Re: Hedonism

Ira Brodsky (
Sat, 5 Oct 1996 18:18:25 -0600

Anders Sandberg wrote:

>> You can't conquer death (and everything else) if you are a slave to
>> physical needs/desires.
>Are you sure about this? If the physical needs and desires align with
>what you want to conquer, you will be very good at it and enjoy the trip
>too. Imagine linking your pleasure center to some way of measuring your

No, I'm not sure. (And I'm almost never this humble. <g>) I agree with
your idea, but I'm also still wrestling with what a "pleasure center" is.
Isn't it at bottom an intellectual response to something physical?

>> As I recall, someone on this list (maybe it was
>> Max More?) said they would not want to be uploaded to exist solely as
>> intellect. Why not? Do you think if you achieved such an existence you
>> would miss having physical needs/desires? I doubt it.
>We humans are embodied, physical beings with a lot of emotional baggage -
>we *are* our bodies in some sense. So far all realistic uploading
>scenarios have simply dealt with copying the neurochemical pattern of us
>into a digital emulation, where we continue to live as emulated physical
>beings (who of course now can start to automorph very freely - who needs
>physical continuity?).
>We wont immediately become "pure intellect" - that doesn't exist, at least
>no human or human-derived intellect can work without emotion, motivation
>circuits and plenty of brainstem processing (you don't want to loose your
>superior colliculus or habenula when you upload). Without these parts we
>would simply not function well, and be less (effectively) intelligent. We
>might change ourself into posthuman beings with completely new such
>structures, but that will take plenty of work.

What I want to understand is what these structures really do, and whether
that is ultimately a "physical" or "intellectual" function.

Ira Brodsky
Datacomm Research Company
Wilmette, Illinois