Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies



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



UPCOMING EVENTS: Neuroethics



MULTIMEDIA: Neuroethics Topics

Increase Your Productivity by Mastering Singular Focus and Mindful Meditation

This is your brain on communication

This is your brain on communication

Is your phone part of your mind?

Van Gogh’s Mental Illness

Cyborgs are not just science fiction, they are becoming reality

What Science Says about Monogamy

What Psychological Traits Does the Con Artist Look for in Victims?

How Soon Will Genetic Enhancement Create Smarter Humans?

Will Virtual Reality Movies Supplant the Theatrical Experience?

The Baby Boomers Gave the Millennials a New Drug. Technology

“Logic of Imagination” Propels Scientific Discovery

Cynicism Is a Toxic Mental State that Inhibits Creativity

Ken Hayworth - Verifiable Brain Preservation

Here’s a Neurochemical Profile of 3 Presidential Candidates — And Their Supporters




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Neuroethics Topics




IEET Affiliate Scholar John Danaher Publishes New Paper on Moral Enhancement

IEET Affiliate Scholar John Danaher has a new paper coming out in the journal Neuroethics. This one argues that directly augmenting the brain might be the most politically appropriate method of moral enhancement. This paper brings together his work on enhancement, the extended mind, and the political consequences of advanced algorithmic governance. Details below:

Full Story...
Link to Neuroethics



IEET Affiliate Scholar John Danaher Publishes New Paper in Journal: Bioethics

IEET Affiliate Scholar John Danaher published a new paper coming out in the journal Bioethics. It’s about the philosophy of education and student use of cognitive enhancement drugs. It suggests that universities might be justified in regulating their students’ use of enhancement drugs, but only in a very mild, non-compulsory way. It suggests that a system of voluntary commitment contracts might be an interesting proposal. The details are below.

Full Story...
Link to Bioethics



Ethicists Generally Agree: The Pro-Life Arguments Are Worthless

by John G. Messerly

Abortion continues to make political news, but a question rarely asked by politicians or other interlocutors is: what do professional ethicists think about abortion? If ethicists have reached a consensus about the morality or immorality of abortion, surely their conclusions should be important. And, as a professional ethicist myself, I can tell you that among ethicists it is exceedingly rare to find defenders of the view that abortion is murder. In fact, support for this anti-abortion position, to the extent it exists at all, comes almost exclusively from the small percentage of philosophers who are theists. Yet few seem to take notice of this fact.



I Know What You’re Thinking…

by Nicole Sallak Anderson

“What I hate is ignorance, smallness of imagination, the eye that sees no farther than its own lashes. All things are possible. Who you are is limited only by who you think you are.”

~ Egyptian Book of the Dead, written between 2000 – 1500 B.C.



Moral Bioenhancement: Thinking Synergistically - interview with Harris Wiseman

by Hank Pellissier

Harris Wiseman gained his PhD from the University of Cambridge, and is author of the book The Myth of the Moral Brain – The Limits of Moral Enhancement, published by MIT Press.

I emailed him the interview questions below:

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Transhuman Debate 2.0 in SF East Bay

IEET is co-sponsoring “Transhuman Debate 2.0” on April 2, 2016, from 12:30 - 4:00pm in Oakland, CA, at Octopus Literary Salon, 2101 Webster St, #170 - only 2 blocks from BART.

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Google Hedonics

by Andrés Gómez Emilsson

Hello my children!
Hello my sons!
Hello my daughters!
Hello my brothers and sisters!
I’m here to tell you that the world’s last unpleasant experience…
Will be a precisely dateable event!
Yes! It will happen in our lifetimes if we commit all of our energy today…

To the task of Paradise Engineering!

– Yacht, Paradise Engineering

(referencing David Pearce’s Hedonistic Imperative

Full Story...



Political Delusions - Do we just rationalize our emotional decisions?

by David Brin

I’ve long maintained that humanity’s greatest gift and greatest curse are one and the same - our prodigious talent for delusion.  For believing things - passionately - that are belied by both logic and evidence. This is the wellspring of great art. Indeed, as a novelist* I cater to the desire of my own customers to - temporarily and knowingly - believe they are experiencing other realities and the thoughts of credible characters, engaged in barely plausible adventures.

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Western Philosophy - The Beginnings of Rationalistic Thinking

by John G. Messerly

The word philosophy comes from two Greek roots meaning “the love of wisdom.” Thus philosophers are (supposed to be) lovers of wisdom. In the western world, philosophy traces its beginnings to the ancient Ionian city of Miletus, the richest city in the ancient Greek world. There, on the eastern edge of the Mediterranean in the sixth century B.C.E., the Greeks began to systematically apply human reason to questions concerning nature and human life without reference to the supernatural.

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Reconnaître l’IA

by Cyril Gazengel

Le propre de l’homme ?
L’intelligence, ce domaine suprême dans lequel l’humain se croit leader est peut-être en train de vivre ses dernières années anthropocentriques. Déjà, l’idée d’une exclusivité humaine de certains traits vus comme définissant l’intelligence s’est vue taillée en brèche au XXe siècle où nombre d’animaux se sont retrouvés avec des dons antérieurement associés aux seuls hominidés.



Future Emotions: How Synaesthesia, Technology and Experimental Music Dilate Our Internal Geographies

by Rory Viner

What follows is a description of experiments using the medium of sound and emerging sound technologies to destabilize conceptions and reposition ourselves to histories of social trauma and to our own sense of self. Can we interrogate these intersections of meaning and data in new ways? Can we dilate emotional immediacy through such re­imaginings? Does technology allow and help us to reconsider these approaches?

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La guerre invisible

by EMG

Je tenterai, dans cet article, de poser quelques réflexions sur le sujet de l’Emulation de Cerveau Entier (ECE), qui me semble trop rapidement traité dans l’espace francophone, alors que c’est précisément un sujet qui évolue très vite et qui permet de toucher à beaucoup de domaines de connaissances de l’humain. Fasciné par les perspectives qu’il ouvre, je suis depuis plusieurs années les aventures des (trop) rares scientifiques qui le prennent au sérieux. Dans une deuxième partie, je comparerai le chantier de l’ECE avec d’autres grands projets humains récents ou moins récents.



Ontological Qualia: The Future of Personal Identity

by Andrés Gómez Emilsson

*WARNING* If you are not psychologically robust, this *may* be a memetic hazard. It talks about ideas that may affect hedonic tone in people susceptible to bad philosophical experiences.

Personal Identity

What is personal identity? The word consciousness has many meanings.

Full Story...



How ‘Memory Hacking’ Is Becoming a Reality

by George Dvorsky

Movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Inception suggest it may eventually be possible to erase, modify, or even implant memories into your brain. An upcoming episode of NOVA introduces viewers to this futuristic possibility and the scientists who are trying to make it happen.



The Man with Two Brains: Suicidal Ideation and the Promise of Immortality

by Gareth John

As someone with bipolar affective disorder, I’m constantly at a loss as to the gulf that separates between the technoprogressive vision that I aspire to and the severe depression that has a life-long history of suicide attempts, from my teens all the way up until my current mid-forties. It should be apparent that I’m not very skilled at it.

Full Story...



What we call mental illness is coerced contractual agreements

by Johan Nygren

Towards a governance 2.0 definition of mental illness


Belief, like fear or love, is a force to be understood as we understand the theory of relativity or principles of uncertainty, phenomena that determine the course of our lives. These forces begin long before we are born and continue after we perish. Our lives are not our own — we are bound to others — and through each crime, and every kindness, we birth our future.

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Le choix d’une vie très longue en bonne santé : pourquoi ? (3/4) : Effets possibles

by Marc Roux

Poursuite de la réflexion sur “Le choix d’une vie très longue en bonne santé : pourquoi?”



Hughes, Rinesi quoted in Motherboard essay on Sleep Tech

IEET Executive Director James Hughes and IEET CTO Marcelo Rinesi were extensively quoted in a Motherboard essay titled “Sleep Tech Will Widen the Gap Between the Rich and the Poor.

Full Story...
Link to Motherboard



Report on Nigeria ICT Festival 2015

by Agbolade Omowole

Mascot Information and Technology Solutions held the maiden edition of Nigeria ICT Fest on December 4, 2015 at Magrellos fast food, Festac Town, Lagos, and December 5, 2015 at Radisson Blu Anchorage hotel at No. 1A, Ozumba Mbadiwe Avenue, Victoria Island, Lagos, to bridge the technology gap between Nigeria and the developed world.

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#7: Ten Health Benefits of Marijuana

by Marc Howard

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on August 29, 2015,  and is the #7 most viewed of the year.

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Commentaire critique de l’avis n°122 du CCNE sur la “neuro-amélioration”

by Marc Roux

Une franche avancée du transhumanisme : Le Comité National d’éthique reconnaît le sérieux de ses hypothèses (Mais se trompe en partie de cible dans ses critiques).

Originally published on May 20, 2014



Children Beating Up Robot Inspires New Escape Maneuver System

by Kate Darling

A few years ago, the curious folks at the Radiolab show/podcast asked some kids to hold a Barbie doll, a live hamster, and a Furby robot upside down.  Not surprisingly, the children were unfazed by the Barbie, holding it on its head for a long time. When it was the hamster’s turn, the kids were quick to release the squirming animal, for fear that they were hurting it (no surprise here either).

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#17: Big Data as Statistical Masturbation

by Rick Searle

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on February 15, 2015, and is the #17 most viewed of the year.



When “Upgrading” Your Brain is Possible, Would it Be Too Good to Refuse?

by Daniel Faggella

Controlling your feelings, adding or removing memories at will, and controlling our devices telepathically… is this purely the world of science fiction? Evidently not.

Full Story...



Don’t Know Mind: Zen and the Art of AGI Indecision

by Gareth John

By now I’ve clocked up a relatively comprehensive slew of reading up on Artificial General Intelligence, in particular concerning its ethical implications. Still mostly in the dark when it comes to any of the difficulties and scientific quandaries that go into creating such a machine, I am at least at a level of understanding whereby I can begin to tease out for myself some of the wider implications AGI would present for humankind.



Man’s Greatest Achievement: Nikola Tesla on Akashic Engineering and the Future of Humanity

by Giulio Prisco

The maverick genius Nikola Tesla was a Cosmist, a pre-transhumanist thinker, and an early proponent of a synthesis of Eastern mysticism and Western can-do engineering spirit. Tesla boldly dared to imagine “Akashic engineering” and Man’s “most complete triumph over the physical world, his crowning achievement which would place him beside his Creator and fulfill his ultimate destiny.”



#22: Time to Start Looking at ‘Cyborg’ as a Gender Identity

by B. J. Murphy

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on January 28, 2015, and is the #22 most viewed of the year.

Full Story...



#23: The Age of Transhumanist Politics Has Begun: Will It Change the Concepts of Left and Right?

by Roland Benedikter

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on April 27, 2015, and is the #23 most viewed of the year.

Full Story...



#25: Transhumanism - The Final Religion?

by Dirk Bruere

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on July 15, 2015, and is the #25 most viewed of the year.

Full Story...



#28: Posthumanisms: A Carnapian Experiment

by Daryl Wennemann

According to IEET readers, what were the most stimulating stories of 2015? This month we’re answering that question by posting a countdown of the top 30 articles published this year on our blog (out of more than 1,000), based on how many total hits each one received.

The following piece was first published here on March 19, 2015, and is the #28 most viewed of the year.

Full Story...

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