Cosmetic plastic surgery (CPS) gets a bad rep for the obvious reasons. It brings to mind superficial wealthy women living in glamorous places and spending someone else’s money on self-beautification. In a way it seems to be cheating—reversing the normal Darwinian structure of survival based on genetic fitness. However, cosmetic plastic surgery is an inevitable and expected outcome given psychology, natural selection, and changes in technology.
Dr. J. chats with philosopher and journalist Alston Chase, author of In a Dark Wood: The Fight over Forests and the New Tyranny of Ecology and Harvard and the Unabomber: The Education of an American Terrorist. In this second half of the interview they discuss Dr. Chase’s biography of Ted Kaczynski, the ecoterrorist “Unabomber,” linking his extremism to his having been the subject of CIA-connected research on brainwashing and interrogation as an undergraduate at Harvard. (Part 2 of 2)
Dr. J. chats with philosopher and journalist Alston Chase, author of In a Dark Wood: The Fight over Forests and the New Tyranny of Ecology and Harvard and the Unabomber: The Education of an American Terrorist. In this first half of the interview they discuss Dr. Chase’s concept of the “culture of despair” that he believes has produced radical environmentalism among other pathologies. (Part 1 of 2)
Two great talks on the rise and rule of the global ruling class, by David Rothkopf. How a select, insular group of the six thousand most powerful people on the planet make daily decisions that impact the lives of millions across borders and develop ideas that are shaping the history of our times.
What are we finding about the effects of meditation on the brain? Can software save us from digital distractions? Are psychdelics helpful on the road to Enlightenment? Is our innate empathic response to others’ pain suppressed by racism, classism and capitalist hyperindividualism? MP3
Internet pioneer David Gelernter explores the ethereal fuzziness of cognition in his Edge.org article, “Dream-logic, the internet and artificial consciousness.” He’s right about the imperfect and dream-like nature of cognition and conscious thought; AI theorists should certainly take notice.
“The antiscience tendency in anarchism, which does exist, is completely self-defeating on this score [questions of technology and revolution]. I mean, it is going to take, it is going to require sophisticated technology and scientific discoveries to create the possibility for human society to survive—I mean, unless we decide, well, it just shouldn’t survive, we should get down to, you know, 100,000 hunter-gatherers or something. Okay, except for that, if you’re serious about, you know, the billions of people in the world who—and their children and grandchildren, it’s going to require scientific and technological advances.” – Noam Chomsky
Should we accept aging as a part of life? Could we banish aging? And if we could, should we? Tom Ashbrook (On Point) talks with Jonathan Weiner, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “The Beak of the Finch.” His latest book is “Long for This World: The Strange Science of Immortality,” and Judith Campisi, professor at the Buck Institute for Age Research and senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, about the science of super-longevity
Many people, after having certain meditative experiences or taking certain psychedelic substances (especially DMT), emerge with a strong intuitive sense that they have been communicating with intelligent transhuman beings in some other “dimension”—a dimension quite close-by to us, but normally inaccessible to us due to the nature of our mind-architecture and self-structure.
Unless you were born about five minutes ago (in which case you’re probably not reading this article), odds are that in 90 years you will not still be alive, based on current life expectancy figures. But could something happen between now and then to give you a chance, no matter how old you are today?
The economist Juliet Schor spoke at Seattle’s Town Hall May 24, 2010 on her vision of using emerging, open source fab technologies and other innovations to build local self-reliance, adapt to structural unemployment, and create sustainability.
Robert Tercek spoke at the Humanity+ Summit on June 13, 2010 on “Lessons for the Transhumanist Movement from the Self Help Industry.” Tercek is the President of Digital Media for the Oprah Winfrey Network. The slides can be downloaded here
This paper introduces a Partially Connected Neural Evolutionary (Parcone) model and its application to object and gesture recognition as part of the “China Brain Project”, which aims to build China’s first artificial brain, consisting of 10,000s of evolved interconnected neural net modules, each with its own little task, similar to Minsky’s agents.
“The same thrill, the same awe and mystery, comes again and again when we look at any question deeply enough. With more knowledge comes a deeper, more wonderful mystery, luring one on to penetrate deeper still.” - Richard Feynman