Like many physicists, Michio Kaku thinks our universe will end in a “big freeze.” Unlike many physicists, he thinks we might be able to avoid this fate by slipping into a parallel universe “in the same way that Alice entered the looking glass to enter Wonderland.”
In general, I have affection for the goals of H+. However, when I compare my socio-political stances with transhumanism, I discover numerous points of contention. Here’s a brief list of platform issues and my positions that are occasionally in synch with H+ majority but often contrast sharply.
Hugo de Garis is the past director of the Artificial Brain Lab (ABL) at Xiamen University in China who is best known for his doomsday book The Artilect War. This video discusses how and why he got interested in artificial intelligence; Moore’s Law and the laws of physics; the hardware and software requirements for artificial intelligence; why cutting edge experts are often missing the writing on the wall; emerging intelligence and other approaches to AI; Dr. Henry Markram’s Blue Brain Project; the stakes in building AI and his concepts of Artilects, Cosmists and Terrans; cosmology, the Fermi Paradox and the Drake equation; the advance of robotics and the political, ethical, legal and existential implications thereof; species dominance as the major issue of the 21st century; the technological singularity and our chances of surviving it in the context of fast and slow take-off.
Reincarnation is the religious or philosophical concept that the soul or spirit, after biological death, begins a new life in a new body. This doctrine is a central tenet of the Indian religions and a common belief of pagan religions found in many tribal societies around the world. I don’t think there is a “spirit” or “soul” separate from the information encoded in our brain. But if there is, what can it be?
What did IEET visitors read, view, and argue about in June? AI, parenting, gender, religion, enhancement, The Singularity, and the Future were all popular topics. Statistics with links are provided to the Top 10-15 in three categories.
The thesaurus might equate “disabled” with synonyms like “useless” and “mutilated,” but ground-breaking runner Aimee Mullins is out to redefine the word. Defying these associations, she hows how adversity—in her case, being born without shinbones—actually opens the door for human potential.
Here’s a list of enhancements I would appreciate having, and I expect they’ll all be available in my lifetime. I begin with my 10th choice, and conclude with the #1 upgrade that I desire the most. What super-enhancement would you like to have? Do you want what I want, or something even more incredible?
Last month a gaggle of science publications reported that researchers had devised a way to harness the light from fireflies using nanotechnology. As a lifelong firefly enthusiast, I simply could not believe that the crepuscular creature of my childhood would now be opening the gateway for bioluminescence in consumer products as well as enhanced, energy-efficient technology.
Last year a court in Southern Nigeria remanded in custody 4 persons for allegedly killing a hunchback woman, Mrs Ifeoma Angela Igwe for ritual purposes. According to the report, the hoodlums went to the woman’s house and kidnapped her. They took her to a nearby bush where they beheaded her, butchered her and removed the hunch. It is believed that the hunch contains ‘magical substance or mercury’ which can make people rich. I do not know how Nigerians came about this erroneous idea.
Peter Singer has written a piece in which he argues that your freedom of religion has not been violated unless the state enacts a law that effectively prohibits you from doing something which is required by your religion.
We may be bots in a reality-wide simulation, and perhaps the player(s) from above can violate our simulated physics when they want. In a more popular formulation of the same concept, called Religion, the player(s), called God(s), created our reality and can perform miracles.
Naked mole rats basically live 9 times more than “they should.” At an age equivalent to a human age of 92 years, naked mole-rats show unchanged levels of activity and metabolic rate, as well as sustained muscle mass, fat mass, bone density, cardiac health, and neuron number.
What exactly is cultural identity? Is there something fundamentally absurd about claiming as your identity aspects of your self that are mere accidents of birth? Is defining cultural identity as group history irrational because it lacks recognition of the individual?
Today, Silicon Valley is known around the world as a fount of technology innovation and development fueled by private venture capital and peopled by fabled entrepreneurs. But it wasn’t always so. Unbeknownst to even seasoned inhabitants, today’s Silicon Valley had its start in government secrecy and wartime urgency. World War II, the Cold War and one Stanford professor set the stage for the creation and explosive growth of entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley. The world was forever changed when the Defense Department, CIA and the National Security Agency acted like today’s venture capitalists funding this first wave of entrepreneurship.
Brave is a much richer and more important film than most people realize. Context as they say, is everything. And to understand why Brave matters, we have to look at it within the context of animated films up to this point.
Cindy lost her mother at the age of three and was taken in by her aunt, who taught her English. That experience sparked Cindy’s passion for learning. In this video she talks about her dream of becoming a lawyer and fighting for justice.
In my last in this series on personhood, I mentioned that in attempting to consider how to value other beings, for my own purposes, I settled long ago on a simple, defining characteristic: For my interactions with other beings, I ask whether they can experience pain. If they can experience pain, I have decided to do my best not to inflict pain upon them.
IEET Blog |
email list |
The IEET is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization registered in the State of Connecticut in the United States.
East Coast Contact: Executive Director, Dr. James J. Hughes,
56 Daleville School Rd., Willington CT 06279 USA
Email: director @ ieet.org phone:
West Coast Contact: Managing Director, Hank Pellissier
425 Moraga Avenue, Piedmont, CA 94611
Email: hank @ ieet.org