By Jay Cornell
Transhumanism is a world circulation that advocates using technology and know-how to beat the "natural" barriers skilled via humanity via such advancements as:
- the Singularity--the production of laptop intelligences that exceed the capacities of our organic brains
- the skill to duplicate person minds and positioned them into solid-state our bodies or digital environments
- individual keep watch over over psychological and emotional states for reinforcing functionalities and/or ecstasies
Some of this can be occurring now. a few of it truly is nonetheless within the minds of dreamers.
In approximately 90 A-Z entries, Transcendence presents a multilayered examine the accelerating advances in synthetic intelligence, cognitive technological know-how, genomics, details know-how, nanotechnology, neuroscience, house exploration, artificial biology, robotics, and digital worlds which are making transhumanism a fact. Entries diversity from Cloning and Cyborg Feminism to fashion designer infants and Memory-Editing medicinal drugs. furthermore, the booklet notes historic predecessors and personalities, either in mythology and history--ranging from Timothy Leary to Michael Jackson to Ray Kurzweil. It additionally introduces the tradition round Transhumanism, overlaying the entire geeky obsessions of the Transhumanist circulate.
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Extra resources for Transcendence: The Disinformation Encyclopedia of Transhumanism and the Singularity
Transhumanism is noticeable as a sort of “scientism”—a dogma that empirical technological know-how is the main authoritative worldview, and that in basic terms measurable wisdom is effective. hence, transhumanism is one of those idolatry and extra “false strong news,” a utopian stream attempting to immanentize the eschaton (create heaven on earth). Conquering dying and growing utopia can't ensue via technological ability, they are saying, yet purely via God. moreover, God doesn’t get pleasure from the makes an attempt at pageant. There are comparable assaults from the secular left: transhumanism is obvious as “atomized individualism,” strength fantasies, and as an expression of contempt for the flesh. Feminists may even see extensions of bad cultural obsessions with early life and wonder. a few think of organic improvements as trivializing human id, or see an “ableist bias” in even pondering by way of “improvements” or overcoming psychological or actual “limitations. ” CRITICISMS OF TRANSHUMANISM Transcendence_forthpages. indd fifty seven fifty seven 10/28/14 1:14 PM P O I N T S TA ok E N , B U T . . . For a few, attainable hazards will consistently trump attainable advantages, and assuaging latest poverty or inequality will constantly take priority over an development that might gain basically the quite prosperous (at least at first). after all, taken to its logical severe, these perspectives may cease so much technological developments, simply because all of them have a few hazards and detrimental unwanted effects. the wealthy or the fortunate few continually gain first, so forms of inequality will briefly raise. in addition to, being first isn’t regularly most sensible. think about these state-of-the-art LED watches that rate countless numbers or hundreds of thousands of bucks within the early ’70s. that cash helped finance the more affordable and extra complicated electronic expertise that got here later, and all these wealthy humans received used to be a number of years of taking a look trendy, and so they needed to press a button to determine the time. As we observed with thalidomide and metal-on-metal hip implants, being an early adopter could be dicy. So maybe we should always now not fear in regards to the wealthy financing transhumanist biotech. They’ll be the 1st guinea pigs, and you may get it whilst it’s more affordable, larger, and more secure. If humanity had continuously considered expertise in the course of the lenses of the precautionary precept and equivalent entry, we’d nonetheless be arguing even if to permit this invention known as “fire. ” fifty eight Transcendence_forthpages. indd fifty eight TRANSCENDENCE 10/28/14 1:14 PM CRYONICS The include of cryonic upkeep could be the factor that almost all separates “the males from the men” (pardon my genderism) by way of how heavily you’ll be taken via hardcore transhumanists. such a lot significant transhumanist figures are signed up. Cryonics, in fact, is using low temperature to maintain our bodies after loss of life (or as former cryonics fanatic Timothy Leary most well liked to name it, “reversible metabolic coma”) for his or her eventual resuscitation. It is available in forms—whole physique or head. the assumption is that the character is preserved in mind constitution and that if you happen to can freeze it speedy sufficient, destiny technology are able to convey again a similar individual along with his or her stories preserved.