Ray Kurzweil: A singular view of the future
New Scientist, 06 May 2009 by Liz Else
„For inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil, being human with limited intelligence and doomed biology was never good enough. So he came up with an idea called the Singularity – a time when humans merge with machines, become smart and live forever. From MIT to the White House, people either hate the idea or can’t wait for it to happen. So, asks Liz Else, will any of us live long enough to see it?“ [read original article]
Metamodern.com (Eric Drexler)
In this blog, I’ll discuss current progress in science and technology, often with a specific perspective in mind: how current progress can contribute to the development of advanced nanosystems. This system-building perspective often highlights research opportunities and rewards that might otherwise be missed. As the topics come up, I’ll be suggesting research objectives that seem practical, valuable, and ready for serious pursuit.
However, like Engines of Creation, this blog isn’t intended to be “about nanotechnology”, but about broader issues involving technologies that will bring global change. Social software and the computational infrastructure of society are high on the list.
I hope that you will find enough of value here to repay your ongoing attention. [...]
Transhumanist Tech Is A Boner Pill That Sets Up a Firewall Against Billy Joel
Futurist, prankster, and one-time presidential candidate R.U. Sirius just launched his latest magazine, H+, which is devoted to a transhumanist vision of the future. Though a lot of futurism these days could easily be called dystopianism, the future that Sirius shows us in H+ is hopeful, full of cool futuristic gadgets and genetic cures for death. What exactly is transhumanism, anyway, and why do you keep hearing about it? Sirius dropped into the io9 lifepod from his space capsule to explain why you might already be a transhumanist — and what the ultimate transhumanist technology would be. [...]
For updates see: http://www.operatingthetan.com/
R.U. Sirius (10 ZenMonkeys):
(»On April 26, 2001, Keith Henson was convicted of interfering with a religion — a misdemeanor under California law — for picketing outside Scientology’s heavily armed, razor wire-enforced base, outside Hemet California. He split for Canada, becoming the world’s first “Scientology fugitive,” and he’s back in the U.S. dealing with a variety of court cases related to Scientology.
Henson was just thrown back in jail. As best as I can make out from the limited information currently available, Henson and his lawyers were scheduled for a hearing at 1:30 pm on Tuesday, May 8th. They were apparently unaware that warrants had recently been signed by the Governors of California and Arizona, and after the hearing, Henson was handed over to the Yavapai County Sheriff Department for incarceration until a hearing on Wednesday May 9th at 9 a.m. (A note received this afternoon — May 9th — from Henson’s wife, Arel Lucas, says that he will remain in the lockup at least until Monday, May 13th. She invites people to write to him at: Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, Howard Keith Henson, 255 E. Gurley St. Prescott, AZ 86301. She also reminds you that the prison authorities read the letters before passing them on.) [...]«)
Article in May Issue of “Crisis” Magazine (from PostHumanityRising)
(»Last year one Eric Pavlat approached me about the possibility of doing an email interview on the subject of Transhumanism for a Catholic magazine called “Crisis”. I agreed, got a somewhat lengthy list of questions, and gave an even lengthier assortment of answers. Well, the article finally appeared in this month’s issue of the magazine, and unfortunately my responses were radically truncated by virtue of the writing and editing process. The article is still well worth reading, however.
For the edification of those who might be curious, however, I am publishing below the original questions and my answers as originally sent. (I checked with Eric and he encouraged me to do so.) The only modifications I made are cosmetic, to make it clearer what were his questions and my responses. [...]«)
(»I interviewed Keith Henson for the  Henson’s recent arrest on charges related to his battle with Scientology, people would be interested in a broader view of Henson. In this interview, we talk about a range of topics, finally ending with a discussion on his thoughts about his problems with Scientology at that time. The interview appears below in full, including the title and introduction:
Exile On Meme Street: Keith Henson Interview
Keith Henson is sort of an ur-transhumanist. In the 1970s – ‘80s, he was one of the founders and leaders of  The L5 Society, an organization dedicated to building homes in high orbit using raw materials from the lunar surface. The L5 group attracted the interests of those seeking practical solutions to predicted resource scarcities, among them K. Eric Drexler. Henson formed a friendship with him, and was among his contacts as Drexler was conceiving nanotechnology [...]«)
RU Sirius (10 ZenMonkeys):
“Scientology Fugitive” Arrested
(»On Friday, Arizona police arrested a 64-year-old man — a fugitive since 2001 in a bizarre war that mixes free speech, copyright law, and the Church of Scientology.
Keith Henson’s journey began seven years ago while innocuously watching another critic mock the group on an internet newsgroup. In a gonzo discussion about procuring a “Tom Cruise missile,” they’d joked about working with “Secret Agent 99, wearing a stunning black leather biker outfit.” Other posters joined in the internet discussion, asking whether Tom Cruise missiles are affected by wind.”No way,” Keith joked. “Modern weapons are accurate to a matter of a few tens of yards.”
The police were informed of his “threatening” posts, and Henson was arrested. [...]«)
‘Tom Cruise’ missile jokester arrested
Keith Henson, a fugitive since being convicted of interfering with Scientology, faces extradition to California from Arizona.
By Declan McCullagh
Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Published: February 5, 2007, 7:20 PM PST
(»A Silicon Valley figure who fled the country after being convicted in part because of a Usenet joke about Tom Cruise and Scientology has been arrested in Arizona.
Keith Henson, an engineer, writer and futurist, was arrested Friday in Prescott, Ariz., where he has living for the past few years and now faces extradition to California. Henson originally fled to Canada after the 2001 conviction. [...]«)
(»Keith Henson, an outspoken anti-Scientology activist, was arrested last night and is currently being held at the Prescott Detention Center in Arizona. His wife, Arel Lucas, says he was taken into custody on a 6-year old bench warrant issued by a Riverside County judge.Henson’s troubles began in 2001 when he was convicted of “interfering with a religion”, a misdemeanor under California law, for picketing outside Scientology‘s facility in Hemet, CA. He eventually fled to Canada after receiving a number of death threats. He was deported in 2005 after his asylum bid was rejected.Lucas strongly suspects that the Church of Scientology is involved in Henson’s current incarceration and fears for both his life and her own. The death threats have been constant since 2001. Scientology’s power and reach has become considerable in recent years, leading to accusations that it is not so much a cult as it is an organized crime outfit that disguises itself as a religious organization.In addition to his anti-Scientology activism, Henson is a pioneer in the transhumanist and cryonics movements. After receiving word of Henson’s incarceration, the transhumanist community quickly mobilized. The Prescott Detention Center has been inundated with calls from concerned supporters. Various media outlets have been alerted (including BoingBoing), and a number of Websites have already been set up to raise awareness in support od Henson’s cause (including Free Keith Henson). The Extropy Institute has set up fund to help Henson with mounting costs.
Learn more about Keith Henson and his plight here, here, and here.«)
INTERVIEW – Nick Bostrom on the future, transhumanism and the end of the world
(»For most people, the idea of altering human cognitive and physical capacities so as to improve the fundamental character of the human condition is nothing more than science fiction. Indeed, it’s difficult to find a contemporary work of science fiction that does not engage with the ideas of transhumanism whether it is in the shape of cybernetic implants or genetic engineering or even the singularity.
However, far from being the preserve of science fiction writers such as Charles Stross, Cory Doctorow or Vernor Vinge, the ideas of transhumanism have enough academic and political weight to them to lead Francis Fukuyama to declare transhumanism the greatest threat to the future of humanity.
In order to find out more about the realities of the transhumanist movement, SF Diplomat sought out Nick Bostrom to ask him about transhumanism, the end of the world and the future of academic research. [...]«)
Metamagician and the Hellfire Club: (»I am an Australian writer, philosopher, and critic. I am currently a graduate student and sessional lecturer in the School of Philosophy and Bioethics, Monash University. As a creative writer, I specialise in science fiction and fantasy. Some examples are my Terminator trilogy and and my recent novel, Kong Reborn … a sequel to the original King Kong movie. My non-fiction work frequently deals with issues involving the human, or posthuman, future. I am interested in the ethics, and possible regulation, of emerging technologies, and the future of religion, morality, art, literature, political organisation, and human nature itself. I have a particular interest in the history and current state of the science fiction genre – and where it may be headed. Some of my articles are available on my web site. My formal qualifications include First Class Honours degrees in Arts and Law, a Ph.D on the supposed return to myth in contemporary literature, and a Master of Bioethics degree. I’m now completing a second Ph.D (in philosophy); this may seem extravagant, but I have my reasons!«)
Andart – (»Another lobe of Anders Sandberg’s distributed brain: essays on technology, science and the human condition.«)
Present Day Views of My Posthuman Past: (»Not so random musings about our present state and our future fate.«)
(“Transumanar is a transhumanist blog – online magazine on science, politics and culture, edited by Giulio Prisco. See Introduzione (Italiano) and About (English).
Transumanar is meant as a transhumanist reference in the Italian cultural and media world, an accessible website to explain the transhumanist worldview and our opinions on the important scientific, cultural, social and political trends of our time.
Italian is the main language, but some articles meant for a wider audience are in English.
Transumanar does not wish to propose a monolithic view of transhumanist thinking but, on the contrary, covers different points of view.”)
Our Technological Future: (“About upcoming technologies such as nanotechnology/molecular manufacturing, artificial intelligence, robotics, and biotechnology. All of these are accelerating exponentially. The implications are vast.”)
Sentient Developments: (“Transhumanist and technoprogressive perspectives on science, philosophy, ethics, and the future of intelligent life.”)
Cyborg Democracy (“is a nexus for techno-progressives, transmitting a sexy, high-tech vision of a radically democratic future.”)
Max More, Business Futurism, Advanced Decision Making (“Writing, speaking, and consulting on advanced decision making & foresight methods for handling the impact of emerging technologies.”) Die Seite bietet eine grosse Anzahl von More’s Artikeln zum Download an. More ist der wohl bekannteste Transhumanist.
Nick Bostrom’s home page (“I’ll share my quest. You’ll also find a selection of my papers in philosophy of science, ethics, transhumanism, probability theory & on humanity’s future. And one fable.”) Diese Seite stellt eine grosse Anzahl von Bostroms Artikel online zur Verfügung.
James Hughes (“James Hughes teaches Health Policy at Trinity College in Hartford Connecticut, and serves as Trinity’s Associate Director of Institutional Research and Planning. Dr. Hughes also serves as the Executive Director of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and its affiliated World Transhumanist Association. Dr. Hughes produces the weekly syndicated public affairs talk show Changesurfer Radio, writes the Change Surfing column for Betterhumans.com, and contributes to the democratic transhumanist Cyborg Democracy blog.”
Anders Transhuman Page (Homepage eines der wohl umtriebigsten europäischen Transhumanisten, die weiterführende Links und Texte anbietet.)
Nanogirl.com (“Personal Website of Gina Miller”)
Home and neighborhood of Alexander (Sasha) Chislenko (“In 1989, I left Leningrad, Russia for Boston, Massachusetts, as the relatively free society of the U.S. seemed more suitable for my goals: I want to understand how the world works, and steer it, and myself, into the glorious future. I invite you to walk around my cyberspace home. Here you can find many links to various things advanced and frontierish. This includes a number of my own articles on a variety of futuristic, technological and philosophical subjects, including my recent essays on Hyper-economy, Semantic Web, Cyborgs, liquid intelligence of the coming Mind Age, Enhanced Reality, Collaborative information filtering, and various other topics.”) Chislenko died in 2000.
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