Sex, on its own, in the wild, natural and unadorned, is still complicated. Don’t believe me? Look at a peacock or a bird of paradise. Salmon die after they procreate. Sea slugs penis joust. Now throw in evolved human biology, history, culture, technology, and science and you have a real disaster on your hands.
While it’s common to look at transhumanist themes through the lens of science fiction, I think it’s at least as fascinating to consider the ethical issues and themes explored in controversial, well-written dramas such as Nip/Tuck.
Dr. J. chats with Jayme Canton, CEO of the Institute for Global Futures (globalfuturist.com) and author of The Extreme Future. They discuss the convergence of personalized genomic medicine with human enhancement, and the prospects for employment recovery in the global economy. MP3
If the field of futures were invented today, what would it look like? What would its intellectual foundations be? Who would it serve and influence? And how would its ideas and insights be put into practice?
The only way for us to survive is to evolve. Transhumanism - a movement supporting the use of science and technology to improve the mental and physical characteristics and capacities of humans - is the way forward, writes Natasha Vita-More.
We have been brainwashed to believe that “blood is thicker than water.” But we lack familial shared genes with spouses and best friends. In reality what is most important is shared thoughts, experiences and feelings. Affinity based upon genes is as obsolete as loyalty based upon melanin. The beme is mightier than the gene.
Adam Ford of Singularity Soup interviewed Russell Blackford in October 2009 on his book 50 Voices of Disbelief: Why We Are Atheists, atheism and secularism, indigenous spirituality, radical life extension, and technological change, including the Technological Singularity foreseen by Vernor Vinge and Ray Kurzweil.
It’s divided into six parts, accessible from here:
Dr. J. chats with Jamie Hubbard, a professor of Buddhist Studies at Smith College, and organizer of a conference on the use of neurotechnology to enhance Buddhist practice, April 10, 2010 at Smith College.
Transhumanism spans a huge swath of intellectual territory, straddling bioethics, philosophy, science fiction, engineering, and computer science. Throw in conspiracy theories and cyberpunk nihilism and you have all the ingredients for Deus Ex.
The express aim of enhancement technologies is to overcome our biological limitations: cognitive, emotional and healthspan-related. But what is almost always tacit in discussions of human enhancement is the issue of what exactly constitutes a biological limitation.
I was asked the question, “What can we expect to see from science in the next decade?” My answer comes from the perspective of a social scientist, as I research social problems from the influence of cognitive neuroscience.
Say that I knew that medicine had advanced to the point where I could reasonably expect to live to be 350 years old, with the first two decades, of course, going to maturation, and the last two decades resembling our current aging process. What would I do with all of that time?
British activists have launched a major campaign to push Gordon Brown’s government into adopting a “Robin Hood Tax” on financial transactions—a tiny tax that could raise hundreds of billions for public services and for tackling poverty and climate change. The campaigners unveiled a brilliant little sketch featuring British actor Bill Nighy as a squirming banker.
In this panel discussion moderated by Robert Kane Pappas, director of To Age or Not to Age, distinguished panelists debate the future of anti-aging research. Panelists include: Dr. Robert Butler, Gerontologist, Psychiatrist & Pulitzer-Prize Winner, President and CEO of the International Longevity Center; Dr. Aubrey de Grey, Biomedical Gerontologist, Chief Science Officer, SENS Foundation; and Dr. Leonard P. Guarente, Novartis Professor of Biology, MIT, Director, Paul F. Glenn Lab for Science of Aging.
Dr. J. chats with Dr. Stephen Eric Bronner, professor of political science at Rutgers University and author of Reclaiming the Enlightenment: Toward a Politics of Radical Engagement. Part 2 of 2. (Part 1)
Dr. J. chats with Andrew Fenton who is a part of the Novel Tech Ethics Group at Dalhousie University and the author of “Buddhism and Neuroethics: The Ethics of Pharmaceutical Cognitive Enhancement.” Part 2 of 2. (Part 1)