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




whats new at ieet

3.8 Billion Years of Wisdom: Intelligence in Nature (1 hr)

Bostrom on Superintelligence (2): The Instrumental Convergence Thesis

Boko Haram and the Threat of Islamic Extremism in Africa

Bostrom on Superintelligence (1): The Orthogonality Thesis

Dazed and Confused — The Case for Comprehensive Sexual Education

Soylent Update Keto Version


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

rms on 'Convergent Risk, Social Futurism, and the Wave of Change (Part 2 of 2)' (Jul 30, 2014)

rms on 'The Maverick Nanny with a Dopamine Drip: Debunking Fallacies in the Theory of AI Motivation' (Jul 30, 2014)

CygnusX1 on 'Sherlock Holmes as Cyborg and the Future of Retail' (Jul 30, 2014)

CygnusX1 on 'The Problem with the Trolley Problem, or why I avoid utilitarians near subways' (Jul 30, 2014)

Taiwanlight on 'Building the Virtues Control Panel' (Jul 30, 2014)

David Roden on 'What is the Difference between Posthumanism and Transhumanism?' (Jul 30, 2014)

Rick Searle on 'The Problem with the Trolley Problem, or why I avoid utilitarians near subways' (Jul 29, 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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What is the Difference between Posthumanism and Transhumanism?
Jul 28, 2014
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RSS feedETHICAL TECHNOLOGY

John Danaher

Should we have a right not to work?

by John Danaher

Voltaire once said that “work saves a man from three great evils: boredom, vice and need.” Many people endorse this sentiment. Indeed, the ability to seek and secure paid employment is often viewed as an essential part of a well-lived life. Those who do not work are reminded of the fact. They are said to be missing out on a valuable and fulfilling human experience. The sentiment is so pervasive that some of the foundational documents of international human rights law — including the UN Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR Art. 23) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR Art. 6) — recognise and enshrine the “right to work”.

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Eric Schulke

Fighting to Save Lives - The Struggle for Indefinite Life Extension

by Eric Schulke

This is a statue of Dick Winters from the Allied 101 airborne and Easy Company of World War II. He didn’t let us down with the war against the Nazis, battling through Normandy, Operation Market Garden, the Battle of the Bulge and the invasion of Germany to get to them and capture and shoot them so they would stop threatening all of our freedoms. I’m very sorry and eternally saddened that the world couldn’t get to the goal of indefinite life extension therapy available for all, in time for more people like Dick.

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Amon Twyman

Liberal Democracy, The Third Way, & Social Futurism (pt. 2 of 3)

by Amon Twyman

Most broadly, Social Futurism stands for positive social change through technology; i.e. to address social justice issues in radically new ways which are only just now becoming possible thanks to technological innovation. If you would like some introduction to Social Futurist ideas, you can read the introduction page at wavism.net and there are links to articles at http://IEET.org listed at the top of this post. In this post I will discuss the Social Futurist alternative to Liberal Democratic and Authoritarian states, how that model fits with our views on decentralization and subsidiarity, and its relevance to the political concept of a “Third Way“.

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Artificial Intelligence - We Had Better Start Thinking About it Now!

Adam Ford

Adam Ford asks the author of The Artilect War: Cosmists Vs. Terrans: A Bitter Controversy Concerning Whether Humanity Should Build Godlike Massively Intelligent Machines, Hugo de Garis, some vital questions about the future of the intelligence explosion.

What are the stakes in building Strong Artificial Intelligence?

What do we stand to loose if the gamble does not pay off? What do we stand to gain if it does pay off?

Prof. Hugo de Garis is 64, and has lived in 7 countries (Australia, England, Holland, Belgium, Japan, US, China). He got a PhD in Artificial Life and Artificial Intelligence from Brussels University in 1991. He was formerly director of the Artificial Brain Lab (ABL) at Xiamen University in China, where he was building China’s first artificial brain, by evolving large numbers of neural net modules using supercomputers. He guest edited, with Ben Goertzel, the planet’s first special issue of an academic journal on Artificial Brains, and is currently writing a book Artificial Brains : An Evolved Neural Net Module Approach for World Scientific.


Hugo de Garis & Ben Goerzel on the Singularity

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John Danaher

Feminism and the Basic Income (Part Two)

by John Danaher

This is the second part of my series on feminism and the basic income. In part one, I looked at the possible effects of an unconditional basic income (UBI) on women. I also looked at a variety of feminist arguments for and against the UBI. The arguments focused on the impact of the UBI on economic independence, freedom of choice, the value of unpaid work, and women’s labour market participation.

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Primitivism, Progress, the Transhuman & the Technological Avalanche

Adam Ford

Adam Ford talks with John Zerzan about Primitivism, Progress, the Transhuman & the Technological Avalanche.
Why can’t we solve the problem of the progress trap with the use of technology?

It is through technology (i.e. computation) we really understand how fragile the environment is, approach understanding butterfly effects

Describe the incremental progress to Primitivism?
Were we ever purely biological? Without artifacts and instruments? Where do you draw the line…how primitive are we talking? where do you draw the line? what sorts of technology are ok?

is Primitivism an all or nothing approach? Can it co-exist with Transhumanism?
ability to encode ideals/philosophies with or without advanced language and recording?

Technological advancements in bio-engineering, nanotechnology, cybernetics, amongst others, have the potential to be progress traps, and the global scale of modern society means that a societal collapse could impact all of mankind.

 

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Andrew Maynard

How safe is the world’s darkest material?

by Andrew Maynard

Over the past few days, the interweb’s been awash with virtual “oohs” and “ahs” over Surrey Nanosystems’ carbon nanotube-based Vantablack coating.  The material – which absorbs over 99.9% of light falling onto it and is claimed to be the world’s darkest material – is made up of a densely packed “forest” of vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (see the image below).  In fact the name “vanta” stands for Vertically Aligned NanoTube Array.

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Kelly Hills

Ziploc: There’s No Better Way to Protect Your Select Agent Investment

by Kelly Hills

A lot of interesting testimony came out of yesterday’s House Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee hearing, which was titled “Review of CDC Anthrax Lab Incident,” but broadly covered the numerous slapstick-’cept-it-ain’t-funny errors around dangerous pathogens research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Maria Konovalenko

What Should Be Done to Achieve Radical Life Extension?

by Maria Konovalenko

Theoretically the problem is already solved. It is now quite obvious what kind of research should be done for life extension. For example, testing various combinations of different things that extend lifespan in old mice. Particularly important is longevity gene therapy development.

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Evan Selinger

Why We Should Be Careful About Adopting Social Robots

by Evan Selinger

Although Jibo, designed by MIT professor Cynthia Breazeal to be the “world’s first family robot,” isn’t set to ship until 2015, folks are already excited about this little bot with a “big personality.” While there’s much to be said for Breazeal’s vision of “humanizing technology” so that the smart home of the future doesn’t “feel cold and computerized,” we might want to pause a bit before rushing to build the type of world depicted in the movieHer. Although it is easy to imagine we’ll be better off when we’ve got less to do, we don’t actually know the existential and social implications ofoutsourcing ever-more intimate tasks to technology.

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History of a Time to Come

Adam Ford

Adam Ford: “Michio is the author of many best sellers, most recently “the Future of the Mind” - We are entering a golden age of Neuroscience - today it seems much of the discourse today seems to be it’s use in helping understand and treat mental illness (which is great) - though you suggest there will also be other uses…”


What is it that is driving this revolution?

How do you think your background in Theoretical Physics shape your view on the future of the mind?

Intelligence enhancement, Internet of the mind - brain-net, like a hive mind? Where are we at with AI?

Many AI experts and scientists agree that some time in the future a Singularity will be possible (often disagreeing about when). What are your thoughts on the Singularity?

What about advances in Nanotechnology?
Is the Sticky Fingers problem a show stopper?

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Harry J. Bentham

Homo Sapiens versus Nature?

by Harry J. Bentham

There is often imagined to be a struggle between humans and nature. How does this struggle originate, and what is its resolution? Such a question is central to some religious traditions, and has much room to be explored in literature.

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Nikola Danaylov

Bitcoin: The Financial Singularity is Here

by Nikola Danaylov

I have to admit – I was a total bitcoin skeptic. But after spending several months learning about cryptocurrencies I have come to believe that bitcoin is the financial singularity – the most disruptive technology of our present day beyond whose event-horizon human affairs as we know them – be it financial or otherwise, will be fundamentally transformed.

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Andrew Maynard

Responsible innovation key to the success of emerging technologies

by Andrew Maynard

The World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Emerging Technologies on February 25, 2014 released its annual list of breakthrough technologies. The list highlights 10 trends in technological advancement that could offer innovative solutions to a range of pressing global challenges.  As a member of the council that compiles the list each year, I’m excited to see technologies here that could be truly transformative.  At the same time, realizing the benefits they offer will require a good dose of responsible innovation mixed in with the technologies each trend represents.

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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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