Re: Uploaded memories

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Wed, 08 Dec 1999 16:01:11 -0600

Kate Riley wrote:
> Sure, there's no question that the contents of our present memories may be
> stored. The question is what happens a billion years down the road, with a
> billion years worth of memories, at the increased clarity which will most
> likely be desired, with presumably a billion people (more?) drawing on the
> same resources. If we discount terminal entropy, and assume that there is a
> finite amount of matter in the universe, then there logically must be a
> point where all resources will have been consumed. Is there a way to avoid
> this? Will the universe experience heat death before then? Does this
> eliminate the possibility for "true" immortality?

Glad to see you're thinking for the long term; shoulda said so.

One answer, of course - and the best - is: "I'll worry about it a billion years from now."

But in partial answer to your question, I would say that we've had literally dozens of speculations on this list - ranging from creating our own Universes, to manufacturing equal amounts of positive and negative matter, to encoding computations in warped spacetime, and so on and so on - under which there would be no limits to growth. And we've had nitpickers for every suggestion. It's really an open question, and while it's fun to discuss, it's ultimately one of those things where you just have to try and find out.

           Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
Running on BeOS           Typing in Dvorak          Programming with Patterns
Voting for Libertarians   Heading for Singularity   There Is A Better Way