Vision > Contributors > Jonathan Lin > HealthLongevity
Jonathan Lin
Hand Written Letters in the Digital Age by Jonathan Lin

Hannah Brencher is a letter-enthusiast. She runs The World Needs More Love Letters, a letter exchange dedicated to connecting strangers across the globe through the art of letter writing. I discovered Brencher by browsing through online TED talks for November 2012, and noted her popular talk in the “less than 6 minutes” category. In her presentation she traced her own love of pen and paper as a means of personal expression and salvation, where letter writing guaranteed constant communication with her mother and helped Brencher fi...

Rights > HealthLongevity > GlobalDemocracySecurity > Directors > George Dvorsky > Fellows > FreeThought > Patrick Lin > Military
George Dvorsky
How modern technologies made the fighting in Gaza even worse by George Dvorsky

As the conflict between Israel and Hamas extends into its second week, it has become quite clear that the renewed hostilities are markedly different that that ones that came before. Unlike previous engagements, this war has been characterized by the innovative use of new technologies — including rockets that target rockets, unmanned drones, and even social media. Given these early precedents, it’s fair to say that the means of war have changed yet again — but in a way that’s certainly not for the better.

Vision > Directors > Giulio Prisco > HealthLongevity
Giulio Prisco
Is consciousness a quantum mystery? by Giulio Prisco

“According to Hameroff, our souls are built of something much more fundamental than neurons,” says Morgan Freeman introducing Hameroff’s quantum consciousness theory in a recent episode of Through the Wormhole. “They are constructed from the very fabric of the universe.” Dr. Hameroff claims, “I believe that consciousness, or its immediate precursor proto-consciousness, has been in the universe all along, perhaps from the Big Bang.”

Rights > CognitiveLiberty > FreeThought > Personhood > Vision > Contributors > Jønathan Lyons
Jønathan Lyons
Was Helen O’Loy a person, or merely a thing? by Jønathan Lyons

I teach a course in science fiction and bleeding-edge science fact; it started as a course in science fiction, but then I noticed how much sci-fi was becoming real, if sometimes weird, science. One story I started out teaching is the Lester del Rey classic Helen O’Loy. Published in 1938, del Rey’s narrator, Phil, and his housemate, Dave, tinker with what’s described as a standard housework android, modifying and upgrading zir abilities until ze becomes a she — a self-aware artificial life form — at least, as far as we c...

GlobalDemocracySecurity > Vision > Technoprogressivism > Military
Killer Robots Democracy Now!

“Nobel Peace laureate Jody Williams is joining with Human Rights Watch to oppose the creation of killer robots — fully autonomous weapons that could select and engage targets without human intervention. In a new report, HRW warns such weapons would undermine the safety of civilians in armed conflict; violate international humanitarian law; and blur the lines of accountability for war crimes. Fully autonomous weapons do not exist yet, but high-tech militaries are moving in that direction with the United States taking the lead. William...

Rights > Vision > Virtuality > PostGender
Women’s Portrayal in the Virtual World School of Communication

Jesse Fox analyses the representation of women in virtual reality. She does not see women being represented as avatars on the Internet or in video games in a positive progressive manner.

She wrote an excellent essay: “Avatars: Portraying, Exploring, and Changing Online and Offline Identities” that can be found in the book “Handbook of Research on Technoself: Identity in a Technological Society” or bought online Here

Abstract: “Avatars are defined as virtual representations that are controlled by a human user. Commo...

Vision > Contributors > HealthLongevity > Dick Pelletier > Futurism
Dick Pelletier
Thanksgiving 2042: ‘Turkey Day’ in a future wonderworld by Dick Pelletier

Of course, no one can predict with 100% accuracy how the future will unfold, but by combining present day knowledge with anticipated advances, we can make plausible guesses about what to expect in 2042.

Vision > Bioculture > Staff > Marcelo Rinesi
Marcelo Rinesi
Death by (lack of a) drugs (culture) by Marcelo Rinesi

A recent report from the Los Angeles Times underscored what amounts to an epidemic of deaths in the US caused at least in part by overdoses of legally prescribed drugs. The root problem, though, is one of cultural technology rather than chemistry or regulation.

HealthLongevity > Innovation
How to “sketch” with electronics TED

“Electronics aren’t just for experts and engineers. Kids and amateurs should be able to play, too, which is why Leah Buechley designs little paper-based electronics for “sketching” and interactive electronic fashion for tinkering. Buechley designs and creates electronic textiles, or e-textiles, like this jacket that can signal which way you’re turning on your bike. She’s an assistant professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the MIT Media Lab, where she also directs the High-Low Tech research group.” -...

GlobalDemocracySecurity > Vision > Bioculture > HealthLongevity > Innovation > Eco-gov
David Keith’s unusual climate change idea TED

“Environmental scientist David Keith talks about a cheap, effective, shocking solution to climate change: What if we injected a huge cloud of particles into the atmosphere, to deflect sunlight and heat? As an emergency measure to slow a melting ice cap, it could work. Keith discusses why geo-engineering like this is a good idea, why it’s a terrible one — and who, despite the cost, might be tempted to use it. (Recorded September 2007 in New York City. Duration: 16:04.)”