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




whats new at ieet

American Society for Engineering Education: Why Diversity is so Important

Why there is no mind/body problem

Why Solitary Confinement Is The Worst Kind Of Psychological Torture

The Trifecta of Roommate Selection Technology: Privacy, Prejudice, And Diversity

The Maverick Nanny with a Dopamine Drip: Debunking Fallacies in the Theory of AI Motivation

Chiding CEOs at Walgreens and Other Corporate Defectors


ieet books

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

Intelligence Unbound: The Future of Uploaded and Machine Minds
by Russell Blackford and Damien Broderick eds.

Between Ape and Artilect: Conversations with Pioneers of AGI and Other Transformative Technologies
by Ben Goertzel ed.

Human Purpose and Transhuman Potential: A Cosmic Vision for Our Future Evolution
by Ted Chu


comments

instamatic on 'Why We’ll Still Be Fighting About Religious Freedom 200 Years From Now!' (Jul 25, 2014)

instamatic on 'The Sad Passing of a Positive Futurist' (Jul 25, 2014)

Giulio Prisco on 'Why We’ll Still Be Fighting About Religious Freedom 200 Years From Now!' (Jul 25, 2014)

Giulio Prisco on 'The Sad Passing of a Positive Futurist' (Jul 25, 2014)

instamatic on 'Should we have a right not to work?' (Jul 24, 2014)

instamatic on 'The Sad Passing of a Positive Futurist' (Jul 24, 2014)

DrJohnty on 'LEV: The Game – Play to Win Indefinite Life' (Jul 24, 2014)







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JET

Transhumanism and Marxism: Philosophical Connections

Sex Work, Technological Unemployment and the Basic Income Guarantee

Technological Unemployment but Still a Lot of Work…

Hottest Articles of the Last Month


Nanomedical Cognitive Enhancement
Jul 11, 2014
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Interview with Transhumanist Biohacker Rich Lee
Jul 8, 2014
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Virtually Sacred, by Robert Geraci – religion in World of Warcraft and Second Life
Jul 3, 2014
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How Should Humanity Steer the Future?
Jul 5, 2014
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RSS feedETHICAL TECHNOLOGY

John Danaher

Feminism and the Basic Income (Part One)

by John Danaher

The introduction of an unconditional basic income (UBI) is often touted as a positive step in terms of freedom, well-being and social justice. That’s certainly the view of people like Philippe Van Parijs and Karl Widerquist, both of whose arguments for the UBI I covered in my two most recent posts. But could there be other less progressive effects arising from its introduction?

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Cyborg Buddha

Adam Ford

IEET Board member Mike LaTorra - a Zen priest and author of A Warrior Blends with Life: A Modern Tao - runs the Trans-Spirit list promoting discussion of neurotheology, neuroethics, techno-spirituality and altered states of consciousness.

IEET Executive Director James Hughes - a former Buddhist monk and attenuated Buddho-Unitarian - is writing a book tentatively titled Cyborg Buddha: Using Neurotechnology to Become Better People.

IEET Board member George Dvorsky - a practicing Buddhist - writes and podcasts frequently from a rationalist, transhumanist, and Buddhist point of view, winning him an award this year as one of the best Buddhist blogs.

The three of us are launching the IEET Cyborg Buddha Project to combine our efforts and promote discussion of the impact that neuroscience and emerging neurotechnologies will have on happiness, spirituality, cognitive liberty, moral behavior and the exploration of meditational and ecstatic states of mind.

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Andrew Maynard

Do we need a better definition for synthetic biology?

by Andrew Maynard

Jim Thomas of the ETC Group has just posted a well reasoned article on the Guardian website  on the challenges of defining the the emerging technology of “synthetic biology”.  The article is the latest in a series of exchanges addressing the potential risks of the technology and its effective regulation.

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John Danaher

Widerquist on Freedom and the Basic Income

by John Danaher

This post is part of an ongoing series I’m doing on the unconditional basic income (UBI). The UBI is an income grant payable to a defined group of people (e.g. citizens, or adults, or everyone) within a defined geo-political space. The income grant could be set at various levels, with most proponents thinking it should be at or above subsistence level, or at least at the maximum that is affordable in a given society. In my most recent post, I looked at Van Parijs’s famous defence of the UBI. Today, I look at Widerquist’s critique of Parijs, as well as his own preferred justification for the UBI.

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Richard Eskow

Disabled Americans: Pawns in a Larger Social Security Game?

by Richard Eskow

William Galston writes in the Wall Street Journal about a Republican senator’s plans to force a confrontation on government disability benefits. Though Mr. Galston doesn’t seem to see it this way, it sounds as if Sen. Orrin Hatch plans to hold benefits for disabled Americans hostage in order to force Social Security cuts on everyone.

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IEET Affiliate Scholar, Dick Pelletier, Hospitalized for Stage 5 Parkinson’s Disease

IEET

We the Family first would like to thank each and every one of you for your positive thoughts and wishes.  We are asking for your assistance to keep Dick on a positive road to recovery.  At this time we just don’t have the means to assist Dick with all the finances for his recovery.

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Buddhism & Transhumanism

Adam Ford

Adam Ford interviews IEET Director, Mike LaTorra about Buddhism & Transhumanism.

Mike LaTorra writes and teaches in Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA. He is author of A Warrior Blends with Life: A Modern Tao. He serves as President of the Daibutsuji Zen Temple, and is on the Board of Directors of the IEET and Humanity+.

 

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Andrew Maynard

Nanojuice for GI tract imaging – is it safe?

by Andrew Maynard

Over the past few days, my news and social media streams have been inundated by articles on “nanojuice”.  The “juice” – developed by researchers at the University of Buffalo and published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology – is a suspension of light-absorbing nanoparticles which, when drunk (and only mice have had this privilege so far), allow an unprecedented level of real-time imaging of the small intestine.  It also presents an unusual series of safety challenges as the particles are designed to be intentionally ingested.

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Kelly Hills

Remaining Inaugural Members of NSABB Dismissed Last Night

by Kelly Hills

It’s not exactly been what one would call a banner month for the National Institutes of Health or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In the last week and change, it’s been revealed that oops, the CDC completely screwed up how it handles anthrax and possibly exposed 86-odd people to anthrax and they accidentally shipped out H9N2 that had been contaminated with H5N1

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The Future of Human Space Exploration (1hr)

University of California Television (UCTV)

Charles Kennel, Former Scripps Institution of Oceanography director and chair of the National Academy’s Space Science Board, reviews what NASA’s space program has accomplished, what it is doing now, and what the future holds for human space exploration.

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Andrew Maynard

Nanoparticles in Dunkin’ Donuts? Do the math!

by Andrew Maynard

Over the past couple of years a number of articles have been posted claiming that we’re eating more food products containing nanoparticles than we know (remember this piece from a couple of weeks ago?).  One of the latest appeared on The Guardian website yesterday with the headline “Activists take aim at nanomaterials in Dunkin’ Donuts” (thanks to @HilarySutcliffe for the tip-off).  

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IEET Fellow, Ramez Naam’s Nexus and Cory Doctorow’s Homeland Tie for the Prometheus Award

lfs.org

Ramez Naam’s novel Nexus and Cory Doctorow’s novel Homeland have tied for the Prometheus Award! The award is given to the best pro-freedom science fiction novel of the year.

 

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Material Marvels: Nanomaterials

Yale University

In this segment of Material Marvels, Dr. Ainissa Ramirez demonstrates how materials behave strangely when they are nanosize—about 1/100,000 the thickness of your hair.

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John Danaher

Parasitic Surfers and the Unconditional Basic Income: A Debate

by John Danaher

I want to write a few posts about the basic income over the next couple of months. This is part of an ongoing interest I have in the future of work and solutions to the problem of technological unemployment. I’ll start by looking at a debate between Philippe van Parijs and Elizabeth Anderson about the justice of an unconditional basic income (UBI).

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David Brin

Everything leaks - get used to it. Use it. Also: is Skynet coming?

by David Brin

Will Wall Street give us Terminator? Others weigh in: A few years ago, I posed a chilling hypothesis, that AGI — or “artificial general intelligence” that’s equivalent or superior to human — might “evolve-by-surprise,” perhaps even suddenly, out of advanced computational systems. And yes, that’s the garish-Hollywood “Skynet” scenario leading to Terminator.

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A 30-year history of the future

TED

MIT Media Lab founder Nicholas Negroponte takes you on a journey through the last 30 years of tech. The consummate predictor highlights interfaces and innovations he foresaw in the 1970s and 1980s that were scoffed at then but are ubiquitous today. And he leaves you with one last (absurd? brilliant?) prediction for the coming 30 years.

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Rick Searle

Why the Castles of Silicon Valley are Built out of Sand

by Rick Searle

If you get just old enough, one of the lessons living through history throws you is that dreams take a long time to die. Depending on how you date it, communism took anywhere from 74 to 143 years to pass into the dustbin of history, though some might say it is still kicking. The Ptolemaic model of the universe lasted from 100 AD into the 1600′s. Perhaps even more dreams than not simply refuse to die, they hang on like ghost, or ghouls, zombies or vampires, or whatever freakish version of the undead suits your fancy. Naming them would take up more room than I can post, and would no doubt start one too many arguments, all of our lists being different. Here, I just want to make an argument for the inclusion of one dream on our list of zombies knowing full well the dream I’ll declare dead will have its defenders.

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Transhumanist, Adam Ford Talks with Primitivist, John Zerzan about Technology and Civilization

Adam Ford

Adam Ford talks with John Zerzan about Primitivism and Transhumanism. They discuss everything from ancient cultures to the effects that modern technology have on people around the world. They also talk about the environment, culture, society, and civilization.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Zerzan

Modern Electronic / Computer parts "sweatshop":

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This Is My Body

Jason Stefaniak

The Womyn in this video voice their concerns about the possible loss of clinics, such as Planned Parenthood and also strongly enforce the truth that they are the ones to make important decisions about their bodies.

*If the video won't play on your mobile device, WATCH IT ON YOUTUBE: youtube.com/watch?v=z2ME8sR-bnY

**Subtitled Version (English): vimeo.com/48314213

**Spanish Subtitled (fan-made): youtube.com/watch?v=w0V1rVgc3WM&list=PLGJHSqNZHCC_2NcpQWC75ztXA5pcnnSP0

Views = Power, so please share, tweet, email and spread this video! Ask your friends and family to do the same and if you have a favorite women's group or political organization, share it with them too!

Read the monologue and post your own videos @: Facebook.com/ThisIsMyBody

Created by Jason Stefaniak and Siobhan O'Loughlin
JasonStefaniak.com SiobhanOloughlin.com

Thank you to all of the generous "This Is My Body" donors:
Christa Harmon. Maureen Hassenbohler. Lisa Rojas. Lauren McDade. Stephanie Cox. Rachel Fauber. Liz Estela. Scott Berjot-Stafiej. Faith Goodiel. Kristina Ticknor. Brendan Leahy. Megan and Tito Colon. Garrett Mannchen. Katrina Rojas. Kristan and Papo Rojas. Gerry Rojas. Dana Facchine. Jason Kwon. Kathryn Ticknor. Kiel McLaughlin. Beth Goodiel. Jess Bass. AnnaRose King. Brie Aines. Andrew Daugherty. Mitch Troescher. Chris Ciancimino. Gloria and Darrin Frizelle. Krista Armentrout. Melissa Brown. Sam Margolis. Deb Moriarty. Brad Snyder. Lisa Marie. Lisa Simmons. Patrick Martinez. Diane Ambrosio. Alexis Riley. Bill Logan. Mary and Pablo Rojas. Sarah Elfreth. Joyce Wu. Becca Epstein. Lauren Seserko. Ivona Stanoeva. Isadora Guerreiro. Janice Murphy. Annie Fleming.

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IEET Readers Iffy About Mandatory Longevity Therapy for Children

We asked “If a gene therapy that added fifty years of life was safe and effective, should parents be legally required to give it to their children?” Only a third of the 182 respondents thought mandatory gene therapy for longevity for kids was a good idea.

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Sued for Libel - Calling Out Pseudoscience in the Middle of Writing a Book on The Simpsons and Math

Adam Ford

Interview with Simon Singh on skepticism, science, and pseudoscience. He was sued for “libel” by the British Chiropractic Association, and in the first video he explains why and how it worked out in the end.

 

Simon Lehna Singh, MBE (born 19 September 1964) is a British author who has specialised in writing about mathematical and scientific topics in an accessible manner. His written works include Fermat’s Last Theorem (in the United States titled Fermat’s Enigma: The Epic Quest to Solve the World’s Greatest Mathematical Problem), The Code Book (about cryptography and its history), Big Bang (about the Big Bang theory and the origins of the universe), Trick or Treatment? Alternative Medicine on Trial (about complementary and alternative medicine) and The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets (about mathematical ideas and theorems hidden in episodes of The Simpsons and Futurama).

Singh has also produced documentaries and works for television to accompany his books, is a trustee of NESTA, the National Museum of Science and Industry and co-founded the Undergraduate Ambassadors Scheme.

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Melanie Swan

Nanomedical Cognitive Enhancement

by Melanie Swan

Overview of Advances Articulated in Nanomedical Device and Systems Design: Challenges, Possibilities, Visions (2013) [1] This article provides an overview of the research findings related to cognitive enhancement that are presented in Nanomedical Device and Systems Design: Challenges, Possibilities, Visions (2013), an encyclopedic textbook chronicling a plethora of recent advances in myriad areas of nanotechnology and nanomedicine. The final chapter discusses progress in nanomedical cognitive enhancement, where we find ourselves in a modern era in which many technologies appear to be on the cusp – helping to resolve pathologies while also having much future potential for the augmentation of human capabilities.

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John Danaher

Radcliffe-Richards on Sexual Inequality and Justice (Part Two)

by John Danaher

Should we worry that only X% of CEOs, or politicians or philosophers (or whatever) are women? Is there something unjust or morally defective about a society with low percentages of women occupying these kinds of roles? That’s what we’re looking at in this series of posts, based on Janet Radcliffe-Richard’s (RR’s) paper “Only X%: the Problem of Sex Inequality”.

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Kris Notaro

Geoengineering as a Human Right

by Kris Notaro

Geoengineering has come under attack recently by conspiracy theorists, scientists, to “greens.” There have been many kinds of proposals for geoengineering, and even a legal/illegal experiment pouring 200,000 pounds of iron sulfate into the North Pacific which was supposed to increase plankton that would absorb carbon dioxide. The experiment did not work and pissed off a lot of scientists. China also recently stopped their “flattening of mountains.” Therefore this article is not purely about techniques of combating global warming, but about the need for people to understand that geoengineering is a must, not only a must, but also a “human right.”

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What Kind of Computer is the Brain?

MIT Alumni Association

Joshua Tenenbaum of MIT (Postdoctoral Associate, Artificial Intelligence Laboratory) talks about the difference between supercomputers and the human brain. The human brain is the single most impressive computational artifact in existence. It has long been an assumption that it is best understood scientifically as some kind of computer. But what kind? This talk will touch on the two classic views of the brain as a symbolic logic engine, and the brain as a statistical learning machine.

However successful each of these models has been, they cannot explain or reproduce the heart of human common sense. Prof. Tenenbaum will consider a third alternative: the brain as a simulation engine in which he combines aspects of the two classic views into a model that is capable of explaining human common-sense reasoning.

Image:
http://brainpages.org/whats-the-difference-between-the-mind-and-the-brain/

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Scientists Find ‘On/Off Switch’ For Human Consciousness

newsy

Newsy reports on how George Washington University scientists found a way to turn on and off consciousness using electrical stimulation.

Image:
http://design.creativefan.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/final-face.jpg

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George Dvorsky

Why Anesthesia Is One of the Greatest Medical Mysteries of Our Time

by George Dvorsky

Anesthesia was a major medical breakthrough, allowing us to lose consciousness during surgery and other painful procedures. Trouble is, we’re not entirely sure how it works. But now we’re getting closer to solving its mystery — and with it, the mystery of consciousness itself. When someone goes under, their cognition and brain activity continue, but consciousness gets shut down.

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DeepMind, MetaMed, Existential Risk, and the Intelligence Explosion

Adam Ford

Adam Ford and Jaan Tallinn talk about DeepMind, MetaMed, Existential Risk, and the Intelligence Explosion.

Jaan is an Estonian programmer who participated in the development of Skype in 2002 and FastTrack/Kazaa, a file-sharing application in 2000.

Tallinn is partner and co-founder of the development company Bluemoon which created the game SkyRoads. He graduated from the University of Tartu in 1996 with a BSc in Theoretical Physics with a thesis that involved traveling interstellar distances using warps in space-time.

 

Image:
http://www.swide.com/art-culture/google-buys-artificial-intelligence-firm-deepmind/2014/01/31

 

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Harming and Protecting Robots

lift

Workshop concept & moderation by Kate Darling and Hannes Gassert.

Robots act more and more socially, and humans thus get more and more entangled emotionally, ethically and perhaps even legally.

The workshop participants will explore the psychology of hurting and killing robots designed to bond with humans. In small groups they will make social experiments, record their reactions and contemplate potential future social and legal norms to deal with seemingly sentient robotic companions.

image:
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-CbqHPA3rRmk/T9XobP0hFBI/AA
AAAAAAGd0/vXiJ68rKEdY/s1600/sad_robot-1920x1200.jpg

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John Danaher

Radcliffe-Richards on Sexual Inequality and Justice (Part One)

by John Danaher

Let’s start with a thought experiment. Suppose that in a given population 50% of people have blue eyes and 50% have brown eyes. Suppose further that there is no evidence to suggest that eye colour has any effect on cognitive ability; indeed, suppose that everything we know suggests that cognitive ability is equally distributed among blue and brown-eyed people. Now imagine that in this population 80% of all senior academics and professors are blue-eyed. What conclusions should we draw about the justice of this society?

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