Re: meta-selves

Robert J. Bradbury (
Wed, 27 Oct 1999 11:30:14 -0700 (PDT)

On Wed, 27 Oct 1999, Micah Redding wrote:

> maybe this has already been discused before, but I wonder:

It is probably a recurring theme. One of the first times I heard of it when Keith Henson explained his "Far Side Party" idea to me at Extro3. I would simply refer you to the archives but feel a need to give you a little more for the question after viewing what IMO was a less than wonderful response from another list member. Perhaps we should divide the list into extropian-newbies and extropians-OldNJaded. Or maybe I'm just misinterpreting things.

At any rate...

> what if I could clone/copy myself millions of times and send all the
> copies throughout the universe, telling them to return at a given time.

The problem is how do you gurantee that "you" will follow "your" instructions? The only way I can see you getting a favorable return rate is to have the instruction *hardwired* at the level of drives like "eating" or "breathing" and having a lot of error-correction code to prevent any mutations in the "directive".

If you do manage to do this you are crossing over the line of enslaving conscious entities (even if they are yourself). While I'm of the opinion that this is reasonable if you are doing it with your property, I know there are others, (Greg Burch for example), who feel quite the opposite. You can check the archives for our discussions on these topics. I think one of the subjects was "Mind abuse".

> when they did return, I could form a direct mind connection with each of
> them, forming a large "collective" entity. i would have all the memories
> of all their experiences, in effect, living a meta-life instead of living
> linearly.

You have to assume that none of the entities have evolved to the degree that "merging" memories is infeasible. I could imagine scenarios when they would be so different that the "mix" could short-circuit the individuals involved.

> it seems to me that this would be a goal fitting of an extropian,
> since this would allow me to get more out of life than any
> "individual" possible could. reactions?

I think it might make more sense to send the individuals off, maintaining communications with them letting them ship you idea & experience "objects" (IEOs) from their lives that you can try on from time to time. If you have a standard protocol for idea & experience exchange then you don't have the short-circuit problems. You also don't have to wait until the rendezvous time.

Since there is some cost for sending the IEOs around through space there is probably some incentive & competiation to give as good as you get. Otherwise you get a situation like -- "Spike3472 hasn't sent me anything good in 20,000 years! Thats it, he gets nothing from me for the next centamillenia, we will see if he gets the message".