RE: ethical problem? Some kind of problem, anyway...

O'Regan, Emlyn (
Mon, 19 Apr 1999 13:12:31 +1000

Interesting point about ancestors....

What happens if we do get time-travel, and we can live forever? What if we have a society which regards death as the greatest tragedy?

Will we go back and save all the people who died? Everyone?

And if not, why not?


>From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky[]
>Reply To:
>Sent: Monday, April 19, 1999 12:53 PM
>Subject: Re: ethical problem? Some kind of problem, anyway...
>"O'Regan, Emlyn" wrote:
>> I have found that this has occupied my thoughts more and more, and so my
>> conversation. In fact, I'm probably becoming an immortality bore. The
>> problem I have is, that when I'm blabbing away about living in the last
>> generation of mortals or the first generation of immortals, depending on
>> luck basically (and a lot of people's hard work, sorry to all you out
>> there), I suddenly get quite embarrased if I'm talking to or am nearby
>> an elderly person.
>1) It is now too late to save my great-grandparents, even though most
>of them were alive when I was born. But all four of my grandparents are
>still alive, and I think I have a fairly good chance of pulling off a
>Singularity in time to save them.
>2) Two words: Time travel.
>3) One word: Cryonics.
>"We will drag this planet, kicking and screaming, into the stark and
>unknowable future... We will do it before our parents die of old age."
>- The Extropian Banner
> Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
>Disclaimer: Unless otherwise specified, I'm not telling you
>everything I think I know.