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



UPCOMING EVENTS: Virtuality

Siegel @ Indiecade
October 9-12
Culver City, CA USA


Siegel @ Science and Non-Duality
October 22-27
San Jose, CA USA




MULTIMEDIA: Virtuality Topics

The Singularity Is Near Movie Trailer

The Colbert Report /w Martine Rothblatt and BINA48

Back To The Future In The Metaverse

Bionic connections: Interfacing with the nervous system

IBM’s Nanofluidic Circuit

Forever Alone? Maybe Not: Technology and Loneliness

Neuromorphic Hardware - Better Tech Through Nature

Consciousness, Artificial Intelligence and Surveillance

Personhood Beyond the Human: Meet Bina48

Creating Games Like A Wizard With The Oculus Rift

Noam Chomsky On Artificial Intelligence , Cognitive Science , and Neuroscience

Stelarc Performs ‘Outside Your Skin’ - West Space

Narrow AI vs AGI

Could a Computer Ever Have Consciousness?

Cheating Death - Sun Exposure & Marijuana




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Virtuality Topics




Kristi Scott: Best and Worst

by Kristi Scott

Contributors to h+ magazine were invited to submit their choices for the best and the worst of the 2000-2009 decade.

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Changes and Trends, For Better or For Worse

by Mike Treder


In the year 2025, if man is still alive, if woman can survive, they may find…

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IEET Readers Pick Europe, With Outer Space Close Second

When asked in a recently concluded poll, where they would choose to live if they had to leave their current nation of residence, IEET readers made Europe their top choice, at 19%, but outer space was just behind, at 18%.

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Will Uploaded Minds in Machines be Alive?

by Martine Rothblatt

Mindclones—consciousness in post-biological media—will feel as full of life as we biological creatures.

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The Second Self through Second Life: Mask or Mirror?

by Kristi Scott

Kristi Scott has published her essay The Second Self through Second Life: Mask or Mirror? as part of the book The Real and the Virtual.

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Love, Virtually

by Mike Treder

As opposed to love, actually…

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Large Hadron Collider Working Again

IEET readers have weighed in with their opinions about why the LHC project kept running into seemingly endless delays on its way to running protons into each other. Now that it’s back up and operating, perhaps some of our more far-fetched conjectures will be proved wrong.

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I Can Has Singularity?

by Jamais Cascio

IBM’s new cat brain simulation is both more—and less—than it seems.

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Memory and Insanity

by Mike Treder

How much do we need to remember about our past to be considered sane? If we remembered too much, would that drive us crazy?

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Slim Majority of IEET Readers Want Life Recording

Slightly more than half of respondents to a recently concluded IEET poll said, “Yes,” they would like to have a recording of their whole life. About a third said, “No, thanks,” and 12% were not sure.

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What is Techno-Immortality?

by Martine Rothblatt

Cyberconsciousness implies techno-immortality.  Immortality means living forever.  This has never happened in the real world, so we think of immortality as a spiritual existence (as in heaven) or as a non-personal existence (as in ‘Bach’s music will live forever’).  With cyberconsciousness it will be possible, for the first time, for a person to live forever in the real world.  This unique, technologically empowered form of living forever is called techno-immortality.

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Life-recording: Are you game?

by Mike Treder

Assuming the technology was robust, reliable, non-intrusive, and affordable—would you want to record your whole life?

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Google’s Velvet Rope

by Doug Rushkoff

Rather than make its new telephone service available to the masses, Google Voice will be invitation only. Douglas Rushkoff asks if you block them, will they come?

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The Telepathic Communication Era

by Giulio Prisco

Many people, including me, are now used to being always online. With my smartphone powered by Google’s Android operating system, I am used to sending and receiving email and IMs anytime, from anywhere. It is easy to see how this trend will evolve: most routine computing applications will migrate to smartphones, the coverage and bandwidth of wireless networks will go up, and their price will go down. In only a few years, we will be used to being permanently plugged in the global Internet, and of course the user interfaces will improve. For example, as described by the visionary science fiction author Charlie Stross in his novel Halting State, augmented reality technology based on smart glasses will soon permit overcoming the limitations due to the small size of phones. A first generation of suitable smart glasses is already available, but there is something much better on the horizon: instant telepathic communication.

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Artificial Friends

by Mike Treder

DI/DO (Drop In, Drop Out) connotes a lifestyle consisting almost entirely of online activity, but in place of a focus on interaction with actual friends and family, the vast majority of time is spent engaging with artificial digital companions.

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Awareness Is Everything

by Jamais Cascio

As our various electronic devices gain more and more sensory awareness, we open up the potential for entirely new forms of interaction. Not just new interfaces—tapping and shaking and whatnot—but a shift in presence. With few exceptions, we use these new technologies in rather familiar ways. We might speak instead of type, or tap instead of click, or wave a control wand instead of mash a control pad, but these are essentially the same kinds of direct input processes we’ve done for years, just dressed up in a new look.

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In Praise of Bill Bainbridge’s “Religion for a Galactic Civilization 2.0”

by Giulio Prisco

One of my first impressions after reading Bill Bainbridge’s 1981 essay “Religions for a Galactic Civilization” was that it was dated (well, it was written 26 years ago). I wrote: “If Bill were to write the same article today, he would probably mention NBIC technologies (nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive sciences) besides space travel and colonization. I hope he would give less space to Scientology, and I am sure he would discuss the works of transhumanist thinkers in great detail. I think the first sentence quoted below could be written, today, as “We need a new transhumanist social movement capable of giving a sense of transcendent purpose to dominant sectors of the society””. I asked Bill to write a revised and updated version of the paper, to be published (translated into Italian) in the print journal Divenire of the Italian Transhumanist Association and then discussed at the TransVision 2010 conference. A first draft of the revised and updated version has just been posted to the IEET blog.

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Computational Eudaemonics: Expert Happiness Systems

by Marcelo Rinesi

This is an interview with Marko A. Rodriguez, a scientist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Besides doing basic research on applied mathematics and computer science, he is doing work on computational eudaemonics — the use of computer algorithms to increase happiness by helping us make better decisions, even suggesting new options.

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Can Consciousness be Created in Software?

by Martine Rothblatt

“Some men see things as they are and wonder why.  Others dream things that never were and ask why not?” Robert F. Kennedy

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Cheating Darwin: The Genetic and Ethical Implications of Vanity and Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

by Kristi Scott

If mating is partly about choosing half the genome of your children, do your potential partners in parenting have an obligation to disclose that they have had so much “work” done on their face and body that they now look nothing like their original phenotype? Will cosmetics and plastic surgery blunt the selection of more beautiful women via sexual selection?

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The Dark Side of Twittering a Revolution

by Jamais Cascio

The same technologies that have allowed for a potential democratic revolution in Iran could emerge just as readily in support of something far more sinister.

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How Iran’s Hackers Killed Big Brother

by Doug Rushkoff

Tehran’s streets may be bloody, says Douglas Rushkoff, but the opposition has won the digital war. The battleground: Facebook and Twitter. The weapons: bandwidth and hacking. The prize: the end of totalitarianism.

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Interpretive Dance of the Transhumanist Future

by Natasha Vita-More

A response to Athena Andreadis’ ”“If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want to Be Part of Your Revolution!”

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Welcome to the Machine, Part 5: Simulation taxonomy

by George Dvorsky

As shocking as the Simulation Argument is, it’s (arguably) a revelation that’s no less shocking than previous existential paradigm shifts. While undoubtedly disturbing to the people alive at the time, previous civilizations have come to grips with the knowledge that they do not live on a flat Earth nor at the center of the Universe.

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Why Worry About This Sci-Fi Stuff Now?

by Martine Rothblatt

The term “mindclone” evokes a wide range of sci-fi images from the “Cylons” of Battlestar Galactica to the “Mr. Smiths” of The Matrix.  While it is indisputable that we are creating large mindfiles, as described in Question 1, and surely there are geeks working hard on mindware, as reviewed in Question 2, how close could we be to an actual mindclone when computers can’t converse on their own much better than a two-year old kid?

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If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want to Be Part of Your Revolution!

by Athena Andreadis

(incorrectly but fittingly ascribed to Emma Goldman, feminist, activist, trouble-maker)

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What Are Mindclones?

by Martine Rothblatt

A mindclone is a software version of your mind.  He or she is all of your thoughts, recollections, feelings, beliefs, attitudes and values, and is experiencing reality from the standpoint of whatever machine their mindware is running on.  Mindclones are mindfiles being used and updated by mindware that has been set to be a functionally equivalent replica of one’s mind.  A mindclone is your software-based alter ego, doppelganger, or mental twin.  If your body died, but you had a mindclone, you would not feel that you personally died, although the body would be missed more sorely than amputees miss their limbs.

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Doug Rushkoff’s New Radio Show and NPR TV Series

IEET Fellow Doug Rushkoff has a new radio show, the Media Squat, and a new series on Frontline, Digital Nation.

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Social Networking and the Brain: Continuous Partial Empathy?

by Jamais Cascio

Human beings are social animals; we devote a significant portion of our brain just to dealing with interactions with other humans. It should come as no surprise, then, that social Web technologies have a complex relationship with brain function. When these platforms work in concert with our social brains, they can enable persistent relationships or provide emotional/social augmentation. When social web technologies clash with brain function, however, the results can be surprising.

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Welcome to the Machine, Part 4: Kurzweil’s nano neural nets

by George Dvorsky

As previously noted in this series, our entire world may be simulated. For all we know we’re sitting on a powerful supercomputer somewhere, the mere playthings of posthuman intelligences. But this is not the only possibility. There’s another way that this kind of fully immersive ‘reality’ could be realized—one that doesn’t require the simulation of an entire world. Indeed, it’s quite possible that your life is not what it seems—that what you think of as reality is actually an illusion of the senses. You could be experiencing a completely immersive and totally convincing virtual reality right now and you don’t even know it.

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