As is the case with many people who heard this news, I didn't know
Sasha personally. I only know what he's written that I've read. I've
been through most if not all of his website, and remember him being one
of the more active - yet at the same time amongst the most well-spoken -
members of a few mailing lists which I've also taken part in over the
I archive the extropians-digest messages each day. I also subscribe
to the real-time list in case I want to take part in a conversation.
Usually I don't, but I do keep a screenful or so of messages from the
list which speak to whatever's on my mind - musings, projects, intellectual
twists which hadn't occured to me.
When Max's sad annoucement came across, I had two messages from Sasha
on that short list.
It's very odd to have in front of you artifacts of communication that were
supposed to be in realtime and ephermal - and also have an announcement of
that person's passing, at the same time in the same collection. This is
the second time something like this has hit me in my electronic existence
and I hope never to get used to it.
Two things hit me when Max's message came across.
The first was probably the same reaction anyone would feel. Something along
the lines of "Oh, no.", and a pang of loss - even though I didn't know
him as a flesh-and-blood person yet, I knew his work, and as life goes
on it's likely I would have met him at some point.
The second was, "That shouldn't happen."
This to me was a shocking response; the idea that death itself could be
thought of as >wrong< - unnatural, tragic - in the particular way of
misfortune, not as an inevitability.
I'd like to think that's the most powerful message any transhumanist could
leave behind. I'll remember Sasha this way.
Death to death.
-- Rob Sweeney: Information Ecology. firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.rsie.com/ Time is a warning.
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