Re: Genetic transition to posthumanism

From: John Marlow (
Date: Fri Apr 27 2001 - 05:52:02 MDT

On 27 Apr 2001, at 11:51, Anders Sandberg wrote:

> Gene therapy might become good enough one day (especially with nanotech) to
> make pre-existing individuals immortal.

This seems a certainty. A comprehensive nanotech by definition
includes "instant" genetic engineering; when you can deal with the
atoms, dealing with larger-scale DNA becomes largely pointless. Cells
which endlessly repair themselves (or are endlessly repaired by
nannites) should be immortal--as should the bodies they comprise.

Problem areas: Changes we do not understand the purpose of. Instantly
resetting those age-related changes (within the brain, for example)
to youthful norms could do serious damage (presumably cognitive).
Making a backup copy beforehand, however, should obviate even this
problem and permit experimentation.

All other paths are stopgaps on the road to nanotech--which obsoletes
all technologies. If cyborging occurs at that point, it will be
accomplished by means of nt, and done to convey advantages
unattainable via purely organic upgrades. Memory storage capacity is
one presumed example. It's also possible some persons will choose to
inhabit cyborged or completely artificial bodies for reasons other
than necessity. Again, these bodies will be constructed via nt.


John Marlow

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