RE: Emlyn on the teev - help!

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Thu May 17 2001 - 10:49:03 MDT

Emlyn wrote,
> Through some strange confluence of events, it seems that I am to appear on
> my current favourite tv program, Aftershock (Australia, ABC, Thursdays
> 8:30pm).


> So, I'm throwing it open to the peanut gallery. If you were to
> talk publicly about cyborged humans in the nearish future, what would you

I'd start with required advances first:
- mechanical exoskeletal legs to allow people to walk instead of using
- mechanical eyes to allow the blind to see
- mechanical hearts to replaced damaged ones
- artificial organs to ease the shortage of real ones

Then move into optional advances later:
- why not use those exoskeletal legs to allow non-runners to run a marathon?
- why not use artificial lungs to make scuba diving easier?
- why not use artificial eyes to allow crime fighters to see in the dark or
x-ray through walls

Then move into entertainment advances:
- why not use those exoskeletal legs to perform amazing dance sequences or
sporting feats?
- why not use artificial eyes to hook into computers directly?
- why not use artificial ears to synthesize and edit music directly?
- why not have an implanted cell phone in your ear just for the convenience
of it?
- why not have an implanted internet hookup just to surf the net from
- why not let surfers get a permanent coating on their skin instead of
having to smear on sunscreen every few hours?
- why not let accountants get a built-in calculator in their head instead of
having to carry one around everywhere?

I'd start with the obviously needed medical advancements first. Then, once
we have them, we can use them for useful purposes. Then, once they are
common or cheap, we can use them as toys or superfluous purposes.
Eyeglasses used to be functional, but now they're a fashion statement.
Contacts used to be hidden, now they are used to change eye color.

> - Killer app 1: Life extension...

Obviously a necessity.

> - Killer app 2: Net connection...

For the computer-savvy, this seems necessary. To some, it is extraneous

> Killer app 3: Eternal youth and the beauty industry...

This is where people get scared. It's "unfair" that other people with
outlive them or look better by "cheating" with technology. They could
"cheat" too, but many people think we should stick with our God-given
attributes. Religion quickly comes into play here.

> or that, after installing some IBM human memory
> expansion, they inexpicably foul themselves whenever they think about
> Microsoft products.

We already have this today.

> This whole discussion of mine probably looks hopelessly
> ill-informed to many of you... so tell me why.

Actually, you had many wonderful and complicated thoughts all thrown out at
once. I'm sure you'll get a lot of feedback, but you already are doing

It seems like you don't consider yourself an expert in this field. You may
not be an expert compared to some people you know, but compared to the
viewing public and the TV reporters, you are already far surpassing what
they are going to be able to cover in a single episode.

Good Luck! Will it be carried on any C1 satellites that I might be able to
tap into? I would love to see the show.

Harvey Newstrom <> <>

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Mon May 28 2001 - 10:00:06 MDT