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Transhumanism - thewake - 10-19-2007 12:13 PM

What do you think of it?
I think it's horrible, I really do. It's not that it's playing God, it's that it gets to the point where people aren't human anymore, they are more machine than man. You essentially create a super robot in human disguise.
It's messed up.

Resources:
Wikipedia Page
Anti-Transhumanist Site
Pro-Transhumanist Site
Internet movie on it


- Rebelnerd - 10-19-2007 12:26 PM

i don't mind as long as

a. it doesn't involve verichip-esque human networking
b. i can get an arm with a flamethrower on it.

in all seriousness though, as long as we're careful with it, i think it may be the next phase in our self-propelled evolution. not a bad thing in my opionion.


- thewake - 10-19-2007 12:48 PM

But, it essentially kills off your humanity.

It may let us live longer, or even forever, and think faster, but what's the point when the thing you want to keep most, your humanity, is long gone?

Not to mention, you're playing God, is it really right for a human to enhance himself like that? Ask yourself that.

Now believe me, one part of me is saying to let the people who want it enhance themselves and the others who don't not enhance themselves. But is it really worth the risk, what if the "humans" who are "enhanced" get a superiority complex and decide we would be better off as slaves, or even dead? People's morals could change dramatically with a more logical, cyborg, brain.


- Halla - 10-19-2007 01:32 PM

I'm actually doing a speech on the topic for the forensics team in school. Specifically, I'm doing it on "the Singularity", the point in time when entities more intelligent that humans exist. I'm absolutely for it. I'm not sure if you understand the concept. Its not that humans become machines. It's that machines become humans, without the weakness and limits of the human body and human brain.


- thoughtmaker - 10-19-2007 01:42 PM

when you think about it, if i cut off one of my arms, i can still go on living and being myself. if i cut off or transplant anything on my body i'm still considered myself. the only thing you can't cut out or transplant is the brain or consciousness, because that would mean becoming something else.

if they put machines in my brain to increase my intelligence, i'm fine with that, but i have a problem with it if they start interfering with my personality.


- Cilaos - 10-20-2007 01:42 AM

wes
it seems your only argument is about humanity and god
as far as its goes you cant prove there is a god
and what IS humanity exactly
people are still only animals after all

as long as i didnt have mind control parts or censoring chips or the like built is id be fine
hell with high strenth robot body i could take a walk on the see floor or chill at the peak of everest


- HeartofShadows - 10-20-2007 01:54 AM

It would be kickass if it allowed us to live longer and survive things we wouldn't have a chance of surviving before and the flamethrower thing. It would only get bad if they started kidnapping people off the street for the expierement.


- Darthmat - 10-20-2007 04:37 AM

But i can forsee this beign used for brainwashign and cnforming purposes.... Uhoh


- TheDelinquent - 10-20-2007 04:40 AM

I think everyone has this fear that a species that is a lot smarter than us would want to exterminate us. But when you look at the current rate of evolutionary intellect advancement, it's just not the case. I mean, consider this scenario: Suppose the neanderthals come back. We discover the remnants of their race in some forgotten cave somewhere. What would WE do?
Chances are, we would be ecstatic. We would help them. We'd try to ease their understandable fear of us, and we'd learn from them.
We are the only species concerned with actively preserving every other species on the planet. If we were to"improve" ourselves, what part of that would disappear? As far as I can tell, none.
That goes for physical traits as well as mental ones. What would be so unhuman about being able to hold our breath underwater for hours at a time? In another way of describing the problem, which is more valuable: Humanity, or life itself?
I think we need to focus a whole lot less on our species, and a whole lot more on solving problems.


- Rebelnerd - 10-20-2007 05:04 AM

Weswammy Wrote:But, it essentially kills off your humanity.

It may let us live longer, or even forever, and think faster, but what's the point when the thing you want to keep most, your humanity, is long gone?
but what is humanity? one of the biggest things that makes us human is that very ability to use technology to compensate for physical shortcomings. essentially, is this any different then a caveman using a stick to hit something instead of his fist, or wrapping skins around himself in the winter when his own is too thin to keep him warm? transhumanism isn't killing off our humanity, it's just taking the next step in using that humanity.

Quote:Not to mention, you're playing God, is it really right for a human to enhance himself like that? Ask yourself that.
i think it is, but my view on god is different than yours.

Quote:Now believe me, one part of me is saying to let the people who want it enhance themselves and the others who don't not enhance themselves. But is it really worth the risk, what if the "humans" who are "enhanced" get a superiority complex and decide we would be better off as slaves, or even dead? People's morals could change dramatically with a more logical, cyborg, brain.

that's true, which is what i mean when i say we need to be careful with it. we shouldn't make it fully available until it's cheap and easy enough that not just the super-rich and powerful can have it done, or they might use that to enhance themselves or their followers. the peasents need to have acess to it too. this is a problem that will need to be solved, yes. but the basic principle of transhumanism i think is fine.


- SoulRiser - 10-20-2007 07:24 AM

Quote:Transhumanism (sometimes symbolized by >H or H+) is an international intellectual and cultural movement supporting the use of new sciences and technologies to enhance human mental and physical abilities and aptitudes, and ameliorate what it regards as undesirable and unnecessary aspects of the human condition, such as stupidity, suffering, disease, aging and involuntary death.

If everyone lived forever and nobody ever suffered, what would be the point of life?

I don't have a problem with the general idea of using technology to improve people (like artificial limbs and armour and mounted flamethrowers and such)... but taking all the weaknesses away? That's like using cheats in games. It's great fun if all you're doing is messing around, but if you're actually trying to play the game properly it takes all the fun out of it.

The thing that bothers me most about that paragraph though, is the part where they want to get rid of stupidity. Who's gonna define "stupid"? Will the "stupid" person be given a choice in this, or will they be considered too "stupid" and therefore inferior?


- Will - 10-20-2007 07:49 AM

SoulRiser Wrote:
Quote:Transhumanism (sometimes symbolized by >H or H+) is an international intellectual and cultural movement supporting the use of new sciences and technologies to enhance human mental and physical abilities and aptitudes, and ameliorate what it regards as undesirable and unnecessary aspects of the human condition, such as stupidity, suffering, disease, aging and involuntary death.

If everyone lived forever and nobody ever suffered, what would be the point of life?

I don't have a problem with the general idea of using technology to improve people (like artificial limbs and armour and mounted flamethrowers and such)... but taking all the weaknesses away? That's like using cheats in games. It's great fun if all you're doing is messing around, but if you're actually trying to play the game properly it takes all the fun out of it.

The thing that bothers me most about that paragraph though, is the part where they want to get rid of stupidity. Who's gonna define "stupid"? Will the "stupid" person be given a choice in this, or will they be considered too "stupid" and therefore inferior?
If everybody died and suffered, would there be a point of life? I see nothing wrong with creating superhuman beings for fun, but I wouldn't want to mess with myself for fear of screwing myself up.


- SoulRiser - 10-20-2007 08:23 AM

Quote:If everybody died and suffered, would there be a point of life?

To do as much as you can with the little time you have. If you had infinite time, that wouldn't matter at all. Though, infinite time wouldn't be so bad... it'd be kinda nice if you still did everything you wanted to anyway. I would probably end up wasting a lot more time though... but then I guess it wouldn't matter Razz

If everyone suffered (and most people do), the point of life would be to try and ease their suffering. I'd be pretty bored if there was nobody to help. It sounds really selfish when I put it that way though.


- Rebelnerd - 10-20-2007 08:26 AM

when everyone has infinite life, then the problem of survival will be out of the way and we can set about the more important business of exploring other planets, unraveling the mysteries of the universe, and answer the "big questions." but first we need to solve our little mortality problem.


- SoulRiser - 10-20-2007 08:35 AM

I'm quite content with my own little private purposes in life and am not particulary interested in humanity's "progress" or "evolution" type stuff. In other words, I'm more interested in individual people, not the species as a whole.


- . - 10-20-2007 08:47 AM

What the fuck man? Cuckoo


- Will - 10-20-2007 12:22 PM

SoulRiser Wrote:
Quote:If everybody died and suffered, would there be a point of life?

To do as much as you can with the little time you have. If you had infinite time, that wouldn't matter at all. Though, infinite time wouldn't be so bad... it'd be kinda nice if you still did everything you wanted to anyway. I would probably end up wasting a lot more time though... but then I guess it wouldn't matter Razz

If everyone suffered (and most people do), the point of life would be to try and ease their suffering. I'd be pretty bored if there was nobody to help. It sounds really selfish when I put it that way though.
I think you realize how stupid that sounds but can't figure out why you feel this way. You're saying that you want people to suffer so you can help them suffer less. Your definition of suffering is looser than mine, but it still doesn't make sense. You want to ease people's suffering because it makes you happy, but you would certainly prefer for them individually to be better off. Maybe you partly want to feel sympathy.

But I don't like discussing topics like this without precisely explaining the situation. The concepts of immortality and suffering are rather vague if we don't agree on definitions for them.


- thewake - 10-20-2007 01:14 PM

Listen, you know what I define humanity as?

Compassion, the ability to think abstract thoughts, have fun, the need for love. That's "humanity" if I got turned into a robot, so to speak, would there be a point, from the point of view I have now, of even living!?! I don't think there would be.
When the technology gets to a point people just literally aren't human in any sense, but are robots in human guise.

And you don't realize that if you got enhanced mentally your very morals could change in a split second. You won't value the same things, I don't want to be logical beyond feeling, beyond compassion, or just beyond the simplest of love just so my brain won't rot away or so I don't die.

And if you want to get me started on religion: I think people cease to be human and their soul actually departs from the body when people either die or become incapable of dieing(which using technology would technically kill off the human parts of you after a certain point).


- PIMP. - 10-20-2007 01:20 PM

Immortality would suck. If you couldn't die then nothing would be dangerous and we all know danger equals fun. You would literally get bored of jumping off buildings. If i was immortal i would probably become a criminal with armed robberies being my forte. I would just go around to banks with a water pistol and hold em up. Even if i got caught big deal? Whats 20 years in jail when your immortal? But the bank workers wouldn't be scared because even if the gun was real i still couldn't kill them. And have you ever played a computer game so much that you know everything and your just over it. Thats what life would feel like. But i guess immortality has its advantages, you wouldn't have to eat or breathe which would save you allot of time, but thats the one thing you don't need, time. Screw that i would rather die.


- thewake - 10-20-2007 01:26 PM

If you shot a computer I'm pretty sure it would "die".
It's kind of like you would have replaceable parts and your brain would be preserved on computer software, so if you shot a computer it would break, so people would too.

It's meant to tackle aging, not gunshots.


- PIMP. - 10-20-2007 01:29 PM

Weswammy Wrote:It's meant to tackle aging, not gunshots.

Im pretty sure they would make the transhumans bullet proof. Idiot!


- thewake - 10-20-2007 01:34 PM

If you hit it hard enough I'm sure a window that says, "FATAL ERROR!" would pop up in the vision of the roboman you shot.


- Cilaos - 10-20-2007 02:08 PM

well by my definition the robot brains would be able to function exactly like an organic one
except its mechanical
id like still having everything that makes ME ME
at least mentally
all where really talking about is changing what we're made of
and whos to say that a self aware sentient machine would be logical and dangerous
sure there would be some, but like normal people there would be varying personalities


- thewake - 10-20-2007 02:57 PM

Dude, I really just want to stay human, I don't want to risk my humanity for something as trivial as longevity.
There are many things that could go wrong, there could be a war between the "organics" and "cyborgs". The cyborgs could treat the organics like monkeys, I mean we might as well have monkey intelligence compared to their superior "hardware".

The fact is transhumanism puts into jeopardy the very things I consider human, it makes people more than human, it makes them into machines.

Lets consider a mother has her baby's brain "nanoteched", essentially she is killing off the baby's humanity, or it's organic life, in favor of machinery. I don't want that to happen to me, even if I may die in 80 years and that baby may live forever.


- Cilaos - 10-21-2007 12:31 AM

now it just sounds like you think they're not human simply because of what there made of
and you make it seem like people with said machine bodies are evil just because there smarter
but look at things
more advanced creatures usually love lower life forms (see pets)
and you failed to address the part of my post saying what if they where exactly the same mentally (only smarter) but there body is robotic


you seem to care an awful lot about your humanity
ill chock it up to religion......or perhaps you're prejudice against cyborgs Omg
you bigoted son-of-a-bitch Laugh


- Halla - 10-21-2007 04:43 AM

There is no such thing as a soul. And just because you have been enhanced, doesn't mean you live forever. It means you choose when you wish to die. Whether you like it or not, a technological revolution towards artificial intelligence and transhumanism will happen.


- thewake - 10-21-2007 05:37 AM

Zero Wrote:more advanced creatures usually love lower life forms (see pets)
and you failed to address the part of my post saying what if they where exactly the same mentally (only smarter) but there body is robotic
We kill flies just because they annoy us and slaughter cattle to feed us.

Quote:and you failed to address the part of my post saying what if they where exactly the same mentally (only smarter) but there body is robotic
The fact is they won't be.
They'll have different wants and needs, emotion won't matter to a "robo-dude" so they won't have it.

Have you heard of atheists believing that we have virtually, life has virtually, no significance?
It seems logical the way they put it, and robotic brains would be very logical with the amount of intelligence they have.
Maybe even logical to the point of not feeling.

Quote:you seem to care an awful lot about your humanity
I do, more than you know.
I would die to keep my humanity, even to the point of suicide.

Quote:ill chock it up to religion......or perhaps you're prejudice against cyborgs Omg
you bigoted son-of-a-bitch :lol:
It's a combo of religion and the what I define as humanity. You know what I see?
What I define as humanity is long gone when people are more cyborg than human, when people are not living, but are robots.

And you know what? When the people are no long people anymore, but are robots. I have about as much qualms with "killing" them as I do throwing a DVD player that isn't anybody's and that I didn't pay for out the window.


- SoulRiser - 10-21-2007 01:40 PM

If they only enhanced people physically, but left their brains untouched, would you be OK with it?

Say some person had all his limbs replaced with mechanical things (with flamethrowers and nifty stuff attached), but his brain was still as human as can be... I'd be fine with that, though I don't think I'd want it done to me, because I'd probably lose my sense of touch in my limbs... and that'd kinda ruin quite a few things. I'd rather want some kind of exoskeleton suit with all the gadgets, as long as I can take it off when I feel like it.

I find it annoying how some people value logic over everything else, like emotions and intuition. They're just different things, one isn't better than the other. It's best to be able to use them all efficiently, rather than just rely on one of them all the time.


- thewake - 10-21-2007 01:44 PM

I'd be okay with my brain being untouched, but I wouldn't want my brain touched, I wouldn't want my humanity, my human nature, forsaken.