Is Expecting Future Strangeness Our Essense?

Robin Hanson (
Mon, 18 Aug 1997 11:12:04 -0700 (PDT)

Hal Finney quotes Gregory J. E. Rawlins:
> ... A century or so
> from now, the earth may simply be the home world of a
> species rich and strange, a fiercely new and amazingly
> interesting species---transhumanity.

Listening to Greg Stock at Extro 3 I formed this hypothesis: that what
most unites us is a conviction that within a century (or two at most)
the world will be a VERY different place. Greg had been arguing that
people shouldn't try to stop some simple genetic possibilities,
because things are going to get lots stranger that that and people
better get used to it. And it seeems to me that most elements of our
community can be understood as coming from our taking the idea of a
strange future very seriously.

Lots of people seem to sorta believe in a strange future, yet seem
unwillling or unable to actually take the time to think seriously
about it.

But I wonder: is there any smart person out there who understands the
sorts of arguements that lead us to expect strangeness, and yet who
disagrees with our conclusion?

Robin D. Hanson