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Future Imperative

What if technology were being developed that could enhance your mind or body to extraordinary or even superhuman levels -- and some of these tools were already here? Wouldn't you be curious?

Actually, some are here. But human enhancement is an incredibly broad and compartmentalized field. We’re often unaware of what’s right next door. This site reviews resources and ideas from across the field and makes it easy for readers to find exactly the information they're most interested in.

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The future is coming fast, and it's no longer possible to ignore how rapidly the world is changing. As the old order changes -- or more frequently crumbles altogether -- I offer a perspective on how we can transform ourselves in turn... for the better. Nothing on this site is intended as legal, financial or medical advice. Indeed, much of what I discuss amounts to possibilities rather than certainties, in an ever-changing present and an ever-uncertain future.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Man into Supermouse -- Some Reservations Regarding Incipient "Immortality" -- Bio, Long

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I've heard a few objections to the idea of extending humanity's youth and lifespan, even if there were no health drawbacks, based on social concerns. For example, what happens when we have all of these retirees? Though the point of this blog isn't to handle political issues -- merely to help people be more informed about enhancement options -- from a social viewpoint, it's worthwhile to consider some options. So here is my reply...

"Ah, but if the onset of aging and age-related deterioration is delayed, doesn't that save us from having to pay for the tons of medical care people need by their 50s... and especially their 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond? Remember, if your youth has been extended by 30%, by the time you turn 40, you'll look and feel just over 30. By the time you hit 80, you'll look and feel just over 60.

"That's a pretty big boost to your overall health -- especially coming from just one breakthrough. Which means that this form of longevity could help us deal with the enormous costs of dealing with an elderly population (costs we already have to deal with).

"Are there issues regarding what people will do for the rest of their lives? Sure, add a couple of decades -- especially a couple of productive decades in which people are at the "height of their powers" -- and yes, there will be some issues. But consider, most people who enjoy their jobs and careers if anything tend to want to stay at them longer. Which is why you see lots of older doctors, musicians, CEOs, lawyers, small business owners, political leaders, inventors, artists and scientists still laboring away, even after some of them have really "lost it." They enjoy what they do.

"So yes, one of the challenges we'll face is getting people into work they love. Other people will retire, but may find they can still contribute to society in other ways -- volunteer work, advising people in their old field, lending a hand in the management of business startups, doing art, writing short stories, taking photos or writing articles for a local paper, etc. There's plenty of part time work out there for people who have or develop the requisite skills.

"There may still be other problems, but honestly, who here would prefer the problems of youth and good health to those of degeneration, illness and untimely death?"

Future Imperative

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