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   Author  Topic: Immortality?  (Read 11616 times)
Cassidy McGurk
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #45 on: 2009-05-25 19:08:07 »
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This will fix it

http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/download
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Walter Watts
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #46 on: 2009-05-25 21:11:36 »
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Note the fifth from the last paragraph in the article I posted one post back.

Eli made it into the New York Times!

The end-times ARE near!


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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #47 on: 2009-05-25 23:48:36 »
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Quote from: Tas6 on 2009-05-25 16:05:24   

[Tas 6] One of the links given on this particular posting gave my Laptop a Virus that has incapacitated it until I have time to get it repaired. 
I'm sorry you are still running windows and having trouble with viruses, but I repeat myself. I followed the linx and saw nothing, but I run Firefox under Linux so I might not have seen whatever gave you a problem. Do you know which link it was so that I can change it or add a warning?


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With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion. - Steven Weinberg, 1999
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #48 on: 2009-05-29 13:41:42 »
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No sorry I do not remember which one it was, it happened right before I left for vacation. I do appreciate the help though. All I recall was that it was the second initial links given in the very beginning.

Vacation was wonderful though, camping in a Yurt. It gave me much time to consider and contemplate this Topic of Immortality (which was one of my reasons for taking  a vacation/retreat.
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #49 on: 2009-06-27 23:24:08 »
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I was thinking, if we are trying to create working Memes for inoculation  , should one then reject the study of Myths that have proven themselves as potent carriers of memetic-viruses? I am am not suggesting adopting but rather careful examination for use in the creation of "Reason" myths/memes (Power of Myth)? Just an idea I have been thinking about.

Reva ,
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #50 on: 2009-06-28 11:49:56 »
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Quote from: Tas6 on 2009-06-27 23:24:08   

I was thinking, if we are trying to create working Memes for inoculation  , should one then reject the study of Myths that have proven themselves as potent carriers of memetic-viruses? I am am not suggesting adopting but rather careful examination for use in the creation of "Reason" myths/memes (Power of Myth)? Just an idea I have been thinking about.

The study of myths can certainly be useful when crafting new memes. Did anyone suggest otherwise?
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #51 on: 2009-07-01 15:52:15 »
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I haven't noticed if it was ever mentioned and after Mo's and Hermit's comment on some of my previous posts on the ON mythos and my view of it (which after speaking to many in the modern movement, such a Dr. T. Little, PhD Anthropology Prof. CCAD and showing my article to her and many others, who validated from an interperative perspective my possible view), well let's just say I had my doubts...
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Social considerations "free" immortality?
« Reply #52 on: 2009-11-07 02:38:45 »
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Firstly, the genetic and nano-machines ways to immortality has been pointed out already.
Here's a possible solution to the social aspects to it.

Suppose each individual is given a "free" biological lifetime of, say, 200 years. While the individual lives, nano-machines are being integrated into the biological body with the main purpose of mapping the nervous system of the human into computing chips. In this way, we would live a sort of "double-life": one in purely biological way, and the other given by the interaction of already mapped neurons with the digital, "virtual" world that the computing power gives us.

During the lifetime of the individual all of his subjective experience of the world is gradually shifted to this technological immortality. If we manage to map those neurons, and the information they carry around in small enough slices of time, the whole consciousness and subconsciousness of the individual could be relocated entirely on chips (or the equivalent computing unit of the future). So, after a long (or not) live, one could simply cease to exist biologicaly at a given time and begin a new life on a computer system without even noticing (transport without pain or any kind of feel).

If we suppose that the computer technology continues it's trends (and Moore's law is still correct) it will be more efficient to "live" in a simulated environment using less resources (and still enjoying greater computing power than the body you had).

Next comes some crafty laws: You can afford to have influence on the outside world if you, somehow, contribute to common good, or if you simply pay for it, and if you don't there will always be the option of hibernation on simple "hard-drives".
In other words, if you can pay for computing power, you live in the virtual world and you are allowed to influence the real world ("Insert next coin to continue" sort of speak  )

Policies could be made to limit the biological lifespan (leaving more than enough space for good old fashioned evolution). After you enter the cyber realm (which would be gradual throughout your normal lifespan), you buy computing power to support your own system, allocating more resources to those who are successful.

Technically, you could be considered dead, but one could argue that the old body is merely dead. Your conscience could be transported to another, without "you" taking a notice at all... You would've entered another life cycle, just as a cocoon transforms into a butterfly...

One could also marvel at the technical capabilities you get when entering cyberspace... Just imagine solving differential equations in a milisecond and being able to control robots just as good as your old body (if not better).

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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #53 on: 2011-02-04 15:40:56 »
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Zinnia Jones' recent video on this subject
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ea5J1Dw8648


http://zinniajones.com/blog/transcripts/the-pursuit-of-technological-immortality/
The pursuit of technological immortality

There have been a few times when I've suggested that an indefinite lifespan could be possible through technological development, and moreover, that this is something worth pursuing. To be clear, this is not at all reliant upon magic, any concept of an afterlife, or the existence of supernatural phenomena. It's fully within the realm of the natural world - it just means rearranging the structure of matter so as to create a more stable and resilient embodiment of our consciousness.

This is obviously quite an oversimplification, but that's the basic idea behind it, and there's no apparent reason why it shouldn't be possible. Configurations of matter within the natural world are already known to support consciousness, and this could potentially be altered and extended in a variety of ways. But while some people believe that this either can't be accomplished or won't be achieved within the foreseeable future, others go even further and claim that it shouldn't be done.

It doesn't seem like it should be so controversial. Most people don't look forward to dying, and they don't usually like it when their loved ones die, either. We already make use of technology to push back death further and further - is it really that different to ensure that it's no longer inevitable? It does mean removing something that, for all of history, has been a constant: the mandatory and involuntary end of life. Clearly, some people might be taken aback by that. But should it really be considered so objectionable?

Some have said that if nobody dies, it would lead to further problems with overpopulation. But overpopulation is already an issue, and yet we aren't demanding that anyone should have to die. If people shouldn't be allowed to live indefinitely, how long should they be allowed to live for? What would be the upper limit here? If effective immortality is possible, then insisting that it not be pursued for this reason means literally preferring for people to die when they otherwise wouldn't have to, because the problem of overpopulation is just too challenging to bother solving. I don't see how that's an acceptable tradeoff, and the progress that accompanies the eradication of death might end up making this a non-issue.

Others have claimed that the end of life is necessary to give meaning to life, suggesting that life is only important to us because it lasts for a limited time. But that's hardly a universal fact of life. The meaning that we find in our lives is something that we each have to establish for ourselves. Not everyone requires the inevitability of death in order to give their lives meaning. For many of us, life itself is what gives meaning to our lives. The many experiences we have in life can be so enjoyable that we pursue them for their own sake, without needing the threat of death hanging over our heads. For us, it doesn't represent a motivation, but rather the end of everything that we find beautiful and amazing in our lives.

It seems likely that people have only tried to find good things about death because, thus far, it's been unavoidable. Even in the most regrettable of circumstances, the unwilling destruction of a human mind, we still try to see something positive in it. But if death were something that simply never happened, would the benefits of it be so compelling that we would collectively decide for everyone's life to be cut short of its maximum potential?

If people do need death to give their lives meaning, that option should be available to them. Nobody should be forced to live forever. But nobody should be forced to die when they don't have to, either. Given the choice, I'm not willing to die just because it might give meaning to my life. Nor do I expect anyone else to die in order to give my life meaning. And nobody has any right to expect that from me. If it comes down to a choice between the death of everyone ever merely for the sake of finding purpose in life, or giving everyone the chance to live forever and having to find meaning on our own, I know what side I'm on. Do you?
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Re:Immortality?
« Reply #54 on: 2011-02-06 16:15:36 »
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Zinnia Jones follows up on responses to previous video.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Km0Au3Mmvtg


http://zinniajones.com/blog/transcripts/why-not-immortality/
Why not immortality?

After my last video about the potential use of technology to ensure human immortality, there were some people who offered their views on why this might not be such a good idea.

A few of them pointed out that literal immortality may not actually be possible, and for reasons of cosmology, thermodynamics, and so on, we would never really get to live forever. And that might be so. But does it mean we shouldn't even try? Even if we can't live forever, we could live for a much longer time. If that's not worth pursuing because we'll still have to die eventually, then why don't we all just kill ourselves right now? We may not be able to eliminate all potential causes of death, but we might be able to eliminate some, possibly even many. This is something that we've always tried to do. Isn't that still worth working towards?

Others claimed that wanting to avoid death is somehow just like religion. Really? How is it like religion? Just because a belief system that's rooted in mythology happens to incorporate an entirely fictional kind of immortality, it doesn't mean the very notion of it is irrevocably tainted. Simply not wanting to die isn't something that must be inherently entangled with religion, and in this case, religion plays no part whatsoever. This is a response to having confronted the natural world as it is.

I know that when I die, it is not a recoverable state. I know that when other people die, they are not being kept in a holding area in the upper atmosphere or the core of the earth waiting to be reunited with me. Death is real and permanent. And once we recognize this, the question is: what are we going to do about it? There are no saviors here. There is no eternal life after we die. There is only our own ingenuity, and the hope of applying our skills within the confines of the natural world to find a real solution to death. Magic is not science, and faith is not an answer.

Some have said that even if immortality was possible, only the wealthy would have access to it, and everyone else would be left out. And while that's certainly not the best outcome, this doesn't seem like a reason not to make an effort anyway. Every new technological development comes with issues of it not being available to everyone. Does that mean there should be a moratorium on new technology until everyone has equal access?

We don't usually respond to this by denying the fruits of technology to anyone, just because everyone doesn't have it yet. Instead, we do our best to make it available to as many people as possible, including the less well-off. If we were to refrain from any technological development just because it wouldn't be accessible to everyone at first, many people would be much worse off than they are now.

Others said that if people no longer die, then biological evolution would cease to take place among humans. First of all, we don't know if this would actually happen. People who live forever might still have offspring. But even if this is the result of immortality, is that a problem? Is there any particular reason that the evolution of humans has to continue in this way? Is the ongoing progress of evolution some kind of moral imperative that we're beholden to?

Just because it happens naturally doesn't mean we're in any way obligated to ensure that it continues. And insofar as evolution works to produce organisms that are better adapted to survive in their environment, keeping people from dying would go a long way towards achieving that. We've already found ways of making sure that people don't die when they otherwise would have, as well as ways for people to reproduce when they otherwise couldn't. Our minds are just as much a product of evolution as anything else. Are we not supposed to put them to use in this manner?

Some people claimed that anyone seeking immortality is just afraid of dying - with the implication that we shouldn't be. But why not? While it's certainly not helpful to suffer from crippling anxiety about mortality while it's still limiting the time we have to enjoy life, why shouldn't we want to avoid death nonetheless?

Believe it or not, there are actually a lot of people who don't want to die. I hadn't expected that this would be a point of contention, considering that people generally do try not to die. Is it really that hard to believe that many of us do enjoy our lives, and would like to be able to continue enjoying life for as long as possible? And if it's possible for us not to die, why would there be anything wrong with that? If you yourself don't actually fear death, then that's your perspective, and you're certainly entitled to it. But this isn't generalizable to the class of all humans.

Others claimed that wanting to live indefinitely is somehow selfish. But is it selfish to simply not want to die when you potentially wouldn't even have to? Should we be restricted to a fixed allotment of time, as if anything beyond that means taking more than our fair share? This doesn't have to be zero-sum. We could all live longer - potentially much longer - without it taking anything away from others. And even if you still think it is "selfish", this doesn't mean anyone should have to die when they otherwise wouldn't need to, just for being selfish.

Some people brought up the possibility that social progress would be slowed or halted when older generations no longer die off, because they would be less likely to change their views over time. And while that might be an issue, there are probably better ways of addressing this than requiring death. The greater ease of social change is often considered a positive side effect of older people dying, but if they were never going to die, this may not be a sufficiently compelling reason to force them to.

There are other tactics available that could be tried first, like persuasion. But even if some of them can't be persuaded to agree with you, does that mean they should then have to die? Killing people who disagree with you is indeed a method of bringing about social change. But most of us tend to frown on that. If our current optimum solution to this requires for people to die, I'm not sure we've brought our best efforts to bear on the problem.

Finally, many people insisted that overpopulation would still be an issue. For the sake of brevity, I addressed this in my last video by handwaving it away. My real answer is: I don't know. And that's the best answer I have right now, because I'm one person who is certainly not the smartest person in the world, and at present, there already aren't too many good options for dealing with this. When people suggest a reduction in the global birth rate, this is usually received poorly and considered somewhat totalitarian. Intentionally killing off a significant portion of the population, even moreso. And doing nothing about the problem is just negligent.

So in all honesty, I probably won't be able to offer a solution here. And when it comes to something like technological immortality, I especially don't know how it's going to end up. I can't tell you what kind of changes will bring about the eradication of death, nor do I know how this will specifically affect things like reproduction, resource consumption, the kinds of environments that will be habitable for us, and so on. There are too many unknowns here to articulate a fully developed answer yet.

I could tell you that we'll all move to outer space, or the oceans, or we'll all shrink ourselves, or upload our minds to computers. Or maybe there will just be medical therapies that prevent aging and all other diseases while changing nothing else. But I don't know that, so it's hard to work out how the effects of this should be dealt with.

The problem with citing overpopulation as an objection to immortality is that it means preemptively concluding that this is a problem that can't be dealt with, even given an indefinite lifespan to work on it. And we certainly don't know that, either. What I do know is that these are not reasons to avoid trying at all, nor are they sufficient to mandate death for every person ever when this could have been avoided. Wouldn't it be better to work towards immortality and the possibility that this is something we can learn to live with, instead of never having the chance to find out?
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