Re: Art (was Re: Skeptics Take on the Extropian Concept)

Steve Massey (
Mon, 02 Mar 1998 14:32:03 CST

>From: "E. Shaun Russell" <>
>Hal Finney wrote:
>>All the transhumanist art in the world is not going to turn us into
>>transhumans. Only technology can do that.
> A moot point, but it could also be said that all the technology
>the world is not going to change the social attitude toward scientific
>advances. Art is crucial to that. Bottom line is this: that both
>technology and art are essential to a culture's progress. A balance
>a compromise-- is likely the only way to unify society's general
>perspective on both the short and long term future.

I generally define art as `engineering of emotions'. eg: the
creation of particular emotions at particular times, or associating
an emotion with a particular idea. This seems to cover most
popular meanings of the term, from ancient poetry, through
ideological paintings, up to modern `artistic' disciplines such
as marketing and advertising.

It is not yet a fully understood engineering discipline, of course,
due to the large amounts of feedback that are generated from art
that is currently in circulation. Progress is gradually being
made, however, especially in the musical sphere (eg: the Spice
Girls, and that recent program that simulated the music of Bach).

Since the human brain is, self-evidently, deterministic, I
imagine that art will be increasingly automated over the next
few decades. Transhuman art - attempts to communicate between
transhumans at the emotional level - is something else again. I
can easily picture different groups of transhumans being defined
by the artistic clade they identify with, and hence the different
basic view of the world they share.

Steve Massey||||

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