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




whats new at ieet

IEET Launching Annual Fundraiser

Review of VRLA Expo 2015

The Genetics and Neuroscience of Torture

Support the Progressive Caucus Budget

Transhumanist Party membership open

Children as Chattel–The Common Root of Religious Child Abuse and the Pro-Life Movement


ieet books

Anticipating Tomorrow’s Politics
Author
Ed. David Wood

Post- and Transhumanism: An Introduction
Robert Ranisch and Stefan Lorenz Sorgner eds.

How “God” Works: A Logical Inquiry on Faith
Marshall Brain

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


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Peter Kinnon on 'Today’s Robot Films Reflect Popular Fears Concerning Artificial Intelligence' (Mar 26, 2015)

instamatic on 'Armed with Cameras...' (Mar 25, 2015)

David Brin on 'Armed with Cameras...' (Mar 24, 2015)

David Brin on 'Armed with Cameras...' (Mar 24, 2015)

instamatic on 'Armed with Cameras...' (Mar 24, 2015)

rms on 'Armed with Cameras...' (Mar 24, 2015)

Interesting_Ian on 'God, Immortality and the Futility of Life' (Mar 23, 2015)







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JET

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

Moral Enhancement and Political Realism

Intelligent Technologies and Lost Life

Hottest Articles of the Last Month


IEET Launching Annual Fundraiser
Mar 18, 2015
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The nanobots are coming back
Mar 10, 2015
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The Moral Philosophy of Transhumanism
Mar 1, 2015
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How Iron Age Literacy Spawned Modern Violent Extremism
Feb 26, 2015
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RSS feedETHICAL TECHNOLOGY


IEET Launching Annual Fundraiser

IEET

The IEET just turned ten years old, and we are astonished with what we’ve been able to accomplish in the last decade.

Hundreds of technoprogressive public intellectuals have become a part of our community. Some have been already established writers and thinkers who sought to collaborate on shared issues and values, and others were just learning to write and speak about our issues. Many have gone on to start their own projects, organizations and journals, writing books and producing podcasts and films.

Our conferences have helped advance the case for cognitive libertyanti-aging medicinemoral enhancement,  the rights of non-human persons and the mitigation of catastrophic risks.

Our Journal of Evolution and Technology has published hundreds of peer-reviewed academic articles on topics from human enhancement, to technological unemployment, to artificial intelligence.

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Review of VRLA Expo 2015

Review The Future

In today’s podcast, we review our experiences at the VRLA Expo, a Los Angeles based event that showcases the latest in virtual reality entertainment.  We describe our experiences with a wide variety of Oculus and Gear VR applications and ask the question: what are the most exciting uses for this new medium? Is this just the next generation of 3D gaming? Or are we witnessing the birth of an all new artistic medium with its own yet-to-be-hashed-out strengths and weaknesses? We also recount our impressions of various interface and feedback solutions from companies like Leap Motion, Sub Pac, and Stompz.

Relevant Links

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piero scaruffi

The Genetics and Neuroscience of Torture

by piero scaruffi

Every book on torture that i have browsed is mainly devoted to methods of torture and then to three topics: Ethical arguments against torture, Utilitarian arguments against torture, and History of the rejection of torture. I cannot find a neuroscientist or psychologist who thought of writing about the exact opposite: What were the ethical justifications for torture?, What were the utilitarian arguments for torture? and What is the history of the widespread adoption of torture? 

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Support the Progressive Caucus Budget

The Big Picture RT

In a recent televised conversation, Thom Hartmann and I discussed the Congressional Progressive Caucus’ proposed federal budget. The “People’s Budget” would create 8.8 million new jobs, rebuild our crumbling infrastructure, restore SNAP nutritional assistance funding, end sequestration cuts, restore unemployment benefits, expand Social Security benefits, raise taxes on millionaires (to Clinton-era levels), provide public campaign financing – all while reducing the deficit by more than $4 trillion over ten years.

These measures are fiscally sound. They are also, by and large, popular with Americans across the political spectrum. It is, in fact, a surprisingly reasonable and even moderate document, as its deficit-reduction measures demonstrate. In most other moments in recent history, this would be a mainstream political proposal.

Instead the Republican majority is poised to introduce an extremist budget that is based on fiscal voodoo and is wildly out of touch with public opinion. It would privatize (and cut) Medicare, increase wasteful defense spending, cut taxes for the wealthy, and deprive millions of health insurance.

That budget, or some version of it, will pass the House this week.

 

We can thank the corrupting power of money in politics for that. But that’s why Wednesday’s budget voting is so important. Democrats need to be on record as supporting the CPC’s measures – both to shift the political debate and to provide themselves with a stronger platform to run on in future elections. As of this writing, there is still time to phone your representative and tell them you want them to vote for the Progressive Caucus People’s budget.

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Amon Twyman

Transhumanist Party membership open

by Amon Twyman

The Transhumanist Party is a new political organisation in the UK, part of a network of similar groups around the world, committed to positive social change through technology. Transhumanism is the idea that we must improve ourselves and society using the most effective tools available. To go beyond what we have been, in order to overcome the world’s problems and create a better future.

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Valerie Tarico

Children as Chattel–The Common Root of Religious Child Abuse and the Pro-Life Movement

by Valerie Tarico

On the surface, valuing embryonic life and abusing children are at odds, but with a biblical view of childhood, these positions can go hand in hand. Why do the same people who fight against abortion argue that parents should have the right to beat their children and deny them medical care or education, as some conservative Republicans have done recently?

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Kyle Treman

Autonomy and Anti-Vaccination Advocates

by Kyle Treman

As the measles outbreak grows, 173 cases since March 6th, most cases have been traced from the unvaccinated child in Disneyland, with additional outlier cases and it has become our latest national fascination with a bioethics issue.  

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Maria Ramos

Today’s Robot Films Reflect Popular Fears Concerning Artificial Intelligence

by Maria Ramos

The civilized world has an ever-intensifying relationship to automated computer technology. It is involved in nearly everything we do, every day, from the time we wake to the time we go to sleep. Why, then, does so much of our entertainment reflect a deep-set fear of technology and its potential for failure?

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John G. Messerly

Atheism as Intellectual Snobbery?

by John G. Messerly

Just a few brief remarks about Emma Green’s recent in the Atlantic, “The False Equation of Atheism and Intellectual Sophistication.” Green says: “Theirs [atheists] is a subtle assertion: Believers aren’t educated or thoughtful enough to debunk God, and if they only knew more, rational evidence would surely offset faith.”

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Utibe Effiong

Nigerians will soon have to worry about implanted pacemaker security

by Utibe Effiong

When Reuters announced the successful deployment of the first Internet-enabled pacemaker in the United States, it was a dream come true for many. The news came late in the summer of 2009, three weeks after Carol Kasyjanski became the first American recipient of a wireless pacemaker that allowed her doctor to monitor her health from afar. Since then there has been a proliferation of Internet-connected personal medical devices, or iPMDs, which now include insulin pumps, glucometers, blood pressure cuffs, pulse oximeters, walking canes, and of course, the ubiquitous fitness wearables.

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Tissue Engineering Solutions for Cardiovascular Tissue Pathologies (32min)

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014 Cardiovascular Disease Session 2 (August 21, 2014, 2:30pm)

“Tissue Engineering Solutions for Cardiovascular Tissue Pathologies”
Presenter: James Yoo, Professor, Associate Director and Chief Scientific Officer, Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

Dr. Yoo is a surgeon and researcher. He is currently a Professor, Associate Director and Chief Scientific Officer at the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine. Dr. Yoo’s research efforts have been directed toward the clinical translation of tissue engineering technologies and cell-based therapies. Dr. Yoo’s background in cell biology and medicine has facilitated the transfer of several cell-based technologies from the bench-top to the bedside.

A few notable examples of successful clinical translation include the bladder, urethra, vagina and muscle cell therapy for incontinence. Other technologies that are being developed for translation include therapies for renal, liver and cardiovascular pathologies, skin bioprinting and skin expander for the treatment of burn patients.

Dr. Yoo has served in many institutional, national and international committees and advisory boards. He has successfully organized and directed many scientific meetings and symposia, and managed numerous multi-institutional and international collaborative research projects and programs. He has actively contributed to the scientific community through publication, meeting presentations and lectures internationally.

 

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The Role of Bioprinting in Rejuvenation (25min)

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014
Cardiovascular Disease Session 2 (August 21, 2014, 2:30pm)

“The Role of Bioprinting in Rejuvenation”
Presenter: Gabor Forgacs, Professor, Biophysics Laboratory, Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Missouri-Columbia; Founder, Organovo.

Dr. Gabor Forgacs is a theoretical physicist turned bioengineer turned innovator and entrepreneur. He is the George H. Vineyard Professor of Biological Physics at the University of Missouri-Columbia, the Executive and Scientific Director of the Shipley Center for Innovation at Clarkson University and scientific founder of Organovo, Inc. and Modern Meadow, Inc.

He was trained as a theoretical physicist at the Roland Eotvos University, Budapest, Hungary and the Landau Institute of Theoretical Physics, Moscow, USSR. He also has a degree in biology. His research interests span from topics in theoretical physics to physical mechanisms in early embryonic development.

He is the co-author of the celebrated text in the field, “Biological Physics of the Developing Embryo” (Cambridge University Press, 2005) that discusses the fundamental morphogenetic mechanisms evident in early development. These mechanisms are being applied to building living structures of prescribed shape and functionality using bioprinting, a novel tissue engineering technology he pioneered. He is the author of over 160 peer-reviewed scientific articles and 5 books.

He has been recognized by numerous awards and citations. In particular, he was named as one of the “100 most innovative people in business in 2010” by FastCompany.

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Molecular and Cellular Damage as the Cause of the Diseases of Aging (1:20min)

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014 “Molecular and Cellular Damage as the Cause of the Diseases of Aging Panel” Panel Discussion (August 21, 2014, 10:30am)

This panel discussed the idea that the diseases of aging stem from molecular and cellular damage that accrues with age. Topics of discussion included the types of damage that may be involved, examples of how this applies to one or more diseases, and thoughts on how basic research and industry could use this concept to drive therapeutic target identification and drug treatment/development.

Participants:
• Richard Barker, Director, Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Medical Innovation (Moderator)
• Aubrey de Grey, Co-Founder and Chief Science Officer, SENS Research Foundation
• Caleb Finch, ARCO/Kieschnick Professor of Gerontology and Biological Science and University Professor, USC Davis School of Gerontology
• Jeff Karp, Associate Professor, Harvard Medical School, Co-Director of the Center for Regenerative Therapeutics, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
• Stephen Minger, Chief Scientist, Cellular Sciences, GE Healthcare Life Sciences, UK

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Curing Cancer in the Elderly Through Novel Strategies (31min)

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014 Cancer Session (August 22, 2014, 1:00pm)

“Curing Cancer in the Elderly Through Novel Strategies”
Presenter: Claudia Gravekamp, Associate Professor, Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Claudia Gravekamp, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, and a member of the Albert Einstein Cancer Center. She received her PhD in 1988 in the field of Tumor Immunology at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. From 1987 to 1993, she served as head of the Laboratory for Leptospirosis at the Royal Tropical Institute in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. In 1993, she started as a Research Fellow in Medicine at the Channing Laboratory of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and soon became an Instructor in Medicine until 1998. There, she developed vaccines against Group B Streptococcus and gained expertise in the design and development of gene-driven vaccines. From 1998 to 2006, she was an Associate Member in the Institute for Drug Development of the Cancer Therapy and Research Center and an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center, in San Antonio, where she began to develop a program aimed at genetic vaccines for breast cancer.

From 2006-2008, she was a Scientist at the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute in San Francisco, continuing to develop novel immunotherapeutic approaches to cancer using attenuated Listeria monocytogenes as a platform to deliver anti-cancer agents selectively to the tumor microenvironment at young and old age. She has been funded by grants from the NIH, other grant agencies and private industry since 1999, published 55 scientific articles, is a member of the Editorial Board of Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, and is ad-hoc reviewer for various scientific journals.

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Molecular Elucidation and Engineering of Stem Cell Therapies for the Nervous System

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014 Diabetes Session (August 23, 2014, 12:30pm)

“Molecular Elucidation and Engineering of Stem Cell Therapies for the Nervous System”
Presenter: David Schaffer, Professor, University of California, Berkeley, Director, Berkeley Stem Cell Center.

 

David Schaffer is a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Bioengineering, and Neuroscience at University of California, Berkeley, where he also serves as the Director of the Berkeley Stem Cell Center. He graduated from Stanford University with a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering in 1993. Afterward, he attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology and earned his Ph.D. also in Chemical Engineering in 1998. Finally, he did a postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Fred Gage at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, CA before moving to UC Berkeley in 1999.

At Berkeley, Dr. Schaffer applies engineering principles to enhance stem cell and gene therapy approaches for neuroregeneration, work that includes novel approaches for molecular engineering and evolution of new viral vectors as well as new technologies to investigate and control stem cell fate decisions.

David Schaffer has received an NSF CAREER Award, Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, Whitaker Foundation Young Investigator Award, and was named a Technology Review Top 100 Innovator. He was also awarded the Biomedical Engineering Society Rita Shaffer Young Investigator Award in 2000, the American Chemical Society BIOT Division Young Investigator Award in 2006, and was inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering in 2010.

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Cancer and Aging: Rival Demons? (31min)

SENS Foundation

Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2014 Cancer Session (August 22, 2014, 1:00pm) “Cancer and Aging: Rival Demons?”
Presenter: Judith Campisi, Professor, Buck Institute for Research on Aging.

Judith Campisi received a PhD in Biochemistry from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and postdoctoral training in cell cycle regulation and cancer at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School. As an Assistant Professor at the Boston University Medical School, she began to focus her laboratory on role of cellular senescence in suppressing the development cancer, but soon became convinced that senescent cells also contributed to aging. She left Boston University as an Associate Professor to accept a Senior Scientist position at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in 1991. In 2002, she established a laboratory at the Buck Institute for Age Research, where she is a Professor.

At both institutions, Campisi established a broad program to understand various aspects of aging, with an emphasis on the interface between cancer and aging. Her laboratory made several pioneering discoveries in these areas.

In recognition of the quality of her research and leadership, Campisi received numerous awards, including two MERIT awards from the US National Institute on Aging, awards from the AlliedSignal Corporation, Gerontological Society of America and American Federation for Aging Research, and the Longevity prize from the IPSEN Foundation. She serves on numerous national and international editorial and advisory boards.

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What Will Politics Be Like in the Future?

Alberto Rizzoli

Anticipating Tomorrow’s Politics - By Transpolitica, lead editor: David W. Wood.

An unconditional basic income (also called basic income, basic income guarantee, universal basic income, universal demogrant, or citizen’s income) is a form of social security system[2] in which all citizens or residents of a country regularly receive an unconditional sum of money, either from a government or some other public institution, in addition to any income received from elsewhere.

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Andrew Maynard

No New York Times, wearable computers couldn’t be as harmful as cigarettes!

by Andrew Maynard

I was taken aback- to say the least – by an article from the New York Times that crossed my Twitter feed today that suggested wearable electronics like the new Apple Watch could be has harmful as smoking: Could Wearable Computers Be as Harmful as Cigarettes? http://t.co/JvM1mnR2Tz — NYT Styles (@NYTStyles) March 18, 2015 (Tweet has since been deleted)

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Kevin Carson

Three Tales of the DRM Curtain

by Kevin Carson

These three short stories all come from the same Cory Doctorow collection, Overclocked: Stories of the Future Present (New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press, 2007). Free download here. The three are all set against a background of what I call the “DRM Curtain,” a transnational corporate Empire based on artificial scarcities enforced through a maximalist version “intellectual property” rights, promoted through trade deals written and lobbied by the proprietary content industries, and ultimately backed by the military force of the American state.

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John Danaher

God, Immortality and the Futility of Life

by John Danaher

William Lane Craig has a pretty dispiriting take on the atheistic view of life: If there is no God, then man and the universe are doomed. Like prisoners condemned to death, we await our unavoidable execution. There is no God, and there is no immortality. And what is the consequence of this? It means that life itself is absurd. It means that the life we have is without ultimate significance, value or purpose. (Craig 2008, 72)

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J. Hughes

Transhumanist Position on Human Germline Genetic Modification

by J. Hughes

Recently a group of scientists and an industry group have issued statements calling for a moratorium on human heritable or germline genetic modifications (see here, here and here), now that we have the powerful CRISPR technique to pursue them.  These statements have been greeted rapturously by bioconservatives, who want to see a global ban on germline and enhancement genetic therapies. Of course, transhumanists have been thinking about these things for a long time, and the World Transhumanist Association (now known as Humanity+) adopted a formal position on human germline genetic modification ten years ago.

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Singularity 1 on 1: Expose Yourself to a Diversity of Inputs!

Singularity 1 on 1

This is my second interview with William Hertling. The first time we met was at Greg Bear’s house near Seattle where we did both a 1on1 interview and a fantastic science fiction panel together with our host and Ramez Naam. So I suggest you start by watching those videos if you have not seen them yet because today we are going deeper into topics such as artificial intelligence and the technological singularity.

William Hertling is the author of award-winning novels Avogadro Corp: The Singularity Is Closer Than It AppearsA.I. Apocalypse, The Last Firewall and The Turing Exception. His plausible scenarios for the technological singularity are both emotionally engaging and logically compelling and I have read all four of his books. So it was no surprise that, once again, I had a total blast interviewing Herting for my Singularity 1on1 podcast.

Podcast: Play in new window | Download | Embed

During our 70 min conversation with William we cover: his latest book The Turing Exception; a kill-switch for the internet and other ways to minimize the danger of AI; the impact of reading Our Final Invention; the need for creating AGI/ASI and the democratization of hardware needed to run it; whether it is AI or humanity itself that poses the greatest risk to our existence; science fiction as a social commentary; the importance of ethics; personal development and self-publishing; our chances of surviving the technological singularity…

(You can listen to/download the audio file above or watch the video interview in full. If you want to help me produce more high-quality episodes like this one please make a donation!)

Who is William Hertling?

William Hertling is the author of the award-winning novels Avogadro Corp: The Singularity Is Closer Than It AppearsA.I. Apocalypse, The Last Firewall and The Turing Exception. These near-term science-fiction novels about realistic ways strong AI might emerge have been called “frighteningly plausible,” “tremendous,” “must read.”

Avogadro Corp won Forewords Review Science Fiction Book of the Year and A.I. Apocalypse was nominated for the Prometheus Award for Best Novel. The Last Firewall was endorsed by tech luminaries including Harper Reed (CTO for Obama Campaign), Ben Huh (CEO Cheezburger), and Brad Feld (Foundry Group).

He’s been influenced by writers such as William Gibson, Charles Stross, Cory Doctorow, and Walter Jon Williams.

William Hertling was born in Brooklyn, New York. He grew up a digital native in the early days of bulletin board systems. His first experiences with net culture occurred when he wired seven phone lines into the back of his Apple //e to build an online chat system. He currently resides in Portland, Oregon.

Related Articles:

 

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Daryl Wennemann

Posthumanisms: A Carnapian Experiment

by Daryl Wennemann

In his article, “What is the Difference between Posthumanism and Transhumanism?”, Kevin LaGrandeur sets out to clarify the meaning of the terms “posthuman”, “transhuman” and “posthumanism”. (http://ieet.org/index.php/IEET/more/lagrandeur20141226) He notes that the relative newness of the terminology is a source of confusion among many who employ these terms.

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Utibe Effiong

Top 10 Emerging Tech: an African Perspective. Genetic Engineering, Additive Manufacturing, AI

by Utibe Effiong

What do emerging technologies mean for a developing economy like Nigeria?  This is the second article in a series where I focus on the World Economic Forum’s list of the most promising emerging technologies for the year 2015. Here, I examine the implications of technological breakthroughs such as precise genetic engineering, additive manufacturing, and artificial intelligence, in developing economies such as Nigeria.

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Maria Konovalenko

Transhumanism Strategy Boils Down to Choosing a Crowdfunding Project

by Maria Konovalenko

First of all, let’s draw a line between a strategy and wishful thinking. There are plenty of wonderful transhumanist projects. A viral video, a global portal, attracting celebrities, proof that aging is a disease, convincing billionaires, educational programs, letters to politicians, civil actions, participating in elections, creating a strong community, clinical trials of combinations of existing age delaying drugs on animals, TV shows, Hollywood blockbusters, creating a political committee, conferences on transhumanist topics, scientific megaproject on life extension, cryonics company, crowdfunding, a lot of startups relevant to transhumanist topics, active use of AI elements in all areas and so on .

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Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot Revisted

The Meaning of Life

The astronomer Carl Sagan is one of my intellectual heroes, and one of the great secularists of the twentieth-century. In 1989, after both Voyager spacecraft had passed Neptune and Pluto, Sagan wanted a last picture of Earth from “a hundred thousand times” as far away as the famous shots of Earth taken by the Apollo astronauts. No photo has ever put the human condition in better perspective; it is worth seeing and hearing at least once a year for the rest of one’s life. Thank you Carl Sagan.

The text:

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.


Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space

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Valerie Tarico

How Did Jesus Get to be So Hot? Where Popular Images of Jesus Actually Came From

by Valerie Tarico

Lyrics for the rap song, B.I.B.L.E. (Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth), include the following line: The white image, of Christ, is really Cesare Borgia. The idea that our modern image of Jesus could be based on a ruthless power-hungry illegitimate son of a pope is startling and farfetched. But it is no more bizarre or fanciful than many other ideas about who Jesus was or what he looked like. And it does have an interesting tale behind it. To understand the Borgia story requires a bit of context.

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John Danaher

Should prospective parents have to apply for licences? An Ethical Debate

by John Danaher

Should prospective parents have to apply for parental licences? The argument seems obvious. Having children is a serious business. Negligent or irresponsible parents risk causing long-term harms to their offspring, harms that often have spillover effects on the rest of society. A licensing system should help us to filter out such parents. Therefore, a licensing system would benefit children and society at large. QED

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Andrew Maynard

Solving public health challenges through innovation

by Andrew Maynard

Last Thursday, the second annual University of Michigan Innovation In Action competition concluded, with six stunning student pitches for startups that could make a significant dent on the health and well-being of communities.  It was a great example of what can be achieved at the intersection of public health, entrepreneurship, and the creativity and energy that students can bring to real-world problems.

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Gennady Stolyarov II

James Blish’s ‘At Death’s End’: An Early View of the Prospects for Indefinite Life Extension

by Gennady Stolyarov II

“At Death’s End”, written by James Blish (1921-1975), was published in the May 1954 issue of Astounding Science Fiction magazine. Surprisingly, this short story is still only accessible in hard copy, within the original Astounding Science Fiction edition. Apart from a brief review by Robert W. Franson, who introduced me to this work, there is today surprisingly little literary analysis devoted to “At Death’s End” – even though it offers a fascinating glimpse into how a science-fiction writer from an earlier era perceived the prospects for indefinite human longevity, from the vantage point of the scientific knowledge available at the time.

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Email: director @ ieet.org     phone: 860-297-2376