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




whats new at ieet

Innovation Ecosystems in Emerging Economies

A Viral New World Disorder

Combatting Ebola: Moving beyond the hype

Procedural Due Process and the Dangers of Predictive Analytics

The Future of Robotic Automated Labor

Consciousness and Neuroscience


ieet books

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

A Taxonomy and Metaphysics of Mind-Uploading
Keith Wiley

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

Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies
Nick Bostrom


comments

Kris Notaro on 'A Viral New World Disorder' (Oct 25, 2014)

Kris Notaro on 'The Future of Robotic Automated Labor' (Oct 25, 2014)

instamatic on 'Why “Why Transhumanism Won’t Work” Won’t Work' (Oct 24, 2014)

Abolitionist on 'Is using nano silver to treat Ebola misguided?' (Oct 24, 2014)

cacarr on 'Book review: Nick Bostrom's "Superintelligence"' (Oct 24, 2014)

jasoncstone on 'Ray Kurzweil, Google's Director Of Engineering, Wants To Bring The Dead Back To Life' (Oct 22, 2014)

pacificmaelstrom on 'Why “Why Transhumanism Won’t Work” Won’t Work' (Oct 21, 2014)







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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


Google’s Cold Betrayal of the Internet
Oct 10, 2014
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Should we abolish work?
Oct 3, 2014
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The Future As History
Oct 12, 2014
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Transhumanism and Politics
Oct 7, 2014
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RSS feedETHICAL TECHNOLOGY


Innovation Ecosystems in Emerging Economies

World Economic Forum

Dr. Addy brings to SEED a distinguished professional career marked by innovation and entrepreneurship in corporate and start-up environments spanning multiple sectors. He founded and has served as chief executive of Plebys International LLC, a California-based enterprise development company targeting underserved markets worldwide. Until 2009 Dr. Addy was also president and CEO of WaterHealth International, Inc, a Plebys venture with a mission to develop and provide systems and services for delivering affordable potable water to rural and urban communities in developing economies. Prior to Plebys, Tralance was International Vice President at Johnson & Johnson, as well as Worldwide President of a market-leading global subsidiary that he co-founded, and Vice President of R&D for Johnson & Johnson Medical, Inc.

He earned BA and BS degrees in chemistry and engineering from Swarthmore College, and MS and PhD degrees in engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Tralance is a Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering. He has served on many business and civic boards, including the Board of Managers of Swarthmore College and the Advisory Board of the Center for Sustainable Enterprise at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina.

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Harry J. Bentham

A Viral New World Disorder

by Harry J. Bentham

As we continue the collective journey into the unexplored territory of the Twenty-First Century, nation-state after nation-state is crumbling under the contagion of popular dissatisfaction at their arbitrary and unjust claims to power. Unable to contain the crisis, every nation-state now seems to live under the specter of imminent possible crisis and collapse. No-one is immune.

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Andrew Maynard

Combatting Ebola: Moving beyond the hype

by Andrew Maynard

As of October 19, over 9,000 cases of Ebola had been reported, with close to 5,000 deaths, almost exclusively in West Africa.  And while there have been success stories such as the elimination of Ebola infections from Nigeria and Senegal, the numbers of cases in vulnerable economies continues to grow.

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John Danaher

Procedural Due Process and the Dangers of Predictive Analytics

by John Danaher

I am really looking forward to Frank Pasquale’s new book The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms that Control Money and Information. The book looks to examine and critique the ways in which big data is being used to analyse, predict and control our behaviour. Unfortunately, it is not out until January 2015. In the meantime, I’m trying to distract myself with some of Pasquale’s previously published material.

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The Future of Robotic Automated Labor

World Economic Forum

Zexiang Li, Professor of Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the School of Engineering and who is the Director of Automation Technology Center at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, talks about the future of automated labor.

​​

 Automation Technology Cooperative Research Center

  • Abstract
  • We propose to establish a university/industry cooperative research centre to develop automation technologies for electronic manufacturing. The mission of the Centre is:
    • to develop critical automation technologies needed for electronic manufacturing and demonstrate the technologies in prototype products.
    • to transfer the technology know-how to local industries,
    • to provide in-depth training to local technical staff and engineers in the areas of automation technologies.
  • In recent years, Hong Kong's electronics industry has been faced with serious challenges. First, the international market demands high product diversity, rapid product introduction, high product quality and low price.
  • Second, the electronics industry had to cope constantly with the problems of rising labor and land costs and high turnover of technical staff, problems that have subsequently caused low assembly yield and poor product quality (See Roadmap for Electronics Packaging and Assembly for Hong Kong, produced by the Hong Kong Electronic Industries Association). In response, many electronics firms have become increasingly interested in adopting state-of-the-art automation technologies for their manufacturing operations. But this effort is hindered by several major roadblocks including:

    • lack of technology know-how;
    • shortage of experienced engineers and technical staff capable of designing and maintaining modern manufacturing operations; and
    • lack of local manufacturers of high-end equipment.
  • By combining the vast technical expertise and other resources of the University and the important product development experience of the industry, the proposed Centre can help overcome these difficulties. First, an Industry Advisory Board (IAB) will be formed with members from all participating companies of the Centre. Engineers from the member companies will be actively involved in deciding new projects. Second, projects will be initiated to develop core technologies for manufacturing automation. These technologies will be demonstrated in the form of semi-product (or "product-like") prototypes. Member companies will be kept informed on the status of these projects and will be provided with full access to these technologies. Finally, seminars, workshops and demonstrations will be organized on a regular basis to disseminate these technologies quickly to member companies. By using these technologies, which are already in semi-product form, member companies can develop their full product prototypes at a substantially reduced cost, cycle-time and engineering complexity. 

http://webhost1.ust.hk/~atcwiki/cgi-bin/zxliwiki/index.php?title=Homepage

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Consciousness and Neuroscience

World Economic Forum

Professor in Cognitive Neuroscience (Aarhus University) Morten Overgaard talks about “Consciousness and Neuroscience” at the World Economic Forum, Published on Oct 24, 2014.

​​

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Fusion: “Posthuman” - 3D Printed Tissues and Seeing Through Walls!

#thisisfusion

In “Posthuman,” we ask some of the most important names in science to help us peer through and envision what the world of tomorrow looks like. From the ability to see through walls and heal ourselves with robotic immune systems, to the use of 3D printers to generate replacement organs, “Posthuman” encapsulates a buffer zone between what is here today, and what is just around the corner.

In our first segment, we spoke to Ali Khademhosseini, associate professor at Harvard-MIT, at the 2014 Blavatnik Awards. Khademhosseini is pioneering the push to develop 3D printed tissues and organs. His team was among the first to successfully 3D-print blood vessels.


In this second installment of Posthuman we spoke to Caltech’s Ali Hajimiri about THZ imaging systems, which can cater in the superhuman ability to see through walls and capture the most minute movements.


It’s applications can revolutionize many facets of our day-to-day life, from airport security to biomedical, it can even drastically improve entertainment systems like XBox Kinect by allowing gaming consoles to spot the slightest movements down to pinpoint accuracy.

Ali Hajimiri’s is a pioneer in the field of photonics and silicon-based systems. His team at Cal Tech’s High-Speed Integrated Circuits (CHIC) is paving the way in Optical Phased Array technonologies and self-healing computer circuits. He was nominated for the 2014 Blavatnik Award for his advancements in the field.

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Evan Selinger

Philosopher Michael Lynch Says Privacy Violations Are An Affront To Human Dignity

by Evan Selinger

Michael Lynch, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, was the latest guest-speaker in my Technology, Privacy, and Law class. I asked Lynch to appear so that he could explain why he argues, in places like his amicus curiae brief for ACLU v. Clapper and articles in The New York Times, that some privacy violations are so harmful they’re an “affront to human dignity.” Students, of course, are free to accept or reject this this view. Either way, it’s complex.

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Tery Spataro

Transhumanism: The Robot Human: A Self-Generating Ecosystem

by Tery Spataro

I will attempt to take the fear out of the future, by giving Transhumanism a digestible definition, while at the same time offering a cautionary note. As an educator, technologist and ethicist, I feel I have a social obligation to provide a rationale for understanding Transhumanism for those people who have questions about our natural evolution and for younger generations who are embracing technology but want to know there is a brighter future.

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Eric Schulke

Indefinite Life Extension and Broader World Health Collaborations (Part II)

by Eric Schulke

Review of Health Advocacy in the Post-2015 Millennium Development Goals This review addresses research and advocacy collaboration potential pertaining to the World Health Organization, indefinite life extension and related groups. I begin by explaining how supporters of a generally healthy society and groups interested in world development relate and don’t relate to longevity extension. I then examine papers that are more oriented toward longevity extension. I conclude by reviewing papers that are most closely aligned with the goal. I note that, though we in the movement for indefinite life extension support many of these groups and their positions, none of them go quite far enough.

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Eric Schulke

Indefinite Life Extension and Broader World Health Collaborations (Part I)

by Eric Schulke

Review of Health Advocacy in the Post-2015 Millennium Development Goals This review addresses research and advocacy collaboration potential pertaining to the World Health Organization, indefinite life extension and related groups. I begin by explaining how supporters of a generally healthy society and groups interested in world development relate and don’t relate to longevity extension. I then examine papers that are more oriented toward longevity extension. I conclude by reviewing papers that are most closely aligned with the goal. I note that, though we in the movement for indefinite life extension support many of these groups and their positions, none of them go quite far enough.

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B. J. Murphy

The Transhumanist Future of Sex (Crimes?)

by B. J. Murphy

On August 31 of this year, nearly 200 celebrities had their private images hacked and released for the entire world to see. These images ranged from the normal day-to-day activities, to their utmost private moments – from nudity to sex. This event hit both mainstream and social media airwaves, flooding the online sphere under the hashtags #Celebgate and the #Fappening.

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Is The Ebola Crisis (in the US) As Severe As The Media is Making It Out To Be?

BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO

IEET Advisor and Trustee, Arthur Caplan, talks on Boston Public Radio about the ins and outs of the abola crisis, and what risk really means. 

 

​Please click here if the above audio does not play in your browser.

  • Art Caplan, fresh from WHO conference in Geneva on Ebola, updated us on preparedness and checked in with about the "ignorance is bliss" approach many people are taking about medical ailments. Then we talk to you to see if you believe knowledge is power when it comes to your heath, or if you'd prefer to be kept in the dark.
  • Juliette Kayyem on John Adams' The Death of Klinghoffer, the importance of having an 'Ebola Czar,' and how Rascal Flatts fits into the picture. [53:10]
  • Brian McGrory checks in with us about Jim and Margery's governor's debate, as well as the one Chuck Todd moderated between Scott Brown and Jeanne Shaheen. [1:20:05]
  • Heather Goldstone joined us to discuss the complex (but not untenable) relationship between religion and science. [1:44:40]
  • Sue O'Connell drops by to talk about her decision to home school her middle schooler, then we ask you what you think about homeschooling. [2:05:10]


Arthur L. Caplan, Ph.D., is the Drs. William F and Virginia Connolly Mitty Professor and head of the Division of Bioethics at New York University Langone Medical Center in New York City. Dr. Caplan is the author or editor of 29 books and over 500 papers in refereed journals. His most recent books are Smart Mice Not So Smart People (Rowman Littlefield, 2006) and the Penn Guide to Bioethics (Springer, 2009). Dr. Caplan writes a regular column on bioethics for MSNBC.com and is a frequent guest and commentator on various media outlets.

 

He has served on a number of national and international committees including as the chair of the National Cancer Institute Biobanking Ethics Working Group, the chair of the Advisory Committee to the United Nations on Human Cloning, the chair of the Advisory Committee to the Department of Health and Human Services on Blood Safety and Availability, a member of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Gulf War Illnesses, the special advisory committee to the International Olympic Committee on genetics and gene therapy, the ethics committee of the American Society of Gene Therapy, chair of the advisory committee on bioethics for GlaxoSmithKline, and the special advisory panel to the National Institutes of Mental Health on human experimentation on vulnerable subjects. He is currently the co-director of the Joint Council of Europe/United Nations Study on Trafficking in Organs and Body Parts. He is a member of the board of directors of The Keystone Center, Tengion, the National Center for Policy Research on Women and Families, Octagon, Iron Disorders Foundation, and the National Disease Research Interchange. He is also on the board of visitors of the Columbia University School of Nursing.

 

 

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Richard Eskow

5 Reasons Why Democrats Should Push Social Security Expansion – Now

by Richard Eskow

In two weeks voters will go to the polls in a race that looks increasingly dire for Democrats. It’s not that voters agree with Republicans on the issues. On the contrary, polls show that a majority of voters across the political spectrum agree with core Democratic principles and programs.

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Five Things Worth Knowing About Ebola

University of Michigan: Risk Science Center

There’s something rather human about being scared of the ebola virus.  It’s a “bogeyman” virus – the stuff of nightmares; hovering in the shadows of our imagination like a half-glimpsed specter.  Like most imagined horrors though, the reality of ebola is much more mundane.

The latest episode of Risk Bites takes a look at five things worth knowing about ebola that help demystify the virus:

 

Useful links to additional information:

Updated 10/23/14, 11:03 AM

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Valerie Tarico

Birth Control? There’s an App for That

by Valerie Tarico

Given that 82 percent of teen pregnancies are unintended, it should come as no surprise that sexual health advocates are eager to make information and services even easier to access and more appealing to emerging adults. Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, which serves Western Washington, Alaska, and Southern Idaho, recently rolled out a telemedicine pilot project that may help to do just that.

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George Dvorsky

12 Technologies We Need To Stop Stalling On And Develop Now

by George Dvorsky

The pace of technological change is governed by many factors — including public demand. Which is why we need to be demanding more. Here are 12 transformative technologies whose development should be expedited right now. To make this list meaningful, I only included those items that are within reasonable technological reach. Sure, it would be nice to have molecular assemblers, warp drives, and the recipe for safe artificial intelligence, but it’ll be decades before we can reasonably embark upon such projects.

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Melanie Swan

iSchools: Contemporary Information Technology Theory Studies

by Melanie Swan

The perfect merger of academic rigor and contemporary thinking has come together in the concept of iSchools, which give practical consideration and interesting learning opportunities to the most relevant issue of our time: information.

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SETI Institute: Risky tales: Talking with Seth Shostak at Big Picture Science

SETI Institute: Big Picture Science

IEET contributor, Andrew Maynard: “I had a roller coaster of an interview with Seth Shostak (Director of the Center for SETI Research and host of Big Picture Science) last week on risk and black swan events. I was poised to talk about rare but high impact events like a mega-eruption at Yellowstone National Park, or a major asteroid hit.”

I was going to put these into context with more common risks – such as getting cancer, dying from excessive heat, or being killed by a dog bite (yes, it happens more than you’d think).

I was prepared to talk with authority about micromorts, and the relative risk of being killed in a fall versus a car crash (surprisingly similar as it turns out).

I’d done my homework.

Not that it mattered.  Like all the best interviews, this one went off piste at frightening speed.

We talked about the risks of new technologies; the dangers (or not) of  using cell phones; probability distributions and sparse risk-event data sets; insurance companies and premiums; to fear – and sharks; dread;  emotional responses to perceived risks; getting your kids vaccinated (do); familiar risks; unfamiliar risks; ebola; confusing concern with fear; making sense of big numbers.  We even talked about how extending our lifespans to centuries might change how we think about risk.

We didn’t talk about micromorts.

But with hindsight, that may have been the wafer thin mint that pushed us over the edge of risk-gluttony.  A black swan event well-avoided.

You can hear the full episode at Big Picture Science on the Tale of the Distribution.  My segment begins at 37:55

(And, just in case you’re wondering, your chances of dying in a mega-eruption at Yellowstone during a one month vacation, are around a tenth of a micromort.  Probably.)


SETI: 

We all have at least some musical talent. But very few of us can play the piano like Vladimir Horowitz. His talent was rarefied, and at the tail end of the bell curve of musical ability – that tiny sliver of the distribution where you find the true outliers. Outliers also exist with natural events: hurricane Katrina, for example, or the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. Such events are rare, but they often have outsized effects.

In this hour we imagine the unimaginable – including the unexpected events labeled “black swans” – and how we weigh the risk for any of them. Also, how a supervolcano explosion at Yellowstone National Park could obliterate the western U.S. but shouldn’t stop you from putting the park on your vacation itinerary.

Guests:

 

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Review The Future: What is the Future of Education?

Review the Future

In this week’s podcast, we discuss the future of education. We examine the advantages and disadvantages of MOOCs and other online courses, and in the process we identify four distinct educational challenges: communicating information, fostering motivation, certifying knowledge, and building community. We also stress the importance of returning to first principles and asking fundamental questions about what the purpose of education is. At the end of the episode we discuss the possibility of augmented reality to revolutionize the practice of “learning by doing.”

Podcast: Play in new window | PLease Click Here if your browser cannot play the above sound

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Neuroscience Symposium: Genetics in psychiatry

Roche

Participants at the Neuroscience Symposium shed light on how genetics are influencing our understanding of psychiatry and what this means for diseases such as schizophrenia.

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Ryan Grim

Drug That Lost High-Stakes Political Fight For Funding Now Being Used Against Ebola

by Ryan Grim

WASHINGTON—An experimental drug now being used by the U.S. government to treat Ebola patients lost a high-stakes battle for federal funding several years ago. The politically connected drug company that won the dispute, meanwhile, filed for bankruptcy in September.

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Seth Baum

Planetary Boundaries And Global Catastrophic Risk

by Seth Baum

Back in 2012, I was invited to spend a few weeks visiting at the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN), a federally funded Japanese research institute based in the beautiful city of Kyoto. I was invited by my colleague Itsuki Handoh of RIHN. During my visit, Handoh and I came up with an idea for how to fuse two important lines of research on major global threats.

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Morality and God

Adam Ford

Debate Topic: “If God does not exist, then everything is permitted”

Event Synopsis : In his novel the The Brothers Karamazov, Russian philosopher Fyodor Dostoyevsky asked the question: "how will man be after that? Without God and the future life? It means everything is permitted now, one can do anything?" This quote encapsulates an idea that seems to resonate with many people - if there is no God, there can be no ultimate, objective source for moral values. If there is no God, then everything is permitted.

In this debate, we will meticulously analyse this idea. Can there be an objective grounding for ethics without God? If Atheism is true, does that mean that all moral values are merely subjective opinion? Can there be a secular basis for ethics independent of God? What basis does a naturalist have for thinking one moral system superior to another?

The speakers will first present their arguments, and then each speaker will have an opportunity for rebuttal. There will then be a moderated discussion between the two speakers, promoted by questions from the audience. Join us for what we hope will be both an enlightening and a challenging evening of honest and friendly engagement with this important question.

Links to the slide presentations: John Hudson (Christian) http://goo.gl/3Jv0M6 http://goo.gl/q0d0WY , James Fodor (Atheist) http://goo.gl/yefSnk http://goo.gl/KTob0Z

Speakers

For: John Hudson, Melbourne Evangelical Church

John studied mathematics and computer science at RMIT, worked as a scientific programmer, studied theology at Moore College, and now pastors Melbourne Evangelical Church. John is married to Bek and they have three kids, with a fourth due in early January. John's area of interests include philosophy, ethics, free will and God's sovereignty.

Against: James Fodor, University of Melbourne Secular Society

James is studying a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Melbourne, with a focus on maths, physics, and computing. He is currently president of the University of Melbourne Secular Society, a student club which strives to promote rationality, skepticism, and secularism on campus. His other interests include interfaith dialogue, epistemology, effective altruism, science communication, emerging technologies, and history.

https://www.facebook.com/events/75978…

Subscribe to this Channel: http://youtube.com/subscription_cente…

Science, Technology & the Future: http://scifuture.org

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Michael Abrams

Random Neuron Connections

by Michael Abrams

With its 100 million neurons per square inch, the brain is a pretty powerful processor, even if we can’t always beat computers at chess these days. But just how the circuits that make up that wondrous seat of consciousness form themselves has long been anybody’s guess.

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Rick Searle

Digital Afterlife: 2045

by Rick Searle

Of all the bewildering diversity of new of consumer choices on offer before the middle of the century that would have stunned people from only a generation earlier, none was perhaps as shocking as the many ways there now were to be dead. As in all things of the 21st century what death looked like was dependent on the wealth question.

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Is the UN up to the job?

United Nations

Statement by H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General, on the occasion of the United Nations Day (24 October). UN Day marks the anniversary of the entry into force in 1945 of the UN Charter. 24 October has been celebrated as United Nations Day since 1948. In 1971, the United Nations General Assembly recommended that the day be observed by Member States as a public holiday.

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Digital Leaders TV: The Internet of Things (S01E01) - Full Episode (48min)

Digital Leaders

The Pilot Episode of Digital Leaders TV, presented by BBC Click’s +Kate Russell will discuss the Internet of Things with a panel of industry experts including Nick Appleyard, Ewan Dalton and Martin Wright.

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Winning the war on cancer?

nature video

In 1971, the then president of the United States, Richard Nixon, declared ‘war’ on cancer. Since then, billions of dollars have been poured into cancer research worldwide, but a cure for the disease is still a long way off. In this Nature Video, reporter Lorna Stewart marks the scientific milestones of the past four decades. She explores cancer genetics with Nobel laureate Michael Bishop, vaccines with fellow laureate Harald zur Hausen, and two young researchers tell Lorna about some of cancer research’s greatest success stories.

 

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Alex Nichols

Transhumanism and Moral Enhancement

by Alex Nichols

With futurist thinkers supporting the notion of human upgrading through technological enhancement, what parameters are considered in respect to moral enhancement? What cross cultural barriers and variations in moral reasoning are we targeting for such upgrades? Moreover, is moral enhancement simply a term we fear delving into despite the association it arguably has to almost everything our culture produces?

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