Tuesday, October 16, 2012
What we call the news is really just the fractal repetitions of the human condition, the follies and triumphs that are experienced by individuals, communities, cities, states, nations, empires, each at its own scale. Those who are closely touched by these matters must for better and for worse attend to them to the appropriate degree. But our own affairs are just that; most of the time what the news tells about the affairs of others has very little to do with them, and our interest is the interest of the voyeur. In the midst of the flow of events, I am not aware of anyone who has a consistent ability to pick out and highlight those relatively few things that will have enduring or widespread significance. Time does that for us. If we wanted to be serious about “current events,” then nothing would be covered until after it had had a chance to age; we would want our news to be our olds.
What does this point have to do with transhumanism? We’ve noted before in this blog how transhumanism is in many respects a manifestation of some of our more problematic cultural characteristics. If our fascination with the news is unhealthy, then transhumanism shares that ailment, with its love of the new, the novel, whatever appears disruptive. It routinely confuses the latest with the greatest, and mistakes speedy communication of information for knowledge. Like the news, it is subject to thinking that something is important because it is happening right now, under our noses, making its allegedly long view remarkably short-sighted.
Posted by Charles T. Rubin at 1:43 PM
Charles T. Rubin, New Atlantis contributing editor.
Adam Keiper, New Atlantis editor.
Ari N. Schulman, New Atlantis senior editor.
Brendan Foht, New Atlantis assistant editor.
Mark Gubrud, Futurisms contributor.
by Charles T. Rubin
- Machine Morality and Human Responsibility
- Beyond Mankind
- Why Be Human?
- Our Bodies, Ourselves
- The Rhetoric of Extinction
- Man or Machine?
- Artificial Intelligence and Human Nature
by Adam Keiper
by Adam Keiper and Ari N. Schulman
by Ari N. Schulman
by Mark Gubrud
by other authors
- Humanism and Transhumanism (Fred Baumann)
- The Trouble with the Turing Test (Mark Halpern)
- Disenchanting Determinism (Caitrin Nicol)
- The Anti-Theology of the Body (David B. Hart)
- Ageless Bodies, Happy Souls (Leon R. Kass)
- Transitional Humanity (Gilbert Meilaender)
- Till Malfunction Do Us Part (Caitrin Nicol)
- Methuselah and Us (Diana Schaub)
"There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom" 1984 2001 30 Rock Aaron Saenz Abraham Lincoln academia addiction Adventures of Huckleberry Finn advertising aesthetics Agnes Heller AI AirLand Battle AirSea Battle Al Jazeera Alan Jacobs Alan Rubenstein Alasdair MacIntyre Alcor Aldous Huxley Alex Backer Alex Knapp aliens Allen Buchanan Alta Charo Amy Gutmann Ana Maria Cuervo Anders Sandberg Andrew Hessel animal uplift Anna Salamon anti-progress Apple argument from inevitability argument from infallibility Ari N. Schulman Aristotle arms control art Arthur C. Clarke artifacts Artificial intelligence artificial life artificial wombs Asilomar assisted reproductive technology assumption of mediocrity Aubrey de Grey Audrey Hepburn augmented reality authenticity automation autonomous weapon system autonomy Avatar avian flu AWS beauty behavioral science Ben Goertzel Benjamin Storey Beyond Therapy Big Dog Bill Joy bioart bioethics bionics body image body modification Brad Templeton Bradley Allenby Bradley J. Thames Brain Preservation Foundation brain scans brain uploading brain-computer interfaces Brandon Keim Brave New World breathing Brian Christian Brian Malow Bryan Caplan C.S. Lewis Campaign to Stop Killer Robots Caprica Carl Woese cats CCW cell phones character Charles Darwin Charles T. Rubin Charles Taylor chess children chimeras China Christianity Christine Rosen Christmas Claremont Review of Books Clearpath Robotics cloning CNN coercion cognitive computing cognitive enhancement cognitive liberty comments commercials communication technologies compression computational biology Condorcet consciousness constant connection Constiution creativity cryonics Cuban Missile Crisis cyborg Cynthia Kenyon Dale Carrico Daniel Sarewitz Daniel Sportiello Darlene Cavalier DARPA David A. Noebel David Benatar David Brin David Chalmers David F. Noble David Foster Wallace David Gelernter David Pearce David Rose death Deep Blue democracy Derek Parfit design designer babies despair despotism dictators disability disruption distraction distributive justice diversity DIYbio DOD Down syndrome drones dualism e-memory e-readers Earth eclipse Eclipse of Man economics Ed Boyden Ed Regis efficiency Eliezer Yudkowsky ELIZA embodiment empathy enhancement Enlightenment entropy environmentalism equality of access Eric Drexler Eric Talbot Jensen ethics ETI eugenics everyday life evolution evolutionary psychology Ex Machina existential risks exoplanets extraterrestrial intelligence extraterrestrial life extropy eyes in the back of your head Facebook faith fantasy fashion faux caution fiction Fight Aging First Amendment Fixed Flannery O'Connor flash crash flash war folk psychology Foresight Institute Fort Hood Frances Willard Francis Bacon Francis Fukuyama Frankstein Fred Baumann free markets French Revolution Friedrich Nietzsche friendly AI Future of Life Institute Futurism (art) Futurisms futuristic distance G.K. Chesterton gaming Garry Kasparov Gary Drescher Gary Marcus Gary Wolf genetic engineering genetics geoengineering George Dvorsky George Orwell Gilbert Meilaender Gizmodo global warming gloomy God Gödel Golda Meir goodness Google Gordon Bell government GPS Great Mambo Chicken and the Transhuman Condition Greg Benford Gregor Wolbring Gregory Benford H.G. Wells H+ magazine H+ Summit 2010 Halloween Hank Hyena Hans Jonas Hans Moravec heartbreak Heather Knight Heidegger Her history holism hope hubris human cloning human excellence human extinction human life human nature Human Rights Watch human significance humanism humanities humanoid robotics humor Iain M. Banks Ian Pearson ICRAC IEET immortality infanticide IQ Irfan Khawaja Isaac Asimov Isaac Newton Itamar Arel IVF J. Craig Venter J. M. Bernstein J. Robert Oppenheimer J.B.S. Haldane Jamais Cascio James Hughes James Jorasch James W. Wagner Japan Jason Furman Jason Robert Jeffrey Thurnher Jende Andrew Huang Jeopardy Jesse Schell Jessica Scorpio JFK Jill Lepore John Harris John Markoff John Ruskin John Singer Sargent John Smart Jonah Lehrer Joseph Weizenbaum journalism joy Judaism Juergen Schmidhuber Julian Savulescu jus ad bellum jus in bello just war theory KAL007 Kathleen Lawand Katja Grace Ken Hayworth Kenneth W. Anderson Kevin Jain Kevin Kelly killer robots Kindle kissing Kyle Munkittrick L5 Society lambda calculus Lauren Silbert law law of accelerating returns LAWS LAWS2015 lay science Leon Kass Leon R. Kass Lepht Anonym liberalism libertarian transhumanism libertarianism life extension lifelogging linguistics Lisa Katayama literature Lockheed Martin loneliness Lost love LRASM Ludwig Wittgenstein MacIntyre Conference mainstream Malthusianism man as beast Marc D. Guerra Marcus Hutter Marilynne Robinson Mark Blitz Mark Gubrud Mark Walker Martine Rothblatt Marvin Minsky Marxism Maryanne Wolf materialism Matthew Crawford Matthew Waxman Max More memory Methuselah Foundation Methuselarity METI Micah Mattix Michael Anissimov Michael Nielsen Michael Pollan Michael Schmitt Michio Kaku Mike Treder Milan Kundera military Millie Ray mind as computer Mind Children mind control minds Modern Times molecular manufacturing monstrosities moral relativism morality morphological freedom Morris Johnson Moshe Dayan multitasking nanotechnology NASA Natasha Vita-More National Geographic National Nanotechnology Initiative natural law natural rights Neal Stephenson Ned Seeman neuro-everything neurobiology neuroelectronics neuroengineering neuroscience Never Say Die conference New America Foundation Nicholas Carr Nick Bostrom Nick Carr Nietzsche Nikita Khrushchev Nikki Olson Nikolai Fyodorov Noah Goodman Noel Sharkey normativity nuclear weapons Olympics ontological fortitude Orwells Outline of History Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics P. W. Singer paradox of choice parenthood Patrick Hopkins Patrick Lin Patrick McGuire patriotism pattern-identity Paul Ramsey Paul Scharre personal identity personhood Peter A. Lawler Peter Singer Peter Thiel philosophy of mind photography Pioneer plastic surgery plastination Plato politics positive sum game postmodernism predation President's Council on Bioethics Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues progress progressivism psychology public relations quantum computing racism Radiohead Ramez Naam Randal Koene rationality Ray Kurzweil Ray Tallis recommended reading regulation religion relinquishment René Descartes repugnance resentment watch response to critics resurrection rhetoric of inevitability Richard Feynman Rick Weiss rights ritual Robert Ettinger Robert P. George Robin Hanson robotics robots Rodney Brooks Roger Scruton romance Ron Bailey Ron Fouchier Russia Ryan Gariepy S. Jay Olshansky Sagan Santa Claus science science fiction scientific enterprise scientism scientists secrecy sectarianism seduction community self-driving cars semi-autonomous September 11 Seth Lloyd SETI sex sex selection sexual enhancement Sherry Turkle simulation Singularitarianism Singularity Singularity Hub Singularity Summit Singularity University Slate sleep smart phones SMBC social interaction social robotics society Socrates Sonia Arrison Sorites paradox space space colonization space exploration sports Stanislav Petrov Star Trek Star Wars stem cell research Stephen Cave Stephen Hawking Stephen Johnston Stephen Wolfram Steve Jobs Steve Sailer Steve Talbott Stuart Hameroff Stuart Russell substrate chauvinism suffering superstition suspended animation synthetic biology systems tacos Tao Tea Party movement Techno-Human Condition Ted Fishman Ted Goertzel Teddy Ruxpin Terminator terrorism The New York Times The New Yorker The Prospect of Immortality the rhetoric of extinction thinking Thomas Malthus thought experiments Tim Tyler Time magazine Tocqueville Todd May Total Recall totalitarianism Transcendence transhumanism transhumanist tech fail translation travel truth Turing Machines Turing Test TV Twitter Tyler Cowen tyranny U.S. government U.S. military UAVs UGVs uncanny valley unemployment United Nations United States government uploading USSR USVs utilitarianism Utopia UUVs Vasili Arkhipov Vatican verification Vijay Kumar virtual reality virtue virtues Voyager Wafaa Bilal Walker Percy Walter Kirn Watson we are already x whole-brain emulation William Boothby William Dickens Winwood Reade Wired wisdom Witherspoon Council women's lib XKCD Yom Kippur War Yuval Levin Zeitgeist Zoltan Istvan
- ► 2015 (24)
- ► 2014 (9)
- ▼ 2012 (38)
- ► 2011 (46)
- ► 2010 (83)