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Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Animekitty, Sep 22, 2010.
Salvation of mankind (not that we needed it except because of our own idiocy, now we need this to save ourselves, yes.)
You also need to understand; we've been undergoing transhumanism for quite a long time now (from the first tool to the iphone.) Just because these devices are not INSIDE our bodies yet doesn't mean they aren't a PART of us and our personal development
So you disagree with Tom Horn like I do. I wonder how many will agree with him?
I am a big fan of Transhumanism and I am excited to see what happens. I believe external AI is a much larger threat than any sort of self-enhancement. The question isn't a matter of how or what, but rather when. I speak in terms of direct neural integration, which is already happening. The threat of AI seems like something out of a movie but we don't realize just how exponential the growth of intelligence and technology are becoming. Robots are already out there that learn how to walk as soon as it is first turned on. Neural network reproductions in logical circuitry are starting to pick up speed. The brain is the absolute key to enhancement. Once we can interface completely and understand a good amount, we will really start doing some amazing things. Neurons and circuits Even non-intrusive stimuli provide some outstanding results. http://abcnews.go.com/Primetime/story?id=2401551&page=1 As other have stated, we have been at this for a long time. It is a natural progression. We have been using tools as enhancements for a long time, just now they are starting to freak out since enhancements are interfacing with components of the body some people don't understand. Why not freak out at vaccinations or medicine? Aren't those just as 'unnatural' as other technologies? If we were supposed to stay 'natural' then you better throw your damn eyeglasses or contacts away by principle, along with pretty much all other technology. Actually, if someone is going to start preaching fundamentalism, then they better start living like a fundamentalist, that includes no computers; they aint 'natural.'
Sounds like it; I'm with kurzweil on this one. Technological advancement is itself advancing, and is very near the point where raw human intellect cannot keep up... either we have to reach some kind of technological plateau where no further advancement is possible or allowed, or we 'improve' ourselves in order to keep pace... or potentially get wiped out and leave our technology behind to fend for its own future.
Actually; past transhumanism led us to the cliff we're falling over right now (as a specie, and taking most other species with us over the edge.) So you could say it's apocalyptic... so much so that it'll take further and better transhumanism to fix it! (at least for a while.)
I have no worries. If technology doesn't rise up and destroy us, we as a society will find some other way to commit global suicide.
could be, could be... then again, I still think we have a chance to outlive the universe itself, if we play our cards right (at at least we now have some idea what and where the cards are.)
Overpopulation could be just as much to blame.
Technological Rich nations have an underpopulation problem. Japan is dying of old age and low birth rate. Bringing technology to the poor nations will solve overpopulation.
'just as much' yes, but become as a result of a mis-match between our advancement in transhumanism and our advancement in personal responsibility... one vastly outpaces the other, and as a result, we have 4.5 earths worth of population (measured at an american level of resource consumption, that is.) If our responsibility matched our technological prowess, we'd have capped at maybe .6 or .75 billion or thereabouts. Just because we're maintaining nearly 7 billion now does not mean we can't continue to do so (or for very long at all.) The next hundred years will probably see us back down to .5billion or so (unless a whole new level of transhumanism interferes the the current population.vs.resource.vs.technology equation as it stands now.)
Yes and no... I mean, you're right, but I believe you've left out step 2: introduce better technology??????profit! Where step 2 is 'grant everyone a much higher quality of life' ... it is that that typically has led to a 'relaxation' of overbreeding; someone said it best (wish I knew who): Expectation of prosperous life is the best contraceptive.
I found this to be a great overview of overpopulation. http://www.slideshare.net/Nicoleta01/overpopulation-2674689 According to that, the industrial revolution was far more detrimental when combined with overpopulation than now, as you said, technology is seeking to fix its past mistakes.
Oh definitely... for example, there's enough solar energy and wind energy penetrating the atmosphere (or whipping through it, in that order) to power many times the earth's current energy needs... and do so with far less detrimental impact than divulging enormous sums of previously sequestered hydrocarbons into said same atmosphere (thus notably changing not only its composition, but the oceans' as well.) Furthermore, new techniques in desalinization and new places to produce food (skyscraper farms) can aide in getting essentials to populations without decimating quite so much of the ecostructure we rely on even as we destroy it. But... We do not yet know how to eat rock (other than salt.) Unless transhumanism can help us consume basic elements, there is an ultimate cap as to how many people can exist on earth, and if we start taking any more than half the biomass of the earth (we're doing far worse than that right now), what remains cannot regenerate at a pace sufficient to keep up with our demands (i.e., we're burning the candle at both ends.) Population, regardless of technology, must be relaxed significantly. It would be nice if people would just recognize this fact and voluntarily (and with good cheer) pro-actively have just one child for a few generations... but when have people ever been truly reasonable? =P Space exploration may be our only way out without fundamentally having to change who we are (and even that WILL fundamentally change who we are, whether we believe it yet or not.) Heeeee, sorry... favourite topics of mine all wrapped into one.
I think machinery will definitely start to adapt to be more accepting of biochemical fuels as time progresses. As for fueling ourselves, I don't know much about biochem but I would figure we have to be somewhat close to creating some sort of easily sustainable synthetic biomass. Actually, I suppose that would count as creating new life. I am too ignorant to really have any comprehension of where we are in terms of this. Perhaps someday the same thing will both fuel our machinery and ourselves although currently one is meant to burn at a much higher rate. I wouldn't think it necessarily needs to though, our current enginering just makes it that way through pretty inefficient means. If we could come close to isolating ourselves from the external environment in terms of fuel needs both mechanically and through consumption, well that might just be the biggest breakthrough we see for a long time.
Aaaactually... all that once-was-life-slime-from-under-ground that we released into the air and water... it's edible (unlike rock.) I wouldn't be entirely surprised if we started mining the air and water for all those liberated hydrocarbons as a means to growth of new crops (i mean, a corn plant cannot be grown from anything except biomass, and oil and coal are both biomass.) This will still change the equation of life on earth dramatically... but at least not in quite so dirty a way... it'll just mean that more of the earths biomass is back in play than has been the case for the last hundred million years or so.
I don't own and refuse to own a cell phone...
I thought crops could be grown hydroponically without any need for biomass, just water, grow medium (which can be non biomass), CO2, and light.