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Technoprogressive? BioConservative? Huh?
Quick overview of biopolitical points of view







ieet books

Post- and Transhumanism: An Introduction
Author
by Robert Ranisch and Stefan Lorenz Sorgner eds.

How “God” Works: A Logical Inquiry on Faith
by Marshall Brain

Virtually Human: The Promise—-and the Peril—-of Digital Immortality
by Martine Rothblatt

A Taxonomy and Metaphysics of Mind-Uploading
by Keith Wiley


ieet events

Brin @ In the Year 2525: Big Science, Big History, and the Far Future of Humanity
February 18 -, 2015
Pasadena, CA USA


Brain @ North American Basic Income Guarantee Congress
February 26 -1, 2015
New York, NY USA


Mikey Siegel on “Transformative Technology: An Evolution of Contemplative Practice”
March 5 , 2015
Smith College, Northampton, MA, USA


Smart, Pellissier @ Transhuman Strategies
March 21 , 2015
San Jose, CA USA


Sorgner on “Transhumanism”
March 23 , 2015
Ostschweiz, Switzerland


Hughes, LaGrandeur @ Posthumanism and Society
May 8 , 2015
NYC, NY USA


Sorgner, Schneider on “Transhumanism and Immortality”
May 20 , 2015
Hull, UK


Wallach, Hughes @ Governance of Emerging Technologies
May 26 -28, 2015
Scottsdale, AZ USA


Danaher @ Clinical Neuroethics: Bench to Bedside
June 17 -19, 2015
Paris, France


Ramez Naam on “Enhancing Humans, Advancing Humanity”
July 22 , 2015
San Francisco, CA USA


Vita-More, Rothblatt, Hughes @ Juniata H+ Conference
July 26 -31, 2015
Juniata College, Huntingdon, PA USA


Hughes, Sorgner @ Beyond Humanism Conf: From Humanism to Post- and Transhumanism?
September 15 -18, 2015
Seoul, S. Korea


ieet news

IEET Audience Skeptical of Taxing Bitcoin Income
(Feb 22, 2015)

We asked “Should income from virtual currencies like Bitcoin be taxed like regular income?” More than half of the 350 of you who responded were skeptical that such income could be tracked, and another 18% were opposed to taxing it if it could be.

Please Welcome David Wood and Jon Perry
(Feb 3, 2015)

The IEET is pleased to announce the appointment of David Wood as an IEET Fellow and Jon Perry as an IEET Affiliate Scholar. David is a prominent vlogger, H+ Board member, and organizer of the London Futurists. Jon blogs regularly about futurism and economics at Decline of Scarcity and the IEET, and co-produces the podcast Review the Future.


For a Longer, Brighter and More Just Future (Dec 20, 2014)

IEET Audience Wants Regulation of DIY Biohacking (Dec 14, 2014)


ieet articles


International Society on Aging and Disease (ISOAD)
by Ilia Stambler
Feb 27, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Position Paper: The Critical Need to Promote Research of Aging Below is the position paper on the Critical Need to Promote Research of Aging of the International Society on Aging and Disease (ISOAD). This paper briefly details the rationales, the technologies and the policies that are needed to promote this research. Thus it can serve as a generally applicable advocacy or lobbying paper in different countries. Please help spread it. Please contribute to the widest possible recognition and support of biological research of aging and aging-related diseases. We welcome the readers to circulate this position paper, share it in your social networks, forward it to politicians, potential donors and media, organize discussion groups to debate the topics raised (that may later grow into grassroots longevity research and activism groups in different countries), translate this position paper into your language, reference and link to it, even republish it in part or in full (for example, the policy recommendations can fit on a single page flyer), join the ISOAD or other aging and longevity research and advocacy organizations.


How Iron Age Literacy Spawned Modern Violent Extremism
by Valerie Tarico
Feb 26, 2015 • (2) CommentsPermalink

Why aren’t Muslim and Christian extremists extremely peaceful? The answer lies in the Iron Age setting of the Bible and Quran—when literate cultures replaced the Golden Calf with the Sacred Text. Diplomats, religious leaders, and peacemakers of many stripes keep insisting that ISIS isn’t about Islam. They point to a host of other factors including colonialism, injustice, lack of economic opportunity, and hopelessness. They’re not altogether wrong, but they are missing the tyrannosaurus rex in the room.


Remembering Sidney Coleman
by Gregory Benford
Feb 26, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

In January 2007 Sid Coleman’s wife, Diana, sent a letter to their friends about his decline. It was troubling; Sid was one of those I most admired in fandom—indeed, in life.


What Are the Best Ways to Prevent Global Catastrophe?
by Seth Baum
Feb 26, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Reducing the risk of major, permanent global catastrophe is arguably the most important priority for humanity today. The reason is simple: Such a catastrophe threatens countless members of future generations. Indeed, it is the difference between success or failure for human civilization. If humanity succeeds at avoid catastrophe, it can go on to achieve amazing things across the universe. If humanity fails, everyone could all die. Clearly, reducing the risk of such global catastrophe is a worthy goal. But, in practical terms, what are the best ways to reduce the risk?


How I Write for Peer Review
by John Danaher
Feb 25, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Publish or perish, or so they say. That’s the rule in academia. But not all publications are created equal. I’ve “published” over 700 posts on this blog (and republished many on other blogs), and although I think there are advantages to having done so, I’d be lying if I said these publications were academically “significant”. They’re certainly not significant from the perspective of the administrators and overseers lurking within the groves of academe. If you want to please these people you must produce peer-reviewed publications (preferably double or triple-blind peer-reviewed publications) in high impact academic journals. That’s where the game is.


“His Own Man’s” Man: Jeb Bush and the Return of Wolfowitz
by Richard Eskow
Feb 23, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Last week the nation was treated to the sad and embarrassing spectacle of Jeb Bush, mollycoddled scion to an empire of failure, proclaiming that “I’m my own man.” Here’s a simple rule of thumb: Anyone who has to say he’s his own man, or woman, isn’t. The 62-year-old Mr. Bush has been coasting on his family’s power and privilege since he was a weed-smoking, Steppenwolf-listening prep school student in the sixties.


Truth and Prediction in the Dataclysm
by Rick Searle
Feb 23, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Last time I looked at the state of online dating. Among the figures was mentioned was Christian Rudder, one of the founders of the dating site OkCupid and the author of a book on big data called Dataclysm: Who We Are When We Think No One’s Looking that somehow manages to be both laugh-out-loud funny and deeply disturbing at the same time. 


Top 5 Immediate Money-Making Applications of Blockchain Technology
by Melanie Swan
Feb 23, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

The right question is not whether Bitcoin is over or under-valued, or over or under-hyped, but what the biggest potential money-making applications might be. While we wait for consumer-ready cryptocurrency applications to be presented to us by the financial services industry and other trusted providers, in the progression of ATMs, online billpay, eStatements, and Apple Pay, there are many other opportunities to be explored.


Two Interpretations of the Extended Mind Hypothesis
by John Danaher
Feb 23, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

I’m trying to wrap my head around the extended mind hypothesis (EMH). I’m doing so because I’m interested in its implications for the debate about enhancement and technology. If the mind extends into the environment outside the brain/bone barrier, then we are arguably enhancing our minds all the time by developing new technologies, be they books and abacuses or smartphones and wearable tech. Consequently, we should have no serious principled objection to technologies that try to enhance directly inside the brain/bone barrier.


Science Fiction Thrillers
by Gregory Benford
Feb 22, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

A genre that science fiction writers have been attempting to colonize with some regularity is that of the suspense thriller. Here the dissolution of genre boundaries is more subtle, since the imaginative material and narrative conventions of science fiction may be retained, while the plot, structure, and tone are borrowed from a mode of paranoid pursuit melodrama pioneered in espionage novels from John Buchan to Robert Ludlum. Initially, those novelists who seemed most successful—at least commercially—in effecting this merger were novelists whose starting point was the thriller rather than the science fiction tale: Robin Cook, Michael Crichton, and Peter Benchley are among the most prominent examples, with Crichton having based nearly his entire career on science fiction conceits.


The Junk Science and Bad Faith Behind Colorado’s IUD Controversy
by Valerie Tarico
Feb 22, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Opposition to IUD’s, like opposition to vaccines, is putting American families at risk—and a Colorado controversy shows that misguided faith and scientific ignorance are to blame. When a pilot program in Colorado offered teens state-of-the-art long acting contraceptives—IUD’s and implants—teen births plummeted by 40%, along with a drop in abortions. The program saved the state 42.5 million dollars in a single year, over five times what it cost. But rather than extending or expanding the program, some Colorado Republicans are trying to kill it—even if this stacks the odds against Colorado families. 


The Future of Freedom
by piero scaruffi
Feb 21, 2015 • (3) CommentsPermalink

Fareed Zakaria's thesis is that the USA is moving towards an excessively democratic system in which polls are having a perverse influence on a system that was designed to be less about democracy and more about liberty. He doesn't quite offer a crisp definition of "liberty" but roughly it means individual freedom and protection from abuses of authority by the state. "Freedom" is a vague term, that has been used throughout history in different contexts (for most nations it meant "freedom" from foreign oppression). "Liberty" is about personal freedom. 


Mark Bittman on the Purpose of Society
by John G. Messerly
Feb 21, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

New York Times food expert and op-ed columnist Mark Bittman wrote a recent piece, What Is the Purpose of Society? Obviously the title captured my interest. But what could an expert on healthy food have to say about the purpose of society? A lot it turns out.


It’s Time to Destroy DRM
by Erick Vasconcelos
Feb 21, 2015 • (1) CommentsPermalink

On January 20, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) announced the Apollo 1201 project, an effort to eradicate digital rights management (DRM) schemes from the world of Internet commerce. Led by well-known activist Cory Doctorow, the project aims to “accelerate the movement to repeal laws protecting DRM” and “kick-start a vibrant market in viable, legal alternatives to digital locks.” According to EFF, DRM technologies “threaten users’ security and privacy, distort markets, undermine innovation,” and don’t effectively protect so-called “intellectual property.”


To Prevent World War III, Do Not Arm Ukraine’s Regime
by Gennady Stolyarov II
Feb 21, 2015 • (7) CommentsPermalink

One can rarely find four thinkers as distinct from one another as Gorbachev, Kissinger, Chomsky, and Ron Paul, and yet, for all of their differences, each of them is clearly guided by a systematic, thoroughly considered intellectual framework. All four of these thinkers have concluded, starting from different practical and moral premises, that further escalation of the Ukraine crisis by the United States would be a dangerous, deeply inadvisable behavior.


Three Signs That Young Americans Are Getting a Raw Deal
by Richard Eskow
Feb 19, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

We talk a good game about opportunity in this country, but here are three signs that we’re failing to provide young people a fair shot at prosperity. Sign #1: People typically achieve most of their earnings gain in the first 10 years of employment. A new study from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shows that “the bulk of earnings growth happens during the first decade” of a person’s employment. (The study actually focused on men, for methodological reasons.)


Natural Law Ethic (Part 1 & 2)
by John G. Messerly
Feb 19, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Let us now consider the view that morality rests upon religion. Assuming that a relationship between some God and morality exists, how do we characterize it? A classic formulation of this relationship is the divine command theory which states that “morally right” means commanded by God, and “morally wrong” means forbidden by God.


The Existential Importance of Getting Outside Ourselves
by Phil Torres
Feb 17, 2015 • (0) CommentsPermalink

I recently responded to a rather nice blog post by Herb Silverman as follows: The average lifespan of a Drosophila fruit fly is about 30 days. Imagine what it observes from its perspective: young humans, old humans, middle-aged humans, wandering through the world. No single fruit fly observes a human of one sort turning into another. From its "pre-theoretic" point of view, it only sees "types" of humans that are more or less "fixed" across time (the 30 days of its life). There's no direct evidence of human aging in any single fruit fly generation…


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The IEET is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization registered in the State of Connecticut in the United States. Please give as you are able, and help support our work for a brighter future.

ieet multimedia

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The Need for Cognitive Privacy
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Mark Lewis on “Have We Reached Peak Education?”
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7 surprising facts about silver nanoparticles and health
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comments

instamatic on 'How Iron Age Literacy Spawned Modern Violent Extremism' (Feb 27, 2015)

CygnusX1 on 'How Iron Age Literacy Spawned Modern Violent Extremism' (Feb 27, 2015)

instamatic on 'The Future of Freedom' (Feb 24, 2015)

CygnusX1 on 'Will Superintelligences Experience Philosophical Distress?' (Feb 24, 2015)

Daryl Wennemann on 'Will Superintelligences Experience Philosophical Distress?' (Feb 24, 2015)

rms on 'It’s Time to Destroy DRM' (Feb 24, 2015)

rms on 'The Future of Freedom' (Feb 24, 2015)

JET

Enframing the Flesh: Heidegger, Transhumanism, and the Body as “Standing Reserve”

Moral Enhancement and Political Realism

Intelligent Technologies and Lost Life




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