In a recent Huffington Post article, author George Young asks if we really want to be immortal. He tells the readers about Igor Vishev, a Russian philosopher, who believes that the first people to become immortal are likely to be already born today.
18 Things You Should Know About Genetics is an animated film that presents fundamental background information about genetics, as well as offering some quirky but interesting facts about DNA, genes and genetics. It was created to be an upbeat, fun educational short film to initiate and draw interest to this sometimes daunting and seemingly complex subject matter.
Recently on Facebook a friend asked: “Hey, atheist friends, I need your help. I would like to listen and read what do you do when you lose somebody who you loved? I have tried several ways to ease the pain, but it is still there.” He addressed his atheist friends because evidently he didn’t want to hear about a supernatural afterlife.
You no longer need high-tech machines to create a plane. Armed with a 3D printer, Jim Scanlan from the University of Southampton and his team designed and built a drone in just a week. Even moving parts were produced all in one go - doing away with the need for assembly. In this video, you can watch the plane take to the skies for the first time in an airfield close to Stonehenge in the UK.
“In a distant future, adventurers prepare for a cosmic journey at Spaceport America, but they will not be boarding any rocket-driven spacecraft. Instead, they simply walk through a StarGate-like archway and instantly step onto a planet hundreds of light years from Earth.”
Step by step guide showing how to convert a smartdrive washing machine into a pelton wheel dc generator making 780 watts, the power is fed into a small battery bank & inverter - generating enough power to live off the grid.
“Water from Water” discusses the need to supplement world-wide water supplies and explains the vital role that desalination must play in increasing the world’s supply of usable water. Both the history and the future of desalination are explored.
We asked our readers “Should Oscar Pistorius, or other cyborg-enhanced amputees, be allowed to compete against athletes with meat legs?” Now that Pistorius has competed at the Olympics with his carbon spring legs, losing but movingly celebrated by the crowds and the gold-medal winner, what did you all think?
The Aubrey de Grey @Embiggen Books was a pre-Humanity+ @Melbourne activity. The place was packed out and we got very good feedback.
Aubrey talks about the concept of what aging is, the concept of Longevity Escape Velocity, his book “Ending Aging”, accumulated damage, preventative geriatrics, what will the first generation therapies look like?, stem cell therapies, telomeres, telomerase and cancer, over-population of cells (immune system filling with cells not doing what they are supposed to do), mitochondrial mutations etc.
Time Magazine named Jaron Lanier one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2010. His book You Are Not a Gadget was released in early 2010 by Knopf in the USA and Penguin in the UK. He writes and speaks on numerous topics, including high-technology business, the social impact of technological practices, the philosophy of consciousness and information, Internet politics, and the future of humanism. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, Discover (where he has been a columnist), The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Harpers Magazine, The Sciences, Wired Magazine (where he was a founding contributing editor), and Scientific American. He has edited special “future” issues of SPIN and Civilization magazines. He is one of the 100 “remarkable people” of the Global Business Network. In 2005 Lanier was selected as one of the top one hundred public intellectuals in the world by readers of Prospect and Foreign Policy magazines. Jaron begins this talk by playing an 8000 year old Laotian instrument called a Can (sp), and asserts that is it the first binary code technology: an orderly row of objects that are either on or off. He moves into his first hand account of his lab’s invention of avatars, and where they might be going. He stands by his 30 year prediction that virtual reality will mature in 2020 or 2025. Jaron’s wide ranging talk goes into the potential of leveraging the human motor cortex, avatars and virtual reality to explore new equations, and as a great educational platform (predicts that it will succeed because having a kid virtually “be a molecule” “leverages narcissism” and that suddenly makes molecule study self study). He closes his talk with a profound rebuttal to Kevin Kelly’s recent work What Technology Wants- says he respects Kevin’s work tremendously but that his own thesis stands in opposition to Kelly’s. Shares concerns about algorithms disconnecting us from each others, about our models of working with each other online, the rewrite of social rules. Beautiful.
The human brain is a big, complicated system, with different parts doing different things. No one fully understands how it works, yet. But like many other researchers, I think I have a fairly good idea, at a high level.
Table of Contents
00:00 - Introduction
00:44 - Structure of the brain
03:45 - Developing new tools with synthetic biology
05:35 - Current methods of neuron stimulation
09:10 - New method: using light to control neurons
15:31 - Demonstration: neuron control in a mouse
17:07 - Controlling the dopamine system of a mouse
20:06 - Tracing genetic mutations to mental disease
21:50 - Molecular tools for studying mutations
29:29 - Using genome editors to repair mutations
33:54 - Applying genome editors outside of medicine
35:30 - Conclusion
36:30 - Q&A
Analyzing patterns of gene activity during brain development will surely transform scientists’ understanding of neuropsychiatric diseases. In his 2012 Midsummer Nights’ Science lecture, Feng Zhang discusses the invention of novel technologies for genome engineering, and for manipulating activities of different cell types, including neurons. Current applications of these techniques include molecular investigations of processes as diverse as motor function, the reward system, and sleep.
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