aaah… singularitarians are resurrectionists, too

Always fascinating to read about Ray Kurzweil’s dogged extrapolation from where he thinks we are now to where he wants to be – that is, immortal. He’s putting himself about a bit in the UK in connection with the new film about him. First in the Guardian, now in New Scientist.

He says all the usual things about uniting with our technology sometime in the next few decades (should be in time for me, too, as a tail-end baby-boomer – possibly the most fortunate generation to have been able to join, unless of course we turn out to fit the title of Damien Broderick’s Last Mortal Generation).

A new thing, though in Liz Else’s piece in New Scientist. Turns out it is not his own death which really motivates him, but his father’s. And he’d like to bring dad back, as well. Thus

“Using DNA from his grave collected by nanobots, then adding all the information extracted by AI from my memories and those of other people who remember him. Plus all the mementos of his life that I’ve kept, in boxes and elsewhere, could be downloaded. He could be an avatar, or a robot or in some other form.”

So the immortals will surround themselves with facsimiles of those they have lost. Singularitarians are resurrectionists, too. I dunno, wouldn’t it just be easier to become a Christian? Their deal seems about as plausible as secular minded efforts to sustain belief in endless life through technology. Wonder if Kurzweil will be inviting Frank Tipler to his new “singularity university”?

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