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A Layperson's View of Future Technology and Society

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Future Technology

Future of

















The Future of Transhumanism

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transhuman girl

Wealthy, Healthy and Wise

Okay, let me see if I've got this right. I could stay young forever? Groovy. A complete backup of my brain? Copy that. What's this? An estimate? I knew it sounded too good to be true.

As with previous medical breakthroughs, it is possible that future human enhancements, like brain-machine interfaces and longevity drugs, at least initially, may only be affordable for the wealthy. The well-to-do, well could be, the next big thing.

Trickle Down Technology

Some future forecasters point out that many medical products and procedures have been expensive when they were first introduced. Prices can drop through competition, lower production costs and after patents run out.

Medical enhancements, however, may encounter unique barriers to lower prices.

Cosmetic surgeries and implants, for example, have been available for decades. Visit Beverly Hills and you'll see more lifts than a crane operator, but you'd be hard pressed to find a tightened temple in my neck of the woods.

What obstacles, wrinkles if you will, face society in providing available and affordable transhuman technology for everyone?

Wrinkle #1 - In the year 2050, 'transhuman technology for all', would mean advanced medical technology for an estimated 9 billion people.

Wrinkle #2 - Medical insurance policies will probably not cover human enhancements.

Wrinkle #3 - The fewer recipients, the higher the value to the consumer. What fun would Jeopardy be if everyone had an encyclopedia implant?

Wrinkle #4 - You just invented the Immortality pill. What price will you set?

Misfits and Retrofits

Even with reasonable closing costs, brain implant surgery may not be in the budget for many people living in the transhuman age. No prescription for immortality, for those that cannot afford the pill. In the era of 'half human/machine', the gap between the Halves and the Halve-Nots, will be as large as the profits. - ffa

Brain-Machine Interface

Brain machine interface

Brain machine interfaces (BMIs), allow for activity in the brain to be sent to, or received from, a computer.

Brain machine interfaces are currently assisting paralyzed patients communicate, control robotic arms, computers and other devices. In the future, BMIs could provide a path to brain enhancement and memory upload/download.

Brain Computer Interfaces

Transhumanism and Posthumanism Articles, Blogs and Web Sites

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Transhumanism and Post humanism Articles
Title Source Date
Motorola Mobility/Google files patent application for electronic throat tattoo KurzweilAi.net 11/13
The first bionic hand that can feel The Independent 02/13
First Australian bionic eye prototype successfully implanted Gizmag 08/12
First attack on a cyborg KurzweilAi.net 07/12
When creative machines overtake man Youtube 04/12
Artificial synapses could lead to advanced computer memory and machines that mimic biological brains KurzweilAi.net 04/12
Is the Six-Million-Dollar Man possible? BBC News 03/12
Men Must Merge with Machines S.B. Independent 03/12
Can you build a human body? BBC News 03/12
Will You Live Forever—or until Your Next Software Release—by Uploading Your Brain into a Computer? SciAm 12/11
Sir, There's a Camera in Your Head Wall Street Journal 11/10
Brain-Enhancing Drugs: Legalize ‘Em, Scientists Say Wired 08/10
Carboncopies–Realistic Routes to Substrate-Independent Minds KurzweilAI.net 08/10
Artificial life forms evolve basic intelligence KurzweilAI.net 08/10
Cyber-hugs and robot babies - a brave new world Unexplained-Mysteries 06/10
Part-Human, Part-Machine Transistor Devised Discovery news 06/10
Mexicans get microchipped over kidnapping fears New Scientist 07/08
Nanotechnology, transhumanism & the bionic man Nanowerk 05/08
Merging Man and Machine to Reach the Stars Space.com 03/08
Top 10 Transhumanist Technologies Acceleratingfuture.com 07/07
Robo-quandary Journal Sentinel 05/07
Brain downloads 'possible by 2050' CNN 05/05
Transhumanism: The Most Dangerous Idea? Reason 08/04
The cyborg evolution Sydney Morning Herald 03/03
Cybernetic Immortality Principia Cybernetica 05/97

 

Transhumanism and Posthumanism Web Sites and Blogs
Title Description
Anders Sandberg Transhumanistic resources
Are You A Transhumanist Questionnaire Transhuman.org
Brighter Brains A Neuro-Advocacy organization
CarbonCopy Advancing Substrate Independent Minds (ASIM)
Extropy.org Extropy Institute
H+ Humanity Plus Magazine
Acceler8or.com All the best transhumanist bits and bytes, with a side order of strangeness and charm
Journal of Evolution and Technology Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies
Natasha Vita-More Philosopher of transhumanism
Nick Bostrom Nick Bostrom home page
Posthumanism Wikipedia
Posthumanism.com Nick Bostrom site
Transhumanism Wikipedia
Transhumanism at ASU Arizona State University
Transhuman concept image Flickr
Transhuman Tribe Transhumanism blog
Transvision 2010 Transhumanist Conference and Community Convention

 

References
Article Sources
Wealthy, Healthy and Wise
Brain-Machine Interface
Article by ffa
Image from istock
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