot an innocent person, the Governor of Missouri has declared a state of emergency preemptively, thus justifying violence in response to something that hasn't happened. Bombing Iraq in response to nonexistent weapons and Libya in response to nonexistent threats worked out so well, we may as well try it domestically, the Governor is perhaps thinking. "There Is No Way That This Ends Well" is a headline I actually just read about Ferguson.


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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. Please give as you are able, and help support our work for a brighter future.

ieet multimedia

“Unequal access to technology: what can we learn from smartphones?” (50min)
Guest image
David Wood

“Demystifying visionary technology” (1hr)
Guest image
Aubrey de Grey

“What is a fair distribution of brains?” (1hr)
Guest image
Anders Sandberg, James Martin Research Fellow

Natasha Vita-More, “Informed Radical Life Extension, by Design” (53min)
(Nov 26, 2014)

Ambition: A Short Sci Fi Film Celebrates the Rosetta Mission (5min)
(Nov 26, 2014)

Longevity Cook Book
(Nov 24, 2014)



comments

Matt Brown on 'The Epistemological Objection to Divine Command Theory' (Nov 28, 2014)

René Milan on 'East Asia is More “Transhumanist” than the USA & Europe' (Nov 28, 2014)

CygnusX1 on 'Can We Avoid a Surveillance State Dystopia?' (Nov 28, 2014)

jhughes on 'Technoprogressive Declaration - Transvision 2014' (Nov 26, 2014)

dangrsmind on 'Technoprogressive Declaration - Transvision 2014' (Nov 26, 2014)

Peter Wicks on 'Summa Technologiae, Or Why The Trouble With Science Is Religion' (Nov 26, 2014)

Giulio Prisco on 'Summa Technologiae, Or Why The Trouble With Science Is Religion' (Nov 26, 2014)

JET

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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